Ahmed Zaidan is from the city of Mosul, northern Iraq. I started my journey in poetry in 2006, when I had begun reading the revolutionary poems on different levels, which were demanding such things as woman rights, freedom, liberating the society from the past.
This trend in writing continues with me, due to the poets I used to read. I found myself that guy who describes himself as the sea inside a closed bottle of champagne, or the bird that refuses to land on the dusty domes, from which the calls of hatred are being launched. Even though all of that, I continued singing on trees of humanity for people to come with me and join the bridal of nature, which unify all of us and bring us together after our long term dispute!
First stage at college of Arts
I was that guy who doesn’t believe until he feels and then touches I was told by my close friends no to publish any of my revolutionary poems, except those ones which talk about simple issues and love of mother or maybe the weather!
My nature, as being not a patient freshman, had pushed me to self-gambling into a country, where there is no place for writers to express whatever is in the heart and head. I did not realize the laws of the game that time.
I went with all my power to condemn the society with all its establishments that are dedicated to keeping the ignorance in the locals. So, I started with mosques that call people to pray for devastation of other nations, who don’t believe in Islam. They are mostly called the countries of infidels, while Christianity is a genuine part of Iraqi society.
I had realised since I started reading that the world is wider than only a flag or a language. That was helpful in many cases, in order to understand that no doubt on the other side there might be people who think in the same way as I or do what I was doing at the moment.
Watching films and social shows from abroad had opened the big door before me to come into the world, despite the closed country I had lived in, which was simillar to a collective jail. I took advantage of the social media that allowed me to enlarge my friendship circle from local to international. That is what drove me to dream about travelling and catch the last trolley in the train of the civilized world, as I described the status at that time!
My first book sees the light 2009
The abbreviation of my life since my beginnings in poetry up to that date was my book, which I published. Despite being conservative somehow, I tried to avoid for myself and my family the potential danger that may occur in case it was read by extremists.
That did not prevent the book shops to get rid of the last copy they possessed. They demanded me to come and take way what I had brought three days ago.
Sadly, I collected myself which was thrown here and there in very cheap containers. I carried the books away and distributed them freely to friends and relatives! Lost again and the money gone!
The book seller claimed that there were some poems which didn’t fit with the norms of our Muslim society. And anyway, people would prefer to read the religious books as they are useful in life and after life.
Working in media
I did not have a certain plan to work in the media, but after I issued my book, I received an invitation to attend as guest in the most famous channel in Mosul.
Ahmed participates in the mentor project of Colorit – The Colourful Pen.
(c) Lecti Book Studio, photos 2016