Paralysis

aleppo

This will be clumsy, stilted, contradictory

It’s a reflection of how I feel

It’s my best

I have not been able to write for a few days..or enjoy eating, or sleep well

How dare I, when people are being massacred in Aleppo?

I know that my sleepless nights, my fasting, my paralysis does nothing to help them

but how dare I live as if nothing is happening?

how dare I write about anything else?

but how dare I write about it?

what do I know about it? about their suffering?

I feel Iike I’d deserve it if they spat in my face.

I’m not writing about Aleppo

It’s too huge, anything I say is inadequate, disrespectful

I’m writing about my paralysis

But how dare I?

How selfish to think about myself and write about my own misery?

Maybe it will mobilize me to do something useful..but what? Maybe it will touch other paralyzed souls.

I’m sorry for this disjointed incoherent message

It’s my internal dialogue, spilling over onto the screen

It’s the vicious cycle that has been my home this week..no its been my home for a long time, but like a chronic disease,  like a volcano.. it flares up and goes dormant. It is the same disease, though it has many faces: Syria, Palestine, Egypt, Iraq, Afghanistan, Bosnia.. It has other faces, of other countries I’m guilty of not knowing enough about.…it may be my own country one day. It feels like all these countries are my own..but how dare I say that..from the comfort of my heated home, from beneath the warm covers of my cosy bed. This waxing and waning disease that paralyzes me has been my home since the Gulf war at least. I was in second grade then. I know that I know nothing of real war. I only got a whiff of its smoke, inhaled -moreover -through the privilidged filter of  a gas-mask, something the less fortunate did not have. We heard of war, but we only heard the sirens -not the bombs.. well, not that I can remember.

My paralysis..It flares up when reality seeps through the barriers I build

I know, how dare I build barriers to protect myself when others suffer? -Guilty

My paralyzed state goes into remission when- in exhaustion, I retreat, and bury my head in the sand-Guilty again

My inaction is not born out of no action

It is the result of actions so strong-so strongly pulling me in opposite directions

It tears me apart

fight -flight

give to charity- but whats the point?

anger -shame

they should- we should

speak- but what is there to say?!

spread the word, the images, the videos- but doesn’t that feed into the collective sense of despair and  hopelessness..and more paralysis

How can I be hopeless?

but how dare I say: everything is going to be ok

what do I know?

even if I believe the most terrible things happen for a reason

Can I say that to those over there? who may have lost all faith

Would I lose faith if I lost everything?

I don’t know..

All I know is that an image of child in the rubble..is an image of my child dead

And a video of a girl hugging her doll, or asking where her father is..is a video of my child too

But it’s not

so how dare I say that?

Guilty

Guilty

Guilty

Paralysis

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