Today My Glass Shattered
This piece is written in solidarity with my Lebanese friends and colleagues.
I was looking at the sun shine through the sky. That same shining passed through my window and reflected in my glass. I was surprised by the colour it turned. The glass became dark instead of light. How was that possible? Then I saw the sky and I encountered a cloud taking the form of my darkest nightmare. The sun fled its own extinguishing and suddenly everything turned dark: my room, the cars in the streets, and the hospitals, which are still dreaming of a better day.
I went out onto the balcony to take a closer look. Then I saw that my room was nothing compared to what was going on outside. There were things I never could have imagined happening again. Things that my grandfathers told me about and I didn’t pay much attention to. This scene stood in my head for a long time. Was it all a product of my mind? No, it was as real as it could be. Was this what my ancestors had told me to be careful about? Yes, though I hadn’t believed them until now. The sun could not protect us anymore from darkness; now all days would become nights.
At that moment, my tears freefell and formed a lagoon under my feet, which reflected on me the same sadness my grandparents always relived through their stories.
But then I saw this woman in the street calling for help. She seemed hurt and looked exhausted. Seeing this I went down to help her. I stumbled with her arm over my shoulder towards a hospital. When we arrived, the last words she yelled before being wheeled into the emergency area were “Please go back, get my kids and bring them to me.” I did what she asked me to do. I retraced my way to the same street and found one of her kids, her youngest. I looked into his eyes; he seemed scared, not understanding his surroundings. He asked me, “Where is mom?” But I was not able to explain to this kid the story; he would not believe me, as I did not believe when I was younger. He was too young to understand what had happened to his mom. I did not feel able to tell him. Then his oldest brother came, and I had to explain everything to him. He took his brother's hand and thanked me before rushing to the hospital.
I got back to my apartment. Now I couldn't say a word. I couldn't call for help to repair the gash in my heart. The only action I could take was to drop and cry on the hot floor of my balcony. I only wished to see that sunshine once again, forever reflecting colours through my glass, but it wasn't possible. My glass fell and shattered in the shadow of the nightmare still mushrooming in the sky. And now the scar on my index finger is the only memory I have of the sunshine crossing Lebanon's sky.
Photo by author