If its love at first sight then its true love, at least that’s what they say: unfortunately I can’t concur or disagree with it ‘cos when we first meet our understanding of love did not extend beyond mama’s cuddles and prayers. More importantly on that day we had more pressing matters on our minds: such as where the next meal would come from or where we would lay our heads for the night for the rest of our lives.
I caught sight of you outside your family’s tent, your beautiful doe eyes gazed into space as you sort solace sucking on a fuzzy object, initially I thought it was a towel, later I would learn it was Mr beanny as you fondly called him. As the morning dawned everyone scrambled to gain a spot on the train leaving this transit point called the refugee camp. I saw Mr beanny drop from your grasp, I heard your anguished cries for him, screaming his name in a soul draining voice. I watched as your mum tried comforting you all to no avail.
I rushed to pick him up, saving him just a few seconds from a fate under the rails. As I held him up to show you I had rescued him our eyes held and in that split second a bound was formed and then broken by the roar of the train as it pulled away from the station. I was ten and you were six, you left with your family to pursue a better life, I stayed for I was an orphan and had no one to dream up a better future with.
I kept Mr beanny with me for as long as a pre-teenage boy living in a refuge camp could do without losing his dignity: eventually I had to give him up. I thought the best site would be on the fence of a place that had brought you into my life be it only for a day and a few hours. I always hoped we would meet again and today ten years after that first encounter I return to the fence to remember that doe-eyed girl who made me want to be a hero at ten. I wonder if you did find a better life, did you find love? I wish we could meet again, but then I gave up wishing, for I have wished for many things and I am yet to see one come to pass. Be well my doe eyed damsel …