décembre 2nd, 2012

by Rachid Filali

Filali : Your husband is an intellectual celebrity. What beautiful memories
do you keep of this great man?

Tassi : Ivano Bambini is an example for the future generations. “His generation” is not born yet. Perhaps it was born in the countries of the Arab Spring? One of the politicians that he called, smiling, “VIP”, or “Philosopher” (in Bambini’s language ,one that talks and nothing else) once told me that he had never met such a methodical, systematic mind, as that the “Poet of the Software”; another definition of Ivano, by some Italian computer programmer who saw him in action. Yes, he was a new intellectual of Foucault, the engineer of the mind.

He had something both of Gates and Jobs, but he was Bambini, one who wanted to give the huge power of the software to everyone, not to the politicians “as foundation creme”. This is how he joked!

About me, that I met him when I was almost a child, and followed him forever: “You’re a great artist, that doesn’t want to do anything else, but at least do something about this! Otherwise what kind of artist are you?”
This was Ivano. This poor Italy really needs him!

Speaking for myself, I will remember every single moment of the enormous time frame I spent with him. And while I’m writing this, I realize that a part of me IS HIM. His left hand, because I write with the right one. I will always remember his unexpected phone call in the middle of the night. He was in Perugia, I was in Rome.
I was working on “MANDALA”. I wanted to work, but I nodded off, while I was trying to finish a famous chapter on the Net! There was bad connection, because all hot his infinitesimal calculations, he always forgot to charge his mobile phone. He used to hate mobiles,he only loved computers, possibly desktop computers, and websites,not blogs or social-networks. He said that “websites are a different matter.” He always wished me to have more and more websites!

It seems that after many “Fuck you!” someone reads you”, he told me, laughing at my anxiety as he often did.
And the thing he said later, made me go mad, because I thought he was making fun of me!
“Listen! Do you want the address, so you talk to each other, or do u believe it?” Yes, because if you still want to be a good artist as you are,you really should forget what I told you, because unluckily it’s all truth;bye,Empress!”
Yes, he called me like that. Obviously I did, and I’m still doing, what he told me. But that night I didn’t sleep anymore. I went to buy pastries next to my house , at dawn. I celebrate alone the end of “MANDALA”. As I now celebrate alone the 400 million views, remembering the end of “MANDALA”.

Filali : These days, your own site records 400 million visitors. What do you think about this huge number, and that you are an internationally known poet?

Tassi : I am not a soccer player or a member of the Mafia, but yes, in some fields that I appreciate, I’m known and loved. Sometimes I am touched by a very young boy that knows by heart some of my verses that even I forgot…perhaps in some African country, or India, or an island that I have to visit sooner or later, or the dear Arab countries.

As a strong reflection of the massive presence of the American students, obviously.
When the counter of my website started to rocket, I thought I was in a dream, and that I was going to wake up soon. And I’m still asleep in my open-eyed dream. I like people’s love. Everywhere I love people, not Power, of which
I ignore the heavy presence. This makes me a popular artist, and I’m proud of it.
Whoever comes across me, knows that I am one of them.

Ivano Bambini used tell me: “Hope you’ll have a kind of fame that doesn’t allow anyone to make you a caricature.
It’s better to have envious censors!”But I would be hypocrite if I said that my popularity doesn’t come from striking numbers: 400 million. Yes, sometimes I think that only love creates eternal things. Our “collaboration” was a love game that became a sensational, unexpected, incredible world success. I have never seen such different personalities working together! I don’t know how he managed to stand my romantic lamentation. And how I managed to survive his sarcastic irony. But it worked! I like to write this on his computer that everyone want me to change, because too complicated and professional for me, but without any result. I know that I will change it, sooner or later, but I will save everything, even his last Mozartian classification. When my website will reach HALF A BILLION.

Filali : Who is the new poet Edda Tassi ? Is there a new book awaiting publication?

Tassi : If it’s true that nothing that happens has an importance,I entered a cheerful, silent galaxy, where I’ll be the Italian minstrel that make you laugh or cry, depending on the changing weather.
The world on which we all live is now apparently crowded in geniuses in every sector of the human knowledge, and poets, and artists that associate among them in huge congregations blocking every continent. Actually, this poor planet is unnatural, miserable, evil, without any aesthetic decency.
The Net is removing entire hierarchies of privileges, but can’t delete the human evil,that reproduces as the most virulent virus.

So Edda thinks and writes. She has become a special little robot, to whom life triggered of high-irony electric wires. But the little robot is very similar to the porcelain doll Gardenia, or the rag clown Lutin.Maybe it’s always her and him…Edda keeps aside big surprises, wonderful things to everyone…!I hope to see some of them myself (I mean alive!).

Ivano , the austral Australian, programmed his “Hereafter”…
And Lutin, sorry, Edda, continues playing with words in the perfect Latin-Greek OTIUM (also a little bit Etruscan, of course).

Filali : What do you think of contemporary Arabic literature? Do you read Algerian literature?

I know (and not so well) just some authors from the history of Algeria, those you find in the French anthologies, or translated in Italian. The thing that attracts me is, above all, the tormented lives, the mysteries around this people. Jean Amrouche is one of them. If some Algerian intellectual finds his diary (for the radio), that would be incredible. I read something of Gafaiti Hafid. I like what Rachid Boudjedra wrote about terrorism: that writers of that period cannot be defined as “emergency writers”, because one always writes in an emergency! It is true.
I know something by Kateb Yacine. Algeria is a fertile territory as regards writing. It feeds on afflictions, contrasts and extreme lives. Thanks to anthologies, I know who Abd Chani, Abd el Kadir, Si Mohand, Oumhaned, Ben Sheneb, Abd al Hamid Ben Badis are. I know something by artists as Muhamed al-Aida, M al Lakkani, and Ahmed Katib. I like the figure of Lounès Matoub. And obviously great women as Tahar Djaout and Assia Djebar. I really like this feminine figure and the way she expresses herself! Here I stop, because I would lie. I invite Algerian artists to give me free lessons, and to invite me there.
I would be really happy.

Filali : Who is your favorite Middle Eastern author ?

I read many books, but still today I believe that the most important period is that before 10 years old.
What we read during our childhood. The magic of writing penetrates so much that, if we are lucky as I am, it doesn’t leave us. I kept the majority of the first books I read, Dickens, Twain, Lorenzini, Sand, Carroll, and many others, even less know, that I adored. Among these, there was a book that I considerate magic: “One Thousand and One Nights”. I have many editions of it, bought again as for other books, because they were too worn out by re-reading!

In high school some authors were important for me, as Avicenna and Averroè, great figures, what connected different worlds, contaminating them in a beneficial way,and saving them from decay and oblivion; the culture triumphing over wars and devil. This “ancient” vision of Grecian and new worlds, always stayed inside me, as in my beloved Foucault. He appreciates Arab countries and lived there.This “Arab fascination” can be found in my works, both prose and poetry.
Above all, in “SEVEN SAGES”, where you can find the myth of Averroè, but also in “CATHERINE WHEEL”.
The collection of poems “BEYOND CURTAIN” is dominated by the mysterious figure of the princess Asmahan. Obviously I read Adunis and Salman Rushdie… but as for Algerian authors, I still have a lot to study. And I always hope for free lessons and invites to my dear Arab people, to whom I feel even more close now.

Edda Tassi is the only daughter of a famous farming family spread into many European cities such as France, Switzerland, and Belgium and of course Italy. She was able to draw the attention of many since an early age as she wrote texts that show an awareness, smoothness and intelligence that were beyond her natural age.
The poetess received her primary education in the Italian Salesianes Nuns School till she graduated. She did her university studies at the University of Roma where she studied clinical psychology, history of art, literature and philosophy as well as her existential avocation which was writing especially poetry which enabled her to ably enter the principality of Italian poetry.

So far, she has issued eleven poetry collections and two novels. Now her fine and humanely rich poetry is the subject matter of critiques in the most accredited American universities.

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