Edited by: Maggie Rosenau
There were friends of mine who used to meet up with each other and walk near the river. They told their stories, talked about what happened, shared their hopes about what might happen, and discussed what they might do. I walked with them, too, but silently. I heard them yet gave little attention. I just walked along with them and had nothing to say.
And then, families would bring their children to weddings and funerals where everyone knew everyone and standard compliments and pleasantries are exchanged. And I wandered in and between them all in silence. I watched their faces. I cried if they cried, and laughed with them if they laughed, while still having nothing to say.
My mother asks about the weather every day. Every day she says: It looks cold. I read the news. When will you come back? They say the battlefronts have closed, and new universities will be opened. How is your work? And when she goes silent for a moment, I too keep silent. Then she continues and she knows that it is just cold outside and I have nothing new to tell her. I have nothing to say.
I loved and failed to become a good lover. I never knew what to say to my beloved ones. I once was about to say “I love you.” She stopped me and said, “Shhh, kiss me.”
And then there was one day when a soldier frightened me. He ordered me to beg for mercy then bribed me, shook my shoulder, and shouted to keep quiet. My attention was on his weapon. I then looked at his face without saying anything and then looked back at his weapon. I walked and he lit a cigarette. So I also lit a cigarette and wondered to myself what I would have done if he hadn’t let me go. I am this same person today. I have nothing to say.
Friends have died and traveled away. They never knew how much I loved them. I had nothing to say among them.
This is about nothing.
I have nothing to say.