Tuesday, January 05, 2016

Solitary Confinement

I sometimes wonder if any of it was real. When was it? A lifetime ago? A hundred lifetimes ago? What difference does it make. All I have is this now, far from you, stretching in front of me for as far as my eyes could see. The past is just a clotted lump that forms in my chest, only to disappear a short while later, leaving me empty and hollow. The future, just a narcotic that makes me think things will work out, that they have to work out. I know they won't, but I make myself believe that, "maybe, maybe around the next corner it will be different". But there is only this now, a prison with bars of silence. I'm guilty, serving a life sentence for a crime I was born to commit.

The clock ticks away on the wall, the days of the year fall past me, one after the other, and I'm still here, waiting for life to begin, waiting for that voice to reach out to me across time and space. I meet friends who feel the same, we talk a while, discuss things. We feel the same way, that life is on hold. We're away from harm, but we're condemned to exist, like lifeless hulks floating aimlessly over the ocean. Nobody takes pity on us enough to sink us along with our delusions. That seems so cruel and perverse.

I sit and wait for that divine spark that I was sure guided all things, but He's not there. He's not taking calls right now. Prayers are a mechanical motion, empty, without meaning. It's like sending emails to a mailbox that nobody will ever check. You know that, but you keep sending them anyway. How could I have been so certain about things when I was younger? That I knew certain things absolutely and felt as much with every fibre of my being. Now I'm just exhausted, too indifferent to be angry, too jaded to think that life can mean anything, that there is somehow some purpose that animates us all and draws us to it. There is only this pile of dirt, and millions upon millions of ants fighting and dying over it every day. Still the now surrounds me, clinging like the scent of cheap perfume and the guilt from a dirty tryst.

You leave home for so long that when you come back nobody knows you. We're strangers from each other, we speak different tongues, and when we see each other in the street we cross to the other side, as if yesterday never happened, and we had never met, and never spoken together or laughed. We just pop our collars up as protection from the wind and the rain, and carry on walking, wrestling our demons.

2 comments:

libertad del oriente said...

Of course, it's no surprise to go these thoughts in considering the situation we Syrians and basically half of the world nowadays find ourselves in. What has helped me personally to understand the meaning of all that's happening somewhat more is thoroughly studying what's Islam's stance on trials and tribulations. And no, I don't refer to random people or even Sheikhs telling you, "Depression and doubt are haram! Get over it." This is a broad issue in Islam, there are many views and traditional and contemporary studies on it (see e.g. Hamza Yusuf and the scholars he refers to). Definitely worth a read in case you're interested and you find the strength to do so. Wishing you all the best, from a fellow Syrian in Europe.

aussiesadiqa said...

This is an incredibly powerful reflection and by publishing, you may find that although your readers may be strangers, you are not alone. In our search for meaning, no matter the privations, our mind is our greatest weapon. Your erudition is poetic and your profound sentiments engender a response. Whilst it may not appear that anything changes, please know that there are many beyond your immedicate, tangible reality who are working tirelessly, creatively and compassionately to make a difference. Keep reflecting, writing and take heart - you are never alone...