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I want to talk

It is not so much

At the end of

Bad days

That I feel the

Emptiness;

It’s the end of

Good days.

 

Days like today,

Days like yesterday,

Days like the other time

When I was really moved,

When I was really energetic,

When I wanted to talk,

When I wanted to fly,

And I almost did.

 

I wanted to talk,

Did I just say? Yes!

Not because things

Were going wrong,

Or because I was chirpy,

I just had a lot to say.

And much like all those before me

And the undoubted ones after me

All I wanted was

To be heard.

 

Oh I talk a lot,

You’d maybe say.

Maybe I do.

After all, I have to fill in,

To occupy, that space,

That comes with the tags

You’ve all so meticulously

Assigned me.

 

Feminist? Talk loud enough.

Modern? Talk like a rebel.

Privileged? Talk fancily enough.

Strong? Talk boldly enough.

Free Spirited? Talk clear enough.

Talk. Just talk.

Scream? Maybe sometimes?

But you won’t listen to those now,

Would you?

For I talk, to occupy the space.

 

I am a young woman

In her early 20s.

The souls of my shoes,

Don’t have holes,

And neither does the roof

Over my head.

I even have the money

To carry

A MichealKors bag.

 

For I am a woman

In her early 20s,

And I haven’t been forced

Into a marriage yet.

For I have had

An education,

And I will hopefully have

A good career.

 

For I am a woman

In her early 20s,

And I will probably get to

Bear children when I want to.

For those high heels

I like to wear to work,

Don’t keep me from

Walking strong.

 

What would I know of screams?

For I am a woman

In her early 20s,

Who’s had a life with more have’s,

Than have-not’s.

What would I know of screams?

I can hear you ask,

I can hear you demand.

 

What would I know of screams?

For I have never been

Locked in a jail,

My friends and family

Haven’t been burnt alive,

And to be honest,

I don’t even know

What struggle for your life

Feels like.

 

What would I know of screams?

For I have never lost the job

Upon which depended the livelihood

Of my family,

Or the house that was the only roof

Over their heads, in a storm,

For I don’t have children,

Who wake up waling of hunger

In the middle of the night.

 

What would I know of screams?

For I haven’t been gassed

For my religion,

Or denied basic amenities

For the colour

Of my skin.

For I haven’t lived the life

Of a second rate citizen

In my own country.

 

What would I know of screams?

For I did not

Cross over the border,

In the dark of the night,

For I did not

Put myself or my family

In a boat, because the water was

Safer than the land.

 

What would I know of screams?

For I haven’t lived for years,

Months, weeks, or even days,

In a refugee camp,

And neither have I

Saved crumbles of bread,

Or lived on two spoons

Of water-like soup, instead.

 

What would I know of screams?

For I have never been strip-searched,

Or whipped, and beaten into a pulp,

I have never had to sleep

Amongst crawling rats,

Or in the terror of barking guard dogs.

 

What would I know of screams?

For I wasn’t born with a looming gun

Over my head.

I did not take any bullets,

Just to be able to

Go to school,

Neither was I whipped

And made to crawl

Into the bed of

Filthy, unknown, bull-like, men.

 

What would I know of screams?

I can hear you ask,

I can hear you demand.

Well, I never said,

I was going to scream,

For myself.

If only you had it in you

To hear me out.

 

I am a woman

In my early 20s,

And I don’t want to be

A Barbie Doll.

I am moved. I am energetic.

Maybe I am a lil too much

And maybe I am all that

You definitelydon’t want

In your daughter,

In your sister,

But guess what,

I want to talk.

 

It’s at the end of

Days like these

That I feel the

Emptiness,

For I can see my words

Falling, cracking, breaking down,

After they hit every wall,

Every surface of every eardrum,

That they fall upon.

 

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