The Child on the Way
Jalil ShahCheshmeh, Iranian writer
Reprinted from: Global Seminar of Fiction and Dialog Among Cultures, Farokh Negar Pub., Karnameh, Negar EskandarFar, 2004

Take the hands of this child.
He has opened his hands.
Show him the street.
He looks all around.

He is there. He is aware of everything with his hand, legs, eyes and ears, he hears you under the collapsed ruins, he responds to draw your attention. He is in the bosom of his mother and cries besides her death. Screams.

Now turn him. He is eating a chocolate, quite.
Tell him the names of all the things.
He is looking and saying nothing.
Tell him about yourself.

He turns his head. He has finished his chocolate, and now he is looking at his brown hands. This is not your child. Your heart is deceived in being like a mother. If he didn't try today, he will do tomorrow, for sure, or maybe after an hour.

It is like the sun in the sky. It seems that the voice of death is ahead of you. You cannot get him. The child looks at a dangling doll on his shirt and he cries at last.

Shake it with the finger.
He looks at you.
Shake it with the finger.
You show him the cars.
But his crying never ends.

If you search more, you will find a big tie under the stones. And the stones are put together like a hill of sand. Like a small hill of your childhood, you were climbing and showing your achievements by rising your hands.

Now you remember.
You should speak him.
Tell a story.

Once upon a time, there was a beautiful sea without any waves and she looked after the children. One day, a group arrived and looked at the sea and the children sadly. And said, "You should not play in the sea more."
They all said, "Why?"
They said, "This water is dangerous, deceives the children. The sea should have waves. She drowns the children, with these acts."
The children went to the sea no more.
Since then, the sea is wavy. And the sea is furious and revenges both children and grown-ups. That sea is sad and still furious.

You are happy.
You are so happy to tell another story.
But the child is crying.
The child is upset. This bothers you. And erase the childhood from your memory. You do not remember your childhood.
You are eager to know.
An unknown child is in your lap.
But the answer is never.
A never heavy is your hands.

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