Editor’s note: Our writer was a child in Kabul during the 1990s civil war when many people were killed.

I remember times when we were together, he was with me in my childhood, the secretary of my stories and playmate in all places. We played and laughed together, fought and made peace again and again.

When he was with me I did not think about how I will live without him.

I remember everything. When I remember the past, he’s a memory, only a memory, and I remember that time which has been lost forever.

Everyone was frightened, aching, and incurable. All the people escaped; families with children with no shoes, they ran.

It was not clear who went where; just everyone escaping and running. All faces were faraway and full of fright, some women and children cried, some families did not get information from each other.

I did not know why people were fighting and killing, but I heard some old men say, “Fighting between religions and tribes is not true. All of us are Afghans and from Afghanistan. We know that no other tribe or religion can spoil our nation. Afghan tribes must live together in peace.”

Kabul in Smoke

All around were sounds of bullets and rockets. The air was full of dust and smoke. Kabul city changed to a fighting and smoking land. Most of the Kabul people became disabled and lost one or several members of their families.

Our family shared that portion too. I lost my big brother, my childhood secretary.

I remember his body was covered in blood and his eyes closed forever because of the impact of a bullet in his head.

He was felled on the yard and did not stand again forever. Our final sight—his body wounded in his clothes and he did not answer my words and my questions.

At first this memory was dreadful to me and waked me while sleeping. Now it is an ache and a memory, but without fear.

What I Want  

I want each person to have feelings for others’ emotions and problems, to believe and respect different personalities without worrying about gender, Muslim and non-Muslim, ethnicity, color, and other differences.

I want people to accept with all of their differences and to see others like a mirror that shows that person, not a mirror of him or herself.

I want to change the world so no one cries of heartache. People will be happy and laugh. Let laughter destroy the problems by everyone’s hearing it.

I want people to love others. No one will laugh and jeer at others’ problems and tears, but they will help others with their life challenges.

I want to see a smile on all lips. All peoples’ hearts will be clean as glass without enmity or knots caused by color, ethnicity, or beliefs. Let others keep their beliefs forever.

Can we come together now to start these goals and try to continue forever? It is difficult, maybe impossible, but if everyone tries in the field of our ability, we will succeed.

What I Know 

I know that life is beautiful and that passing moments do not come again.

Come and enjoy life. Pass it with happiness and without regrets for a trashy life.

To enjoy means to worship Allah, to learn and become a perfect human and be an agent of Allah in our land by helping people, by dividing our laughter with others and sharing our problems.

In time, all people will be happy without fear of the future, and living in the world will be nicer.

By Friba