My hands are cold and wounded.
My feet are bare.
My clothes are old and rotten.
My cheeks are crevices for my tears
My heart is broken.
My pains are uncountable.

Whose fault is it—
me or my destiny?
Joy, affection, kindness
school, bread, and love
are dreams and phantoms.

No one is kind now
even time, weather, and earth’s cold weather
are symbols of indignation
for me and my family.
I am sad when I wonder:

what will my family eat?
how will they warm the house?
how will my father provide school clothes
for my siblings now he is unable to work?

I wish life was not hard
I wish

a warm house
tranquility, a morsel of bread,
and good memories

were our destiny.
Neither are now or in my dreams

I will never give up.
I will be like spring
and green all the places again.
I will fight against my destiny
until our faces smile.
I will make good memories of life
and opportunities for education
I promise these will not be just dreams
but will become true.

By Zahra A.

Photo: Qais Usyan/AFP/Getty Images