My name you forgot

19/05/2017 15:20 PM

My name you forgot

From an unknown prisoner somewhere in Eritrea.

by Kiki Tzeggai

My name you forgot.

The darkness in this place is so thick, I cannot see. I try to keep in mind details of the day, of the week or time. My mind I blocked from the day I arrived here.

I think about my wife and my kids. I left her kind of young and my kids were toddlers. Now I think about her grey hair and my kids all grown up.

My life changed forever and I am not a free man anymore. Neither is my family who had no choice but to become part of my unfortunate fate.

Anything that is taken from a human being can be given back, but not time in prison for crimes that were never told. For court days that were never allowed. That is time no one can reclaim. It is time stolen from my life.

I will never experience my children growing up because they are already grown up. Precious moment with my wife, because she is paralyzed in time from the day they took me away.

I was always fond of writing and creating poems. I would read them to my wife in the field then and later in our modest house in M’Batcalla. She said that I was more of an awkward poet and a diligent writer.

So I accumulated my writings and my poems. Her and I, our souls understanding the underlines of my writings.

My wife was my friend and she said that my writings were more screams about friends that died in the field and those who suddenly disappeared from around us. She said: “how come we fought to see concentration camps around us?” That’s what she called the unknown and unmarked prisons around our country.

One night they came and took me away. They took also the boxes with my writings so diligently filed by date and subjects. My wife fearful, hugging our kids and crying. I am sorry that is the last image they have about me.

When the guard comes to let me use the latrine, I see a piece of light above me. I ask the moon “can you take a message to her?” the guard asks me to look down and I walk staring at my shackles. I walk slowly, my bladder almost giving up and my feet hurting because I am shoeless.

I believe that one day the door will open and I will be able to walk out a free man. I will see her and my boys waiting for me at the prison’s doors. By the way, does this prison have a door? I came in at night and when I look around it looks more like a huge container.

Even when silence takes over in my cell, I still try to remember my writings and my wife’s head leaning on my shoulder. Both reading my articles and my poems. Finally kissing her good night. In my dreams, I want to believe that in any trial there is a way. Maybe someday freedom and peace will be mine.

As Peter Benenson (1921-2005) author of the “Forgotten Prisoner” said: “I have lit this candle in the words of Shakespeare ‘Against oblivion’ so that the forgotten prisoners should always be remembered".

My name you forgot. Remember all of us too. We did not hold any high position in the government, but prisoners we are.

Kiki Tzeggai

May 11, 2017 at 6:56 p.m.

"Of all the forces that make for a better world, none is so powerful as hope. With hope, one can think, one can work, one can dream. If you have hope, you have everything."

" Peace is a wall we will all create by building it brick-by-brick together". (Trade mark)

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