Commentary and Philosophy Non-Fiction posted May 11, 2014


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300 Nigerian girls are praying for help

My Name is Saraya

by Spiritual Echo


It is morning. I can feel the threat of the noon-day sun, lurking in the shadows, waiting for the morning to pass. Beads of perspiration drip into my eyes. It is better if I keep them closed--to avoid the salty anguish and not mistake the moisture with hope. They can't be tears. No. Tears are worthless and will only cause me more pain.

My name is Saraya.

I am twelve years old. Three days ago I was taken from my bed, pulled into the jungle and now I am meat.

I agree with the savages. Education was a waste. My parents suffered too much to give me this right to think, to lie tethered to the ground in dishonour.

I heard the lion howl in the night and I prayed he would come for me, snatch the prey and allow my flesh to satisfy his hunger. To die so another might live would be an honourable sacrifice. To lie here in the mud of men's spent passion is a disgrace. I will die for nothing. I will die because I am a girl.

I have no hope for survival and should my body rise from this prison, I shall seek a noble cause, a way to end my life. Only through death will I be cleansed.

My name is Saraya.

Three days ago, I won the prize, the first place in our class mathematics contest. There were many numbers, column upon column of numbers, like coins that separate the rich from the poor. This much I have learned. Numbers matter.

If I could move, I'd count the numbers etched upon my leg. It is the right leg where every man has left his signature. Each man rises and leaves his mark, unsheathes his machete and cuts my leg to take credit for his conquest. In the beginning, I yelped in pain, but now I am grateful for the scars that may never heal--he is finished.

My name is Saraya.

My mama can't read, but I can. She cried, but tears of joy when she watched me enter our school. She squeezed me so tightly that I could feel her heart racing like a frightened rabbit afraid of a fox.

I painted a picture with colours I'd never seen and looked at our village on the side of a ball. We seemed so small, so very small on the side of that ball...

I can hear the river, not far from here and I remember the taste of water. But my lips are parched and I am shrinking, dissolving into the earth. I try not to notice the weight of the animal that suckles me but will not eat. I know he is a coward, but I have no spittle to voice my contempt.

My name is Saraya.

I feel the pain on my left leg. He has cut deep to ensure the memory--scarring the skeletal remains--exposing the bone, removing my last opportunity to walk.

Papa can you hear me? It's not your fault.

My name was Saraya.


Recognized


Saraya is the name of one of the victims. I don't know what she is going through and this is a work of supposition, if not, hopefully, fiction.
Pays one point and 2 member cents.

Artwork by GaliaG at FanArtReview.com

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