TOGANE: SHORT & SHARP; SWEET & SOUR

By Mohamud Togane (togane@progression.net)


When did you leave Somalia?

In 1965.

What's your education background?

I have BA in English & American Literature; and an MA in Creative Writing.

Do you think Somalia will ever get a viable government?

Yes,


when hens grow teeth
when pigs sprout wings and learn to fly
when hair begins to grow on your palms
when cats and mice learn to live in peace
when Arabs and Jews begin to learn to live together

in peace
in Jerusalem

as the capital of their common state bound
as one people fathered by Prophet Abraham
as kissing cousins
as kin & kith


holding their Faith

in Allah
in the unity of spirit
in the bonds of Peace
in the righteousness of Life.

Most Somalis think that you are not Muslim,
why do you think they reach this conclusion?

Thank God!
I live now in Canada


Where it does not matter what most Somalis think
Where I am free from all religions

Particularly from

ignorant & arrogant
black & bad
primitive & brutal
postiche & bogus
foolish & fanatical
violent & vainglorious
coercive & irrational
Munaafaq & mindlessly clannish Somali Islam.


Thank God!
I live now in Canada

Where I can practice any religion I damn well please!

But I am beyond religions


Thank God!
I live now in Canada

Where I dare declare without getting killed by fanatical fools
that Love is my religion and the universe is my Holy Book


Thank God!
I live now in Canada

Where I now enjoy being a postulant Sufi abecedarian


Free to be me
Free to be Togane
Free to celebrate & savor the sapid postulative insight that

"Religion is for those who are afraid of going to hell.
Spirituality is for those who have already been there."

Why do you write about tribalism/clanism in most of your work?

Because I have yet to meet one single Somali

Who

only belongs
only to Allah

Who doest not

first & foremost

belong to the Somali KKK of
Dir Darod Dayoos Doqon Da-mean Danyer!


Look
Let us make a deal:

I will stop writing about Somali clanism

The most insidious sort of racism

When we Somalis stop wandering all over the world
Like that dog Alexander Pope gave to his Royal Highness

With a sign around our clannish stiff necks
Proclaiming to all & sundry


I am his Haughty Highness’ Hutu Hawiye hog of a dog
Pray tell me, sir, whose hog of a dog are you?
Are you a dirty dumb dreadful Darod dog of a hog?

How do you think Somali youth will receive your work?

In the same spirit in which I produce my work
In the spirit of Somalisssimo!
In the spirit of Somalia Hanolatto!
In the spirit of love & joy
In the spirit of open-mindedness
In the spirit of fun & joy
In the spirit of clan-less guilelessness!
in the spirit of telling the truth regardless of who is waiting to take an offence!
In the spirit of not being stuck on being stupid like most Somalis
In the spirit of having the courage


to say my say
to say what I believe
to express my opinions
regardless of who is itching to be offended by me!!!

Above all,

in the spirit of having the courage to betray my clan
Rather than my friends


As my father had done
As my father had taught me

When he quipped, Awada Jáw Abgal!
Only tonight do I deign to call myself an Abgal!

What book are you reading at the moment and Why?

Right now I am reading a book entitled,
“Tomorrow’s God: Our Greatest Spiritual Challenge”
by one called Neale Donald Walsch (2004)

because I love God
because I love reading
because I hate sleeping alone


so I always sleep with a book
so I always wake up with a book

you know, at least


a book doesn’t fart
a book does not snore
a book does not have a hell of a halitosis!
a book won't get offended if you drop her for another book!

So go to bed with a book
And come before the book comes
if you can't help it!

The book won't put you out

in the outhouse
in the doghouse

because you passed out and began to snore too early before her
because you hit a humdinger of a homerun too early before she did!


Do you plan to go back to Somalia?

I will go back to Somalia
When we stupid Somalis master
Jackie ‘Moms” Mabley’s most basic lesson of

If you always do
What you always did
You will always get
What you always go!


NOTES

The questions were put to Togane by Ahmed Hussein of pacemagazine.com