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24/02/2018 - 07:00hs

In the poetry of an Egyptian, life seen from the windows

Amro Saad lives in Brasília and launched in Egypt, this month, his second poetry book. The verses, written in Arabic, were inspired by the ‘windows’ from which the author sees and saw the world, in Brazil and in his home country.

Press Release

Amro Saad: second poetry book

São Paulo – Egyptian Amro Saad, who’s been living in Brazil for 13 years, launched his second poetry book this month in his home country. Titled “Window to the Sea”, the book was written in Arabic and includes 75 poems on what the author observed and lived throughout the years, in Egypt and also in Brazil. The main inspiration is the window in which the poet’s mother would sit by, in Mansoura, the family’s town, for hours and hours, when he was a kid.

The mother was a homemaker and died when the author – the youngest child – was 14 years old. Busy taking care of her children, she spent a lot of time inside the house and near the window that faced the street, in silence or talking. “She always looked through this window and said that she once could see the Nile,” says Saad. But when Saad was a child, the region was already occupied by buildings and all one say was the street. However, the view pointed to the Mediterranean.

“Later on, the windows began to get bigger, other windows came into my life, the one from the airplane, the one from Brazil to Egypt,” says Saad. The vision from these windows is the source for the Egyptian’s poems, including what he noticed while his home country faced a political and social transformation. Saad began to write the book’s poetry in 2011 and says that, in part of them, Brazil is included. “I always wrote based on experiences in Egypt, but in this book I began to feel Brazil also as a land of demonstrations, I wrote about Brazil,” he says.

Saad says that these windows are mental ones, with him also calling them windows of time and space. “I see from my mother’s windows to here,” he says. His father died before his mom, when Saad was six years old. “Her passing changed many things in my thoughts,” he says on his mother. According to the poet, if his mother hadn’t died, he wouldn’t have moved to Brazil. “It was an authorization for me to explore the world, other windows,” he says. And, from Brazil, he’s able to live both of his realities. “I’m in Brazil, but also living in Egypt,” he says.

And that’s because Saad’s work, in Brazil, is related to the Arab and Egyptian language and culture. The poet majored in Accounting but is connected to the arts since he was a kid. He was part of the school’s drama group, and later performed on the town’s theater. In the university, he began to write plays and poems in the popular Egyptian dialect, plus he continued to perform in the plays. The family also offered a connection with the arts due to the presence of musicians and poets.

A little later after graduating, Saad move to Brazil to marry a Brazilian woman. In the early going, he worked with accounting, first in Palmas, Tocantins, where he lived first, and later in Brasília, where he lives to this day. Saad’s wife is from Goiânia but lived in Tocantins when they got married.

A couple of years later, Saad began to work with simultaneous translation and, later on, he founded Oriente-se, the company that organizes events, simultaneous translation in many languages and promotes cultural activities based on the Arab world, such as film festivals and exhibitions. Oriente-se’s staff included translators and interpreters of many languages, from the Arabic to English, Spanish, French, Chinese, Japanese and others. They specialize in Eastern languages.

“Windows to the Sea” is Saad’s second poetry book. The first is called “Pieces of the Way” and was also just published in Arabic. The Egyptian says that the new work is a continuation of the first. The poet wishes to translate the book to Portuguese. In Egypt the book is on sale in the country’s bookstores and, in Brazil, it can be ordered at Oriente-se.

Saad travelled to Egypt at the end of last year and says that he wasn’t planning to publish the poems. But the date coincided with the Cairo International Book Fair, which took place in January, and the author was invited to several poetry-reading events. From these readings came the opportunity to publish his poems through a local publishing company, the Dar Isis. The book was launched during the book fair and had a launching event at the publishing company’s offices.

Quick info

Book: Window to the Sea
Author: Amro Saad
Language: Arabic
To purchase in Brazil: www.orientse.com
To purchase in Egypt: local bookstores

*Translated by Sérgio Kakitani

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