There is war, my daughter


We are lying on the sofa, covered by a blanket, each at our own end. Your legs are thrown over my body. The windows are wide open. I wait for the downpour to start. You are falling asleep. You wiggle your fingers out of my hand. “Oh no. Maybe there will be a war between Christians and Muslims,” you say to me.

You are my daughter. I pressed you into the midhusband’s arms in 40 minutes. In the eight years you’ve been here, Denmark has been at war. “You’re a Muslim but you’re allowed to be here mum. You are welcome.” Thank you, my daughter.

I have taught you not to imagine the worst and paint a bleak future. And I the prophet. You gave a drawing to your father. You drew an UgaUga that lives in America, deep in the forest. It lives in a den and can make itself invisible. You are my daughter and you no longer dig out dens. And Hello Kitty is no longer your friend. Your first word was your own name. Aida.

Hi Aida, I am your mother. Your home is at war. Again. The Danish flag is the only one you have seen fly. The black flag flies in towns you have never seen. On your birthday, your father and I will wake you with a song and a flag. You will blow out the candles. Close your eyes and make a wish.

In the winter, you ran up the street and made the ice laugh with your little feet. And when it’s warm we use ice to cool our drinks. IS is on everyone’s lips. You crush it between your teeth and it melts in your mouth. It dribbles to your chin and I wipe down your face.

The rain falls through the windows. You have fallen asleep. Lightning strikes and thunder rumbles. When you awake, I’ll have oatmeal ready for you.

There is war, my daughter. M

Facebook comments