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

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

A COVID-19 future

Mohammed Arafat | 14-03-2020

I awaken
from a long, deep sleep.
I open my eyes to see the world.
Curtains up,
Window open.
(Inhaling)
(Exhaling)
I can barely breathe.
My chest is tight, heavy.
My forehead hot.
Anxiety?
Or COVID-19?
I don’t know!

Through the window,
the sky is glorious and cerulean.
The sun looks at me and glows.
But it does not smile like before!
Where are the birds?
Where is their early-morning song?
They used to fight over partners in that high tree.
They no longer fall in love?
The once-crowded street is empty:
No stray dogs barking and chasing cats.
No cats hunting mice.
No mice skittering through the trash.
Not even trash in front of houses,
waiting to be collected.

A ghost town?
A haunted neighborhood?
What is the matter?
I am shackled in here
in silence.
Quarantined.

No, no, no!

I wake up from my sleep.
It was just a nightmare.
I am alive, with no corona.
The neighborhood is not abandoned.
But for how long?

Posted: March 14, 2020

Mentor: Pam Bailey


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