Palestinian youth tell the human stories behind the numbers in the news

Palestinian youth tell the human stories behind the numbers in the news

Depression is like a cloak

Khaled Al-Ostath | 27-02-2020

I’ve made it through one episode after another, on my own. I faced these demons and I’m still alive, although there was a time when I thought I wouldn’t make it. Suffering does not make people special. But maybe talking and writing about it will transform the agony into something useful or at least ease the pain. Maybe. It’s my only weapon to survive.  

It’s after midnight.
I am in bed
behind closed doors,
under cold sheets.
The clock is ticking
like a bomb. 
When will it explode?

I stand under a
moonless sky
asking God
if He is there
and can hear me.  

My mama calls.
It’s been three years.
Aren’t you coming home?
All she can hear
is heavy silence
and maybe the attempt
at a pale smile.
Someday, I say.

My friend texts to
tell me about her day,
about the taste of a kiss
from a guy she met at a bar.
I listen and stare
at the clock,
ticking like a bomb.
She asks if
I am okay.
I look at the phone and say,
I am suicidal.

My psychiatrist asks
if my week was good.
For a moment,
I think she is joking.
I look away,
tears fighting to escape.
No, it wasn’t.
The medicine you
gave me isn’t working.

Flashbacks and memories
haunt me.
Alone, in bed, I
have to face them,
to surrender or
run away.
To where?
To whom?
Until when?

After midnight,
under the shower
I cry blood, sweat and tears.
I sink in the abyss,
I feel my own absence.
I stare at my demons.

They grin
as I hold
my death weapon
and weep.
I weep.    

Posted: February 27, 2020

Mentor: Zeina Azzam

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