Written and Illustrated by Kurda Yar

When I was little (from a family photo), 2004, Graphic pencils, Copenhagen

In contrast to the complexity of the thoughts jumbling in my head, my immediate new life felt entirely and unshakably simple. The simplicity mainly lay in my daily routines; in which some of my basic needs were met, and I didn’t need to worry about them.

A nesting Bird, Oct 2002, Watercolour, Copenhagen

To have a time outside the tiny flat, daily shopping had become a habit. Frustratingly, I found almost everything I purchased, was wrapped in plastic which also meant more rubbish to bin on a daily basis. Meals were cooked and eaten silently on a candle lit table. Many layers of clothing were worn (with some extra ones in my bag for weather change emergencies) for protection from the long, long winter months. Finally, a roof over my head. Yet, and more importantly, being safe, and not worrying about whether a bomb from a neighbouring country was going to land over the roofs I found myself under. Or, similarly, fearing that I might, ‘and ‘if’’ I wake up the next day, I might find myself in one of the many prisons in this world, or be drowned in one of the cross-bordering seas, or have simply been killed!

My mini–Pomegranates Tree Plant, 2003, Watercolour, Copenhagen

It was a kind of awkward feeling to live with that dichotomy between my ‘inner’ and ‘outer’ spheres. The state of having a whole world inside you which was not only not reflected by the outside, but also rather detached from it. Encountering this new diasporic phenomenon, revealed that, I was again pregnant with yet another mission, which sooner or later, needs to be born and come to life light: The impossible unification of these two worlds.

The ‘inner’ and ‘outer’ of me had become two ‘hemi’- spheres which needed to be combined into one sphere – Me.

Mum, October 2003, Graphic pencils and charcoal, Copenhagen

Nonetheless, were they at all unifiable? Or is it going to be another lived illusion alike all the other listed illusions we sapiens have been carrying with us generations after generations for millennia from cradle to tomb wishing for all peace, harmony, equality, fairness, justice, humanity, acceptance, and reciprocated selfless love?

Would I be able to walk…… tip toe…… or trace the path of life with each leg on a different side? Was I going to be able to ride the horse of life with the mindset of ‘inner- outer’ continuum racing for their harmony, peace and connection, or am I going to end up riding on two untamed horses galloping breathlessly parallel by each other at the same time?

The Beauty of Age vs the Age of Beauty (a Kurdish woman from Iran), 2005, Colour pencils, Copenhagen

My two worlds were seemingly not possible to be unified. For, my ‘outer’ world was not interested in my ‘inner’ world. My outer world looked at me as a 3D specimen of the millions of refugees who are scattered in the world……the burden, an ugly problem which every now and then pops up in the news, but very often hidden in the main media. As if the refugee crises belong to an outside world and they wished us vanished. They were and are very busy discussing how to prevent us from fleeing the wars and crossing boarders. How and where best to build walls, barriers and prisons to encapsulate us in tents behind barbed wired fences in the neighbouring countries without any scope for dignity or future.

They have ignored and want to forget that we migrants and refugees have come from the slums of their existing, past and ancestries’ empires. They would run every four years to the poll stations to vote for the politicians who would promise and work very hard to tackle the mystery of an increasingly global crises, the Refugee Crises: How to prevent getting splashbacks from the bombs they manufacture and then export to the conflicted countries far beyond their bordering oceans? The splashbacks of human beings ……… the asylum seekers and refugees.

My sister Solav (in one of my visits to her in Germany where she was a refused asylum seeker for many years.) 2002, Graphic pencils, Copenhagen.

It is not an easy task to always understand what we human being are experiencing and sensing at our present times. In fact, it is first after we have lived life, and only when we look back at it, we first can understand what we were going through and why we have reflected, reacted or did things in certain ways. It is only now when I look back, I understand why I had started drawing and painting family pictures at that period of time.

The hostility and austerity of the ‘outer’ world made us shut our curtains even when it was sunshine. What was left for us was the waters of our ’inner’ world to swim in endlessly, where we automatically got connected deeply inwards with our lived past.

My sister Solav (when she was a toddler), 2002, Graphic pencils, Copenhagen

What was really at stake was that none of my ‘hemi’ spheres were tangible. Neither the ‘outer’ nor the ‘inner’ world. leaving the ‘present’ of ‘me’ with abundant visions, thoughts, and concepts. The ‘outer’ sphere was merely hopes and aspirations to be accepted and not noticed because you look different. Whereas the ‘inner’ world was only memories with not any actual physical object belonging/ed to the past, to hold.

In order to make my ‘inner’ world tangible, I asked my best friend to send me my family photos, paintings and sketch books which she promised to keep them for me. I missed my sketch books and wanted to regain the possession of some of my scattered belongings.

To touch the gone past, I started sewing my past with my present by drawing and painting family pictures and other objects that I had. That gave birth to a new part of me. It was not the ‘unification of my two worlds’ as I wishes for, instead, I acquainted another skill: Navigation between my ‘inner’ and ‘outer’ worlds.