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Feb 2018
As I was climbing the steps,
Today after school…
I felt a pang of claustrophobia,
Despite being outdoors…
As I watched the herd of students in uniform,
Both in clothing and in conversation…
I felt scared.

Because I was a part of that herd.
One which mindlessly spent its days,
In accordance to the routines of the society,
Their personalities among other things.

All those kids,
In preparation for standardized tests,
Had become standardized as well…

They were forced to fit a mold,
For so long, that they didn’t have to be forced anymore,
And it had all happened so quickly, just like the way mold covers food,
And it had come to seem so permanent, just like patina covering brass,
Hiding the quirks and the character of the statue for all eyes to see, through corrupting it.
They had turned fit to false ideals.

The stair was full of black coats,
As if to make the uniforms even more uniform.

And even the rare spring-like winter day,
Hadn’t made me want to break the routine that day,
To run away into a field
(If I could find a field in the concrete jungle,
The one that I hadn’t yearned to desert just yet,
Though I should’ve made any place my field, anyways.)
And to dance & lie among wild flowers,
Each one unique and not uniform at all.
Even the trees around the stairs looked one and the same,
But how could the system curb even,
The one thing supposed to be unrestrainable,
The uncurbably roaring nature,
To bend it in its will against diversity.
Just like it had done to us…

But then I saw kids playing in the soccer field,
Not a field of flowers, but a field nevertheless
They did seem to be thinking differently,
Their laughs didn’t resemble each other’s
So it was growing up which had made us like that,
A premature maturity,
Which would be premature even at the age of eighty,
(If it could even be considered maturity)
Which had stripped away our individuality,
And had made us a homogeneous flood, sweeping away all identity

And I still am a captive of the desperation that had taken a hold of me in that brief glance,
I still don’t know what to do,
Humanity, help me,
Aid me in melting these cages,
Through the heat of the stars presents in your minds as well as your hearts,
To recover individuality.

For I refuse to give up,
And to loose myself in the flood
So in my school, in order to reach the school buses you have to climb a bunch of steps which border a line of trees, and it's a pretty crowded school so when I saw all the identical people  ahead of me it seemed like too much and I was genuinely scared
İlayda Korkmaz
Written by
İlayda Korkmaz  17/Ankara/Turkey
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