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Digital Poetics 2.6 strange winds by Sulaïman Majali

the breath, always, is a portal

a gasp, a death – a life.

in strange winds we’ve climbed a hill to see a sun rise. the spectre inhabits a device, a glitching distorted phone recording crawling up through the throat of the divide; a cry, a groan, a tired scream, a gasp, an exhale. inhabiting a colonial translation of a thousand and one nights[1], scheherazade diverges to warn us of an approaching dawn, as a spreading zodiacal light sings at 110hz. from here, it’s all a widening expanse; an owl, in a field recording of a spring sunrise[2], looks out at the depths and heights of mourning. we are reminded that surviving the king takes place in the realm of the breath – and that survival is a weapon under structures of disposability. synthetic swift song flocks overhead – we’re sitting, the sky still dark pretty much, and a stretched hum like skin erupts, strings out questions at its borders;

something dense bends at the horizon, towards liberating futures, and in them we’re growing more alive

“this is nothing, scheherezade answered,

to that which i would tell u tomorrow night,

if i were still alive and the king wished to preserve me.”

strange winds was originally commissioned by The Common Guild, Glasgow and was released on 4th September 2020 as part of In The Open series 1, it can be listened to seated, outdoors, maybe 17 minutes before a sunrise.

With thanks to Stephan Mathieu (Mastering), Jessica Hickie-Kallenbach (Vocals), the rising sun of sunday 26th April 2020, Arabian Whispers ASMR, Oscar Prentice-Middleton, Karim Kattan, 皚桐, Scheherazade


[1] The end of the fourth night from The Tale of the Wazir of King Yunan and Rayyan the Doctor, read by @Arabian Whispers ASMR, Arabian Nights ASMR 🌌 *Whisper Reading* part 6, Jan 25th 2019

[2] Field recording of a sunrise taken on Sunday 26th April 2020 from a viewpoint marked by a flagless flagpole in Queens Park, Glasgow, Scotland, designed to view the full expanse of the city in any given direction


Sulaïman Majali (b. 2941) is an artist-poet who brings into play rupturing, grieving and dreaming as methodologies of collapse. Considering art as an already thinking and speaking thing, the artists agitate/incite/perform towards poetic and conceptual strategies for evading empire. At issue in the play is the liberatory or otherwise. Exhibitions and events include: false dawn, Studio Pavillion, House for an Art Lover, Glasgow International 2021. assembly of the dispersed, for The Internet of Things, Darat al-Funun, Amman, Jordan/online (2020). strange winds, a sound commission for The Common Guild’s In The Open (2020). a dream for scheherazade, EVERYTHING HAPPENED SO MUCH, 66th International Film Festival Oberhausen, Germany (2020). WHAT’S AHEAD, WHAT’S KNOWN, Transmission Gallery, Glasgow, Scotland (2020). saracen go home, Collective Gallery, Edinburgh, Scotland (2019). something vague and irrational, Celine Gallery, Glasgow, Scotland (2019). assembly of the poets, a reading as part of EARTH HOLD, Qalandiya International Biennial, Serpentine Galleries, London, England (2018). Mene Mene Tekel Parsin, Wysing Arts Centre (2017). Towards an archive, 8th Cairo Video Festival (2017).


The moral right of the author has been asserted. However, the Hythe is an open-access journal and we welcome the use of all materials on it for educational and creative workshop purposes.

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