Wanderlust by Manayer Abdullah & Shaima Saleh

Posted on March 10, 2013 by


“For the past six months I have been watching him do the same thing over and over again. It’s been 8 towns up till now, for each town he has a cup. What is it in cups that allures him so? I never had the guts to ask him.”

“Do you see this cup? Do you see how black it is? It’s almost but not exactly as black as the marks that the bombshell left on my now shattered wall. Do you feel the engravings on this cup? It’s not nearly as embracing as my mother’s wrinkles when they hold her endless tears. Do you see this broken handle? Do you think this cup felt the same pain my brother felt when the forces broke his arm?”

“I’ll be damned if I don’t figure this out. Cups? He’s a deadweight with a fetish for cups, for God’s sake. I’ve been in the business for too long to find something even weirder than a midget with authority. I’ll just wait here until he does the one thing that gets him paid around here, carrying my trapeze.”

“The height of the performers’ jumps, and how they fall effortlessly, knowing that a certain someone will catch them and prevent their heads from getting smashed or their necks of getting broken. This doesn’t look like home. Back there when I fell I was only afraid of the next kick I will receive, the next bone that will change in place. My mother was never able to hold me, and I was never able to charge myself with her infinite love. But this collection of cups does look like home; resembling all the rare beauty, and all the rare warmth. Keeping these cups safe, closing my tent tight and making sure they will stay untouched: that’s all I think of every time I get out to do my job.”

“I didn’t believe my luck. The suitcase was right there. Boy, was he naive. Under the bed? Really? ‘Faster, you bitch, faster!’ Myself was a real bitch. Ho-ly shit was this guy bananas —and artistic! Those cups were something, I tell you. From big to small, chipped to wholesome, English to Asian, those cups were all lovingly nestled in blue velvet.”


“THE FUCK ARE YOU DOING HERE?” Shit. Shit. Shit. He’s not going to kill me with cups, is he? That’s not physically possible. I think. ‘Uh… quite the collection you have there. You’ve been collecting for long?’ I was emotionally shitting my pants. Out of nowhere –my right, actually- this massive bulk of a man knocked me to the side. ‘You’re safe? Safe. Home. You’re safe… home…’ I involuntarily let out a chuckle; “home? Cups. Really?” He covered them with the blue, velvet cloth and gave me that look of pure… the pne those rich bastards give me when I fall. Yeah, the one filled with their own inconsequential self-given virtue.”


“‘I wouldn’t expect such a noble concept to cross your dim-witted fucking comprehension.’” She’s damn lucky she’s only getting this from me. The fuck is she doing here? Who the fuck does she think she is? ‘Just take your fucking rubber legs out of here. And don’t you ever fucking say “home”. You don’t know what that is, and your filthy mouth isn’t fit for it.’ ‘Whatever your pathetic sentiment allows you, love.’ And then a jaw was against my fingers and a couple of shoulder blades against my forearm.”


“It was an electric storm that hit me, not a human being. ‘What… the fuck is wrong with you?’ I barely managed to speak. He wouldn’t reply, but he relaxed his grip. I took the chance for one (last?) comeback. ‘Honey, this isn’t home. Cups are just your own, special way of satisfying your emotional horniness; your wanderlust.’ ‘Can’t you just shut the fuck up?’ I spat at his face in return, and then it all turned black.”


(Parts in regular font are by Manayer Abdullah.

Parts in italics are by Shaima Saleh.

Parts in bold are by both.)

Posted in: Wanderlust