Creative writing

Snoopy, the miraculous survivor, by Yara Zalzal

Snoopy, the miracle survivor

On August 4th 2020, a most dreaded day, the day of the Beirut Port explosion, my life turned upside down. As I was ready to grab my evening meal at the kitchen, prepared by my friend who happened to have rescued me a couple of years ago, followed by an evening session of belly rubs, the unimaginable happened. I heard some big giant unidentified flying objects which usually pay our neighborhood a visit every now and then. I usually am frightened by them, especially with the huge and annoying noise that they make. But I thought to myself that this was just a regular day in Mar Mikhail, as my friend likes to call it, except that it wasn’t. I could sense that the worst was yet to come and they always say that we (animals) have a sixth sense, and could tell when something bad is about to happen. Well, I was right. A couple of minutes later, before I could even reach the kitchen, I felt some vibrations, and then everything went boom boom boom! Then, there was nothing. All went black, then blank, then blurry… Then, I felt as if I was suffocating. I felt paralyzed. I didn’t know what to do and my friend was nowhere to be seen. I was hoping she would call my name (Snoopy) as she usually does, but nothing. This sensation of being paralyzed and unable to move lasted for so long. If minutes that went by could be counted as meals, then I would say I might have missed 100 meals.

The Mare with no Name, by Yara Zalzal

The mare with no name
They call me Miracle now, but a couple of weeks ago, I was still the mare with no name. Once upon a time, I had a friend and the man had brought us to this empty farm that we thought would be the real deal. Hay, bran and wheat galore, plenty of water, and space to run freely like there’s no tomorrow. We thought that was it. The life we had always dreamed of having. The days passed and every day, we were getting less and less food. What we thought would have been the perfect life, turned out to be all a sham. No food and a little water days on end. No place to stand in the shade during hot summer days and no warm place for the winter. Even the space we had, suddenly seemed much smaller than we thought it was at first. Even when we looked all around us, we had nothing to eat in the natural environment surrounding us. Hunger struck. All the abundance of feed we thought we were going to have suddenly felt like one hundred dreams away. I could see my friend’s bones. I could see him getting weak. His body seemed frailer than mine. The man who was supposed to take care of us used to go AWOL for days on end. Then, he would show up with some food that would barely last a day. My friend was disappearing day by day. His frail legs could barely carry on the weight of his body, until he couldn’t stand no more. Nights were the worst. My friend was attacked multiple times by wild animals and I had my share of bites too. One morning, I woke up to my friend hanging on to life, till there was no more life in him. The saddest day of my life; and they say that horses don’t mourn their loved ones. My body became feebler by the day. The man was nowhere to be found. I came to the conclusion that I was next. There was no use of me being alive. I was going to die.
But, it turns out that I was destined to stay alive.
One day, everything changed all of a sudden when some nice people came to the farm. They put me into a trailer and the man was there. He started screaming and didn’t want me to go away with them. I had a feeling in my guts that things were changing for the better. I felt like I had to go as far away from this place as possible. This man who not once even tried to interact with my friend and me, who not once patted our backs, cleaned our hooves or even greeted us with a smile will be a thing of the past.
As they drove me away in this big and comfortable box, it then hit me. I was finally going to have a life of which every horse dreams. My body hurt and my skin scratched, but I knew that it was only a matter of time before I got better. I was starving and could not wait till I had my first real meal as a horse. A while later, we reached what seemed to be a beautiful barn with plenty of other horses. I was relieved. They took me out of the trailer, greeted me like a queen, patted my back and front, kissed my cheeks and filled me with all the love in the world. I was so eager to finally eat. It all went well and they even treated me with some vitamins so accelerate my recovery. I always hear them say that I am getting better and they even bring in vet for a visit every now and then. One of the nice people whispered in my ear that that was it for me and that she would never allow anyone to mistreat me ever again. I knew I was finally safe. They call me Miracle now, because if my rescuers were a couple of days late to rescue me, I would have suffered from the same fate as my friend.
Miracle’s health state is improving by the day thanks to your donations and we hope to find her an adopter someday. She is so beautiful, smart and gentle, and putting on some weight by the day. She is getting better and regaining confidence, slowly but surely.

Decaying World, by Yara Zalzal

Other worldly beings,
Souls of ancestors,
I call upon you,
To guide the way,
For me and my brothers
In this life of sorrows, woes and blessings,
All at once,
All those feelings at once,
Contradictory, yet complementary,
Take our hand, lanterns to guide,
Show us the way, the way to fly,
Take us to salvation,
To the dream nation,
Through aviation,
To faraway lands,
Virgin grounds, unscathed soil,
Pure un-breathed air,
Lungs to fill,
Ancestors, you lead the way,
Is bereavement the only option,
To escape this world one day?
Seeking the truth, always.
To stay or to leave?
I ask you again,
Is demise the only option,
To escape this cruel world?
Wars, killings and bloodshed,
Are all we ken
In this world today.
Is that light I see at the end of the tunnel?