22 Jun


She was hopping with her father along the shore. Her father was managing his jogging speed with her. Every time when a weak wave of water touched her feet, she’d laugh so happily and jump as high as she could. They went home as she got tired. Where her mother was waiting for them. She hid herself from her mother and tried to scare her who already knew everything but faked surprising expressions like every time while her father gave his angel a high five and a kiss. After that the family enjoyed their breakfast. It was the routine of every holiday of Khalid’s family. Khalid has a small family with a cute 3 years old daughter Amna and his wife. It was supposed to be a happy family. But unfortunately this family left their happiness far away somewhere in the peace times.

Six years back, the country faced the situation of insurgency and war broke out all over the country. His family left their home and settled in a camp. Khalid used to have a car, a house and good food for his family but now they were bare handed. They kept waiting and hoped that the war would end in six months or hardly in a year. But the dark clouds of war were getting thicker. The country became weak and lame financially due to the war, so does his family like other families in the camp. The age, at which kids go to school, his kids were at the camp worrying about food, shelter and their lives. Schools were completely buried due to heavy bombardment in the city. Khalid’s wife was a nurse by profession at the hospital, helping the wounded people. And one day something happened to the family something worst. A missile hit the hospital in exchange of arms between army and rebellions. Khalid’s wife died serving humanity. There were many children like Khalid’s Amna who lost their parents. The situation was getting worse day by day at the camp. There was no food to eat, no cloth and shelter to save from harsh weather and no medicine to treat.  Life became indefinable at the camp. Especially the kids fell in serious psychological disorders. Khalid protected his Amna as much as he could. Sometimes he couldn’t stop his tears when he watched his daughter with sandy hair, dry lips, yellow eyes, wearing torn clothes and eating 4 days’ stale piece of bread with much affinity.

And then the December of twenty sixteen appeared as an apocalypse to Aleppo. Russian army irrupted on the city like a drunk elephant who was destroying everything in its way blindly. No matter who they were rebellions or innocents. Five days of bombardment turned the city in the ruins with fifty thousand dead. The city became a huge grave of thousands of innocent civilians including children and women. Khalid lost his life in one of the blasts. His dead body was found but where was Amna…..? Nobody could find her dead or alive. She lost somewhere in the ruins of Aleppo like little immortal Lucy Gray of William Wordsworth. She was assumed dead finally after days of searching.

Some say that the voices of the lost children come out of the ruins sometimes like they are very happy and playing together. Some believe that these voices come from Heavens. Perhaps, little Amna is also among them, enjoying the hop with her father along the shore and surprising her mother with no more fear of food, shelter and death if she’s dead. Yes, perhaps…if she’s dead!

Maaz Bin Mustaqeem

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