Ten Letters

And in times of silent darkness, when your name means as much as a tiger’s barely lit nest (and tigers don’t live in nests), It wanders. Within my head. It wanders in different ways and It shakes cells and bones. It is free. It is free and It is grabbing every inch of skin as I lay flat on the bed, in fetus position on the ground, curled in the only right angle. It kicks in the same way waves destroyed every one of my sandcastles in age of spring: all at once, or almost. It is free and I can’t do much about It. It is free and, sometimes, my pillows scream, “I’ve had enough!”

My clouds of thoughts are desperately seeking something other than this ten-letter combination, but, sometimes, I know It is there, yet my clouds of thoughts rain silence while my corpse rains tears. It is free, unlike a cliché monster but winter-like stormy weather, striking the city of love, drowning its towers and stalls with tourists and girls planning their shopping hauls in mid-July, unexpectedly, with no special weather announcement. It is free, and I hate It, but I don’t seem to either deliver myself or fight back because I don’t seem to know which one is worth it, which one I hate most. It? Or me?

It is free and I’m scarred and scared and aghast and beyond range because It sometimes happens to be me. I can’t get out of bed because today, It decided again that It is free. I can’t seem to find the cello’s sound reasoning within me when I raise my voice to God and only in unharmonious symphonies. I can’t seem to feel the blades and thunders around me when I shake a leg and hustle to scribble something before It is free. I can’t remember the last time my lover’s joyfully musical laugh sent shivers of ashes and smoke into my scrambled body. I can’t seem to remember the same tiger nest’s scent perilously flowing its entrée down my ribcage while my heart beats to the mountains, “Help me!”, because It is free.

And because It is free, It brings other letter combinations to join the party, and I still don’t know which I hate: It, Them, or me?

And because Depression is a disease, and It itches places unseen to the cello, tiger, and mountains, they all think I am simply a break away from them, thanks to the uplifting, false-hope better days, when It is still free, nonetheless.

And because Depression is a disease, let me scream that I am ill and unsteady.


Halima Zaghbib is an 18 years old Engineering student from Algeria. Besides her love for her field of studies, she is very passionate about empowering the youth and women through writing. You can find her personally on Instagram here, and her writing account here.  

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