The Long Walk

Wires connect us, straps bind this burden around my shoulders, my left hand cradles this manufacturer of white noise. Morning's darkness closes about me, each step upon this wet pavement draws me closer, only man's light skips reflected at my feet. My name is Ibrahim and my life is the five pillars. My friend wait, listen, words are precious.

The grilled gates of the tube are open and I step through, descending down. On the platform cued air molests my quilted form, eagerly foraging through every crease, caressing that which I carry. I step into the bright aluminium coffin, yellow polls and weary fabric. Recorded female makes announcement and we jerk onwards. Just a few sullen faces now, heavy of eye, hair at war, almost unaware in daydream's twilight, automatons. Soon we will reach life's destination, a great wave in a busy water.

Why would I be this messenger my friend? Do you think I am different from you? If you were a crying voice, unheard in the vast darkness, would you not scream?

Aluminium doors slide open and I step through. Faces pass me, young and sure, wise and hopeful, their number increasing. I wonder for their parents, their children, who do they share these lives with? What is my right? To deprive from so many, not only those stood within a screams echo.

Morning's cold air embraces me. Grey prevails, pink and orange mingle hopeful in the far cloud. Just two more streets then down to destination's finale. So many people, all homo sapien wearing different coloured skin, draped in clothes that speak of far off lands, and of here.

One last step, I look back, goodbye for this time.

Would this be a life's ambition? To leave a lonely wife, my beautiful! Whose hands I still feel cradling my face, tears dripping from her porcelain chin. DO you think I would make lonely my wide-eyed angels, deprive them of this frame for which they climb and laugh, secure. A sound that torments now. I squeeze onto the platform, my manufacturer of white noise clasped tenderly in my hand.

Our voice needs to be heard, to shake these from their slumber and bellow 'Wake UP! Pay Attention!' I know what I do will be contorted by screens emblazoned; 'war on terror'. My friend! A few will look up, they will pay attention and wonder 'why?' Look beyond the brainwashed faces contorted over burning flags, past the misinterpreted words of our great prophet spat by men with close eyes and faces framed by chaotic fluff. 'This is bad!' You say so! Well ask yourself my dear lady, why is it you have a voice in this very country? Do you think this happened by chance? What about your Christian neighbours of Ireland, sitting in your parliament? They are valid voice for a nation, soldiers that fought a bloody war, blood spilt for this voice. Do not believe all you have been told!

I have trouble getting into this coffin, so many people. Sharp suits and disinterested faces, I move to the centre of this place. All manner of skin in here, eyes scan the written word, upturned faces unaware. This is at an end.

Submission: 5 November 2006
Revision: none