19 May 2007 04:26


  • Title: [SW Country] (Ali Mohamed. and Lula Adam) Somali Youth Perspective 
  • Posted by/on:[AMJ][Tuesday, Sept.5, 2000]

By: Ali Mohamed (wrote the story) and Lula Adam read with him..
Somali Youth Perspective
1999, Ottawa Ontario
Presented at SY's Leadership Forum for Peace and Development July
2-3,1999)sponsored by Som-can Institute for Research and Development (SCIRD).

Now that I am bit older and wiser,
I've learned that life's tribulations that hit you
like patches of dark night will only make you stronger.

They say success is the journey, and what a journey I have been through.
Born and raised in a small village in Somalia, I was a happy little kid
with no problems and no worries. I use to dream of sitting on top of a
mountain drinking milk and tea, having trees filled with fruits and flowers
surrounding me, singing with birds and butterflies in beautiful harmony.
But the big oak tree that I played under never told me the journey that
lied ahead.  The green grass, and the rhythmic pattern of the far away
hills, and even the soothing feeling of a cool African night all told me
lies of a life, they painted pretty and nice.

In search of a better life and a vision of prosperity my family moved to
Mogadishu.  But like fire to propane hatred ignited a civil war that
exploded in all directions.  My journey has now taken its first steps, and
even if I tried I couldn't stop it.  With a blink of an eye my world was
covered in darkness.  Memories will not allow me to forget the day that I
got lost and in my search my father died in the crossfire.  My virgin eyes
were not ready to see the sight of blood let alone my father's dead body.

The journey has now turned bitter.  I couldn't find my mother and my
siblings.  And my mind now and then on its own puts the image of my father
in front of my eyes. And with each image I realize that taking his presence
for granted was wrong, cause ever since the good Lord took him my nights
became so long, days filled with laughter became so sad, and I can't seem
to forget the good times that we had.

Now I am on my own, pain rips at my heart with its claws trying to expose
my soul.  I scream out in anger, pain, and sorrow, but darkness chokes
every ray of hope. My grief spills out upon the earth as endless as this
journeys it self.  I wandered the streets like a wild animal, eat other
people's trash and slept in a battle zone.  I survived by saluting those at
night that band and loot.  At this point if I had known the path my life
was heading towards I would have ended things a while ago, I hated waking
up in the morning and prayed every night to remain asleep.  So badly I
craved to end the misery.  If success was the journey, I'd rather not be
successful at all.

I was found by an organization for homeless children who set me up with a
Somali family.  They brought me over to Canada, and kicked me out my first
year.  They said I was grown and that it was time for me to take care of
myself.  Too many things in my life turned out to good to be true, every
time something felt perfect things got in the way.  I was all alone again.
But this time the journey throws me off a cliff and left me to die.
I joined a gang for reasons you will never understand, and got addicted to
drugs.  I became violent and never really cared too much about anything as
long as I had my knife by my side. I kept on playing a game in which the
rules kept changing on me.  I was in and out of jail with no goals or
ambitions.  I went through a constant battle between good and bad and at
the end of each day it seemed like evil had claimed another victory.  You
and I both know that sometimes you lose yourself in this world and your
shadow deepens even more left only with endless distractions, intellectual
dialogues that go nowhere and a suffocating reasoning of what is right and
what is wrong.  I was singing a sad song that nobody heard but me. And like
a bird locked in a cage, I put on a fake smile so people wouldn't know the
hell that I was living.  My weak heart at times made it hard to breathe and
my lost soul found comfort in sadness.  Its truly beyond me why I put
myself in harms away again and again but at this point of the journey I was
in too deep.  I always felt however, that this life style was not my
destiny and that I had one foot in greatness.  I had a heart darkened by a
journey but ready to love again.  I read in a book once that said:

" Love made a body of dust soar above the heavens,
   it even excited the mountains and they danced,
   the intense love of the beloved descended
   on the lover with same intoxicating influence
   that caused a man to fall down fainting."

And in haste I forgot that this love requires growing. Instead sadness
engulfed my heart and tears broke open like a dam, pouring out through
channels I never knew existed.  I cried a thousand tears but with each tear
had a thousand wishes.  And like a full moon in a clear night it finally
dawns on me that things in my life had to change for my survival.

Like my friend said, I was no longer going to let my life be subservient
to street predicaments, my success was eminent. So I got up and dusted
myself off.  I found strength in my beliefs and inspiration in my father.
My faith became strong like the pyramids and deep like the river Nile. And
finally my anguished soul found the answers to its questions. The long
journey has now come full circle, I went back to high school and graduated,
and I'm getting married in two years with a year left in University.  I
work to support my mother and siblings whom I have found and are back home.

I have come to the understanding that in life the hand you play is dealt to
you by your creator, my better judgement opened up my heart and eradicated
my sadness.  Something deep in my soul tells me that I am going to make the
right choices from now on.

"For whom ever  God (Allah) guides non can lead astray and whom ever God
(Allah) leads astray non can guide." (Prayer)

I have surrounded myself with righteous people who with a cacophony of
voices whisper harmony and goodness into my soul.  I found hope in prayer
and all of a sudden I don't feel alone anymore. Never should I forget the
actions that destroyed what my heart achieved or the images that covered
what soul believed.  I have hurdle over obstacles and ran through fear.  I
can now look the world in the eyes and say.  "You may look at me with your
evil eyes, you may manipulate me with your wicked lies but just like Mayo
Angelo I still rise."

I said: Now that I am bit older and wiser,
I've learned that life's tribulations that hit
you like patches of dark night
will only make you stronger


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