By Nagham Osman
I listen without hearing, and instead, I pretend to sing. When will it be done? Nevertheless, she spins and twirls her fingers every now and then. Her hands are stranded just like her dangling unwoven sweater. She is my mother. " I want to give it to you so that you can wear it some day.” I think in my head, sure like you when I am a widow.
Its loose strings disconnect whenever she pulls them together. She fell in love and married my father but she didn’t have him forever. Gone for now but one day someone will bring him back to her. She hopes. But, in the meantime she tells me I have to get married soon. That time is running. Having kids is what a daughter should do. Never mind what you were taught in school. “What will you cook for your husband? What will you teach your kids?” She refers to a future that I am yet to live. “You have to get married.” She insists. I say I wish. "There is no time to dream,” she says. "What do you want from a man who is in his 40’s? You are already 30.”
Plaster does help at times like these, or, else I would be spluttering venom that will only lead to a long sought vengeance. Will there be enough time to share with a man? Does he love me? Does he care?
When I was 20, I thought I would be married by 25. My goals have always been measured in fives.
And so she lays her pink sweater the next day and waits for a passer-by to knock on her door. And so she yearns just like her yarn that waits too, to be left alone. She’ll have to go to the very beginning and knit awhile before I am back. In the doorway, I read the text hung on the wall that we’ve had for so long.
Love is lost in the world.
Someday, someone will find it
tell everyone about it. But until then...
The letters fade away before I utter the last word. So, I have started, on a road today. Thinking. I am worth more than finding what she's been waiting for. A man.