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

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

Valentine's Day in a time of depression

Asmaa Tayeh | 14-02-2020


She woke up late, still exhausted.
Checking her social media timelines, she sees.
Everybody is talking about Valentine’s Day
It’s the day of love and affection, they say.
A sarcastic laugh was her reaction
Then she heaved her heavy body out of the bed.

It is Friday, the Muslims’ holiday.
She has loads of undone tasks
To tick them off by the end of the day
was her plan.
But not all plans are meant to be fulfilled:
Some can be interrupted or made ridiculous by reality.

Everything around her was depressing,
sucking away her motivation to work.
She falls into deep silence and deeper thinking:
Why do so many little details about today
make me think we are under attack?
she wonders, gazing at the ceiling.
She ticks them off:

It’s cold and her family members are staying home,
Sitting around, making hot food.
So many Israeli attacks seem to come in the winter.
The loud buzz of drones sends a thrum
Though the blood in her veins.
Her Facebook newsfeed screams
with news of death, destruction, poverty, loss, misery.
But also love..
The same as when we are under attack, she thinks.
The world is falling apart,
but people pretend to love each other.
The word peace is so easy to say.
Feeling unsafe and insecure,
steeped in all those memories,
Grief squeezes her heart and shadows her face.
Flooded with mixed feelings
she can’t shape into words

February 14 can bring hearts and roses for her
only if Israeli soldiers respect love and peace as well.
Instead, she spends this day
sinking deeper into depression
Who understands?
No one


Posted: February 14, 2020

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