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The last time I saw you..14 years ago today

January the 23rd 2006, it was a Monday evening.

We were sitting on the floor in Mum's kitchen, drinking tea, chatting and laughing.

Mum would always tell us to keep our voices down, especially when we laughed too loud.

We always laughed too loud, especially at the silly things.

You had on your blue hoodie and hair straightened with a middle parting and of course your winged eye liner.

I took this picture of you, you posed for me, look at your smile.

Gosh I am so happy I took this picture on my Motorola.

I have had it framed for 14 years, Banaz you smile at me through the frame every day.

About an hour after I took your picture, I went to get my coat.

I ran into you in the hallway, you turned sideways and your hand gently brushed my arm.

You said “see ya later, text me” with your sweet Kurdish accent lurking into your words.

I said “alright, bye”.

I text you when I got home, you replied.

I text you in the morning, you didn’t reply.

I didn’t worry because knew I was going to see you that day at College, like I did every day.

But I didn’t see you again.

I didn’t hear your sweet voice again.

I didn’t see your smile again.

I wish I never left that night. I wish I grabbed your hand and took you some place safe. I wish I could turn back the hands of time, just to that night.

What if I didn't leave that night?

What would you be doing today?

Where would you be living?

What would we laugh about?

It’s 14 years today, but how?

Each minute, hour, day, week, month and year that passes feels empty.

I can’t understand how seasons continue to change

Even Spring feels flowerless

The ground beneath me feels so fragile

My thoughts make my eyes sore

How do I smile when I haven’t seen you see your smile in so long?

How can I like, or dislike or love if I don’t have your blessing?

How do I strive for the best when it doesn’t include you? My best friend.

Every year everything I have ever learned in my lifetime

Leads me back to this question: why aren’t you here?

You should be here.

14 years today, 14 years and 1 day tomorrow.

14 years and 2 days the day after tomorrow…..

Time stood still that Tuesday morning I couldn't reach you, the day life became dark. I haven’t seen the light since.

Yet each morning I wake I look at the time, the clocks tick as time just keeps on going.

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