MARAWI CITY (MindaNews / 23 May 2018) —
You are the Little Baguio of the south.
Your natural air conditioning is one of your best.
You are our favorite when it comes to richness, richness in culture, tradition and religion. You brought us comfort and peace of mind.
You are an example of a variety of adjectives and nouns.
You are precious and priceless.
You are our home, our haven and our greatest blessing.
You may not be that kind wonderland where we can find a queen in your heart, nor a hatter and a flying cat in your land but we cannot deny that you are a wonderland of love, and mercy.
You are devastated and suffering and that fills our eyes with tears and tears that just keep on falling endlessly.
We cannot explain how it feels, we are confused if it feels like cutting our guts without an anesthesia, or maybe falling from a 365-story building, or is it like losing our everything.
We cannot tell what emotion should we run, can we just cry or can we just be angry all the time but why is it that we always end up having both anger in our hearts and tears in our eyes?
We keep hearing this sound, a sound of shattering and we don’t know where is it coming from, but why does it feel so close and painful? Maybe it is time, it is time to tell a story.
It is not a glass breaking nor a wall cracking, it is me who is falling into pieces but I just can’t admit it.
We are scared, we are sad, we are angry, we just wanna cry but we also wanna fight. You are our land, you are the everything of us. You are ours and seeing you lost in a world of chaos gives us this remix of emotions.
Since the day we were distanced from you, we kept on breaking and endless variety of pain visits us every day, but we kept on standing firm because you are holding on and strong.
It has been a year away from you. Seems crazy and unreal. You are near but far away, you are found but you are kept lost, we see pictures of you but we kept seeing a missing piece.
If we tell them we need you, can we have you back? If we tell them our hearts are bleeding will they let you patch our wounds? If we tell them we are in pain, will they tend to us and give us you as our reliever? If we be good will God bless us you again?
What more do we have to try? What more do we have to climb? Our knees are trembling because the math just doesn’t add up. We see you but the roads keep on turning that is why it feels so far away.
Is this a dream or a game? If it is a game please hold our hand and let us go away. We just wanna go with you, we just wanna be with you. If this is a dream, please wake us all up, but wake us up when we can be with you, because we might regret losing a fight for you.
We just wanna be with you, we want the whole picture of you. We pray and hope for a shining you. We are willing to keep on walking even if our knees are trembling already, we will the make formulas just to add up all the math if it equals being with you again. We will resist the pain, the tricks and the endless breaking if it means having you back.
We are not sure when will we reach you but know that no distance is too far, and no time is too long.
For now we just want to tell you
Oh our Marawi! We miss you so much.
Your Family, the people of Marawi
(MindaViews is the opinion section of MindaNews. Khayriyyah Faykha Alonto Ala, 17, is a Grade 12 student at the Mindanao State University Senior High School in Marawi City. Permission granted to MindaNews to share this piece she posted on her FB page on 23 May 2018. Ala, who is among thousands of Marawi residents displaced by the five-month siege last year, wants to pursue Human Resource Management in college).