I grew up in a Muslim country
Where the culture is different;
Dress codes, cuisines, sceneries, and peaceful people,
Different from your local news' bombing news content.
I met different people at my old school, all of which are my friends;
Of different ethnicities, culture, and religion.
Despite our major differences, we treated each other as one;
We built a bond that is not made for oblivion.
I am lucky to grow up experiencing having a Muslim and a Christian for a friend,
I get invited to holidays like Christmas and Ramadan.
I get to see and feel the best of both worlds,
And respect for each religion is the key to living as one.
I wrote this to serve as an eye-opener
That the terrorists that you see on the news are not my Muslim brothers;
For when terror is claimed in Islam's name,
They disrespect the Islamic belief and teachings when they make that claim.
We need to live in a world where people thinks critically—
A world with no woman with a hijab is stared at disrespectfully;
A world where nobody uses Islam as a sign of terror;
A world with no discriminations, just peace and tranquility.
I hope we also learn cultural sensitivity,
For religion differences aren't something to joke about and be tagged with petty comedy.
Respect is what we need to have a peaceful community,
And if we really want to live in a world free from disquieting thoughts and emotions,
Let this all start with you and me.
(c) Mary Joyce A. Tibajia | 2017