H O W A R D   U N I V E R S I T Y

Faces & Voices 5
An Anthology
of Verse and Prose

the Composition
for Honours Class,
Howard University,

E. R. B

Faces & Voices 4


The Pain of Life
By Alan Assue

      I must be in paradise. Nice warm climate, all the nourishment I could want, and a woman whom I love. My life is perfect, except that itís a little crowded. In fact, Iím feeling a bit smothered these days, as though I canít breathe. Itís been this way for a while now, and it only seems to be getting worse. There isnít enough room for me in my paradise anymore. Iím being pushed out. OW! Thatís odd. A sharp pain suddenly hit me. Hey, whatís going on? Oh God, No!
      The pain is coming. I can feel it. My paradise has become a hell. I wish to stay, but my love and I must leave. The pain is getting worse. I seem to be handling it, but for her, it is unbearable. I canít see her, but I can hear her cries, and feel her pain. Sheís screaming. Oh God, why are you doing this, what have we done to deserve such a fate? Iím being boxed in. No matter how much I kick and fight, I am still trapped. I must find a way for us to escape this pain, but there appears to be none. But whatís that over there? I see a light. There is a small opening. Freedom from this suffering lies through there. Weíre almost there. Ah! My neck!
      Something has slipped around my neck. Theyíre trying to strangle me. No! The pain is getting worse for her, and I am dying. Help us, God please help us. If you are really so good, then why are you letting such terrible things happen to us? We have always tried to obey your commands, why is this our reward? I no longer have the will to fight. We are both doomed. Something is coming from the light. It, it looks like a hand. Itís taking the rope from around my neck, and pulling me free. Itís taking me away from all the pain and suffering; and from her! No, stop, I donít want to leave her. Please, NooooÖ
      The pain is gone. I left it far behind, with her. Itís very bright, and very cold out here. I canít keep the tears from flowing. Tears of relief, and tears of sorrow for what I have lost. Hold on, is that, could it be her? Yes! She made it as well. Let me help soothe the pain we have both lived through. Yes, please, take me back to her warm embrace.
      ďCongratulations madam, Itís a boy.Ē 

© 2001 Alan Assue 

© 2001 Howard University.
(First Published in limited print edition, An Anthology of Verse and Prose, by the Composition for Honours Class, Howard University, Spring 2001. Professor E.R. Braithwaite)
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