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If only for today I would remove my mask and shout

April 17, 2003
The Iranian

The tear drops fall down along the collar of my sweater as I wipe away at them with a free hand and raise the stereo volume louder. The car is whizzing past broken twigs and fallen angels, layed tattered against the side of the road after the storm.

When the winds came, they didn't ask me if I was ready. They didn't know I had finals or that I needed a job. They just began to blow. First, it all started with a slow and steady moan, as the leaves crushed against each other all around me...

I listen to the words as they fill the four-door Toyota, "Mikhaam hamin taraanaro, roo sahne faryaad bezanam / neghaabamo paare konam, jaaye khodam daad bezanam..."

I once again wipe away at the tears, my nails replace my gentle fingertips, scraping at my eyes, leaving a scorched mark of red in their aftermath. The road winds into oblivion as the raindrops crash against my windshield.

"Ay baazigar, gerye nakon, maa hamamoon mesle hamim... Sobhaa ke az khaab paa mishim, neghaab roo soorat mizanim..."

The rains cease to pound as I get to the end of the road. It used to be a dead end, a cliff's edge that led to the darkness below it. I had almost been ready to fall into darkness. But my foot turned into lead, hitting along the brakes as I screeched to a quiet stop. No one was around me. If I had gone over, no one would have found me.

I sat there for hours, the song replaying itself over and over in my head even though there was no stereo on. I blinked at first when I saw it, not believing that moments like these were meant for people like me. I wiped away the water in front of me and stared at the sky, in search of an answer.

The colors shined down on me; ROY G BIG, the colors of the rainbow. I wondered if there was really a leprachaun at the top, ready to skittle his way down the ledge. I didn't really need to think about it. Today, if only for today, life would be beautiful. I would change my CD and listen to mindless pop music. I would quit driving to and from places and I would stop, get out of my car, and see the life around me that I am constantly passing by.

Today, if only for today, I would stop being so scared, remove my mask and shout out to the world, "I am in love.." And there would be no one to pinch me...

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By Assal Badrkhani





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