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The Stranger in Her Feminine Sign

Everything has gender in Arabic: History is male. Fiction is female. Dream is male. Wish is female. Feminine words are followed by a circle with two dots over it. They call this symbol ‘the tied circle’, knotted with wishes which come true only when forgotten or replaced by the wishes of others. In the town of tied wishes people feel great anticipation because a stranger will arrive today in her feminine sign. Someone says he saw her two dots glittering, refuting another’s vision of a cat’s eyes hunting in darkness. So scary, he says, how the moon hides in her red circle. Everyone is busy today listing wishes on pieces of paper they’ll give to the wind. When the stranger finds them on her way, she’ll collect them and adorn them to her circle, tossing off some old wishes


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