BY: MARYAM SHAIKH, M.B.B.S., BATCH XXII
Early morning; the sun hasn’t even dawned yet,
And a mother is kissing her child, sending her heart off to school.
A father drops off his child on the way to work,
Working for the child he will never see again.
Midday, and the first bomb is blown,
The first shots fired,
There is confusion, there is fear, there is chaos.
And these innocent children are fighting for their lives.
Them, who do not know of jealousy, of evil, of malice,
They, who are nothing, but young dreamers,
They, who haven’t even seen their own country, let alone the rest of the world,
It is them, who now, are dying.
Dying, and for what?
For some measly act of revenge?
Their fathers are out there, risking their lives for all of us,
And they are the ones who pay?
The same mother, now struck with panic and shock,
Hoping against hope that her son was safe.
That same father, how back at the school,
So close to the scene yet unaware; unaware that his son lay in there, still.
His best friend, also shot, now writhing in pain,
And all he wants to do is scream;
Scream out for help, for his friend, for all of this to just end!
But all he feels is fear. And fear.
Tiny hearts, beating one second but not the next.
Tiny minds, terrified, paralyzed.
One hundred and forty-one lives, gone.
One hundred and thirty-six children, gone.
But it isn’t just the lives lost that we mourned.
It was the innocence lost. The potential.
The children who watched their friends and teachers die,
Who came closer to death than they’d ever imagined.
But it is all these children, who give us hope.
It is the survivors, who went back to school,
Braver than ever;
Now fighting back, not with arms but with their brains.
It is them, dead or alive, for whom we stand up today;
No more lives will be lost.
It is them, who inspire us, despite all that they’ve faced,
And them, who are the real heroes of our land.
About the author: An avid avoider of social interaction and the spectrum of human emotions, Maryam enjoys working out in her free time, a hobby that only comes second to her love of eating.