Deafening silence

Did you hear the tale of the mermaid that left the ocean to live as a human, paying the small price of her voice in exchange for legs to walk away on?

Lately, I have been feeling like that very mermaid.

After time and time again that my excited heart was either frayed at the painful images of torn up students on the streets of Tehran, or just deflated following a promising new student movement peculiarly disappearing into thin air, I decided to join the ranks of my fellow Iranian pessimists and resign to the fact that some force of nature greater than anything I could possibly understand is controlling everything from “behind the curtain”.

So with that, months ago I retired my little paper Iranian flag, and gave up my daily dose of peeking through Iranian news and opinions, in the hopes of finding a hope.

A couple of weeks ago, I heard of the current election crisis in Iran, and just as someone that has heard of a loved and hurtful Ex, I tried to ignore it. I kept reminding myself of that illusive, atrocious, and unreachable “curtain” but Damn it! Once you've tasted the flavor of hope, all reason is out the door, if only just for another fix.

As I sit back here glaring through my window to the world, I notice nothing but an eerie silence. I wonder if logic has finally won over faith and hope… I wonder if far too many people have started thinking there is a “curtain” after all… a curtain that swallows people whole, and behind which you find the prosperity, well being, buried dreams, and exhausted hearts of an entire nation.

And yet I know, what Iran needs will never come easily without paying an unbearable price. And so this lethal silence consoles me yet another night. And after all, no matter how much I expand and contract with thoughts, ideas, and prayers, I am the mermaid without a voice.

So as I observe this indifferent co-existence from afar, I ponder: Is it best to ignore the bullies in the playground, give up all our toys, mind our own business, and stick to our imposed little corner to avoid getting beaten up… or should we step out again and again, hoping and hoping that eventually one day…?
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