Marwa Helal

PREFACE from Hopscotch

“I do not believe the firefly gets any great satisfaction from the inconvertible fact that he is one of the most amazing wonders of this circus, and yet one can imagine a consciousness alert enough to understand that every time he lights his belly this light-bearing bug must feel some inkling of privilege.”

– Julio Cortázar, Hopscotch

1. cortázar’s first page reveals the order in which he would like to be read, but of course, that’s all a part of his great game. 2. a mind opening and closing like a wet umbrella. 3. in between two croissants he tells me a whole chunk of my life, though i have to remember it is his life, his concept of time, of love. 4. la maga reminds me of a girl called molly who liked to count the number of times i mentioned a color within the passages i had written: 4 blacks, 3 yellows, 1 red, 1 cream colored balcony, if you must know. like some creepy emptyminded psychiatrist — in her hands — my submissions became a sort of rorschach test i wasnt even aware i was taking. la maga annoys me. la maga intrigues me. she is the kind of woman bored men like. i see through her. why can’t horacio? i keep reading. molly’s voice in my head is one i like to stab in the eyes before i begin to write. 5. maybe this is all a pack of lies made true? or was it a pack of truths made into lies? 6. sentences that don’t make sense but do. 7. hopscotch is the title of a song björk would sing; simultaneously ethereal and familiar. 8. possibilities, possibilities. this is a book of possibilities. what book isnt a book of possibility? its existence once an improbability. 9. part freestyle, part personal pulse. 10. i want to underline it all. it makes me want to get close to myself, so close that i begin to separate from the self inside myself inside myself.