This post comes to us from Dunja Cvjetićanin, one of the Founding Co-Editors of be:longing. She wrote this poem some 10 years ago, as a creative response in an English class in year 12. It was found, miraculously unscathed, in a forgotten laptop a few months ago. Re-reading it, Dunja was surprised to think about how strong her adolescent experiences of divided belonging must have been if they made it into her high school assignments – and how strong they still are if she still connects with them now.
A young girl went to walk one day
To find something, that, if it may,
Would help her clear her little head
And help lighten her heavy tread.
For she, come new into this land,
Could not her heart’s restlessness stand,
Nor could she sit with smiling eye
And watch them, smiling, pass her by.
And yet she watched them – old and young –
And envied how their spirits sang,
And how their lives, so soft and slow,
Still made them skip and made them glow.
She longed to be but one day there,
And sit with them, and have her share.
She wished to sit and sing their song,
But knew she wouldn’t e’er belong.
She took her thoughts ’long paths she knew
Yet found them to be strange and new,
And wondered how, things new and strange,
Had made these well-known paths so change.
And with this thought, she stopped to rest
And tried to stop her thinking lest
Her mind wandered to times of old
Where she would into mem’ries fold
This little girl, of far descent,
In deep thought lived. And so was bent
Her life between two loyalties,
And raged her heart like angry seas.
She knew not where her heart should lie,
Nor where, in future, it would lie,
Nor if, at all, her heart could find
A place to still her restless mind.
© Dunja Cvjetićanin, 2017