Unsheathe a hollow spear and spill from ephemeral streams of blue.
Hold it against me only for a moment to let my skin seize against the cold steel.
Instruct me to look away but how could I do so
having seen the enduring pain of those who have come before me?
Grip my wrist tightly and prick me slow.
As the elasticity of my youthful skin gives way to a single red drop,
remind me of crumbled concrete stained with civilian blood
and soils tarnished with iron.
Do not lie to me.
Tell me the sting will never go away.
Author’s note: Since the inception of the Syrian civil war in 2011, the United Nations has verified that at least 350,000 people have been killed in a ten-year span and has cautioned that this number is an “under-count of the actual number of killings.”
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