By Ashraf Mbonimpa

My heart is burning like a fire,
that turns everything to ash.
I’m submerged in my grave.
You can’t imagine what I’ve been through,
the hardships I have endured.
Sleeping for days with a stomach so empty.
If I’m lucky, I eat once a day.
There’s no clean water to drink–
danger everywhere.
Sometimes I want to give up everything,
but I stay strong for only one reason:
that fire burning inside.

Sometimes I smile,
sometimes I’m sad.
Most of the times I pretend I’m okay,
but in truth, I’m drowning in deep holes of fear.

What if this is my fate, my destiny?
What if this is the end of the road for me?
What if there is no happy ever after for me?

It hurts to live these dilemma’s,
a stagnant life.
Come rain, come sunshine, but nothing changes.
Is it a new year already? Again?
I’m still the same old bagger,
whose life is like a building collapsing by an earthquake,
who’s tired of feeling lost and lonely,
who wonders if the wheels of fate will ever turn in his favor.

21 February, 2023