Let’s rewind back to last year during our first round of English literacy class. I was excited as soon as I knew the theme of the round was about Refugees. According to the United Nations, there are over 70.8 million refugees on this planet, and 30 million of them are under the age of 18. Even though it is just a small amount compared to the entire population, if all the refugees were the population of a made-up country, they would be ranked as the 20th most populated country.
Let’s get back to what we did in our class. Have you ever heard or read a novel Inside Out and Back Again by Thanhha Lai? The author quoted the novel’s description, “Inspired by the author’s childhood experience as a refugee—fleeing Vietnam after the Fall of Saigon and immigrating to Alabama—this coming-of-age debut novel told in verse has been celebrated for its touching child’s-eye view of family and immigration.”. I really enjoyed spending time working on this theme and learning about what happened to the country and the citizens, the hard times of refugees, and the lives of many during the war.
To take the lesson into the perspective, we had been assigned to make our own novel poem. We discovered many stories of the refugees around the world and wrote our own poems inspired by them. I was influenced by a story from Afghanistan, but I won’t spoil the story here, I would love you to read it at the end of this article.
To sum up the lesson I’ve learned from the experience of the refugees, the information, and lives during a really tough time like them made me imagine the perspective of myself (e.g. what would happen if that ever happened to me? What would that change my life? How would the country be like?). I suggest you read the novel if you are interested and below is the poem I composed. I really hope you enjoy reading and explore around in my portfolio, thank you, and have a great day!
(Mimmy = Munny)
My name is Munawar,
I am 18 years old,
And I am from Afghanistan.
I fled because of the notorious Taliban,
Making bullets rain,
Is peace possible with the Taliban?
I was lucky enough,
To live in a safer place,
But still controlled by the Taliban,
We still can’t live peacefully,
They did not allow me,
And even my friends to work,
So, LIFE is like NOTHING!!
After my 18th birthday,
Mimmy told me to go to Paris!!
One day before leaving,
I spent all my times,
With my family,
Including my parents,
And I couldn’t imagine leaving
Every one of them!!
The next day has come,
And I had to say goodbye!
The personnel carrier came to pick us up!
It’s hard to describe my feeling,
Mixed of joy and sadness,
I was so happy and full of joy,
But at the same time,
I felt so sad and sorrowful,
To leave everything behind.
While going to the airport,
We faced the people at the office of the organization,
Asking us in English to test us,
I knew if I speak English,
I’ll be in trouble,
I was scared,
My hands are shaking,
But I pretended to not speaking,
“No…..Anglis”, which means no English!
I was sitting in there for a moment,
I wrote a diary with my extreme feeling,
Here’s what I wrote my mimmy;
Sitting here is not easy,
This is making me feel like once again,
I am accused of an offense, a treason,
Dear mum, these guys have the same rough attitude,
As the people who were interrogating me,
At the beginning of my imprisonment,
Do you think I will survive a new life with such a start?
I didn’t know how to describe my feeling!
I got out of the military check,
But still a little nervous,
I started to feel more relax and happy,
And, even more, when arriving at the airport,
I was given Coca-Cola,
Which I haven’t seen and taste for YEARS,
And it was all……YUMMY!!
We flew from Saravejo,
To the incredible Paris!
And once again, it’s INCREDIBLE!!
I caught sight of the iconic Eiffel Tower,
Arc de Triomphe,
I’ve written a diary to my Mimmy,
Describing the beautiful,
And how Paris welcomed me.
But I always wondering,
Can a glimmer of the light in Paris,
Ever illuminates the darkness of Saravejo,
So Saravejo can be my INCREDIBLE life as well?