A Child Of The Universe by Enock Makasi

 

Publisher Note:I met Enock Makasi on March 24, 2016 when he was flying from Los Angeles, California to Salt Lake City on his way to his new home in Idaho and he was 15 years old. He had already flown from Uganda to Amsterdam and then California. He “was born in a country called Democratic Republic of Congo, 🇨🇩 faced war in the Eastern part of Congo, moved to Uganda🇺🇬 and then to the USA.” I encouraged him to write his story and he recently sent me this poem from his home in Twin Falls, Idaho where he goes to Canyon Ridge high school. He told me: “I came as refugee with IOM (International Organization for Migration) who helped us resettle in America and they sent us here to Twin Falls and helped us with housing, registration for school, social security card and other things.

Don-kun, TUBS [CC BY 3.0 from Wikimedia Commons
A Child Born in the Battlefield by Enock Makasi

He is that child…. and more. The first child was born in the battle-field.

The first sounds he heard were cries from all directions, and the first things he saw were people seeking protection from gun and bomb eruption that kept bringing destruction to his homeland. His initial experiences were driven by fear; the first flavor he tasted was fear instead of colostrum. Fear – the result of war that has come home – made him a runner – not thinking of going back home but of being a survivor. The war was perpetuated by the government, through genocide, to keep the president in his position. He promised peace and justice for all; but instead, there was discrimination, suffering, and poverty among the people.

These struggles leave the young mother of this child with one question: Who will this child be?

Unlike the first, the second child was born during a short time of peace in a hospital with privileges and rights just like every citizen. He had the identity of Congolese, a culture to be proud of, dreams to be a doctor, and hopes for peace and harmony in the

Democratic Republic of Congo. And finally, a place to call home.

All of a sudden, the number of people in the  hospital decreased, the number of deceased increased, not from disease but from the common enemy known as war.

The river water this child drank was contaminated by blood and bodies of the dead.  

He also stole food from those who had perished.

These conditions left mothers with no choice but to run to a different country,

whereby selling human body parts was a source of income.

Civil conflicts among the citizens were becoming commonplace, murder was easy, and again they were forced to move to another country where tolerance and acceptance were still a problem. She wondered if there would ever be an end to the running,

if they really belonged to this world; this cruel, cruel world.

Then she looked at her child and  asked herself once again, “Who is this child?”

I am that child, a child of the universe, a runner, invisible footprint in the sand.

I am a believer who believes that the day I stop believing is the day believing becomes a lie.

I am a son who comes from the deep root of misery,

where surviving is not an option but compulsory.

A child of a universe who has been trying to know his language

but will never even know how to pronounce his name.

Day by day, he remembers how his mother was slaughtered like an animal.

A nightmare from which he will never awaken.

 Deep dark sorrows that will remain for eternity.

I am that child, a child of the universe, a runner, invisible footprint in the sand.

Lisa Ellen Niver

Lisa Ellen Niver, M.A. Education, is a television host, travel journalist as well as a passionate artist, educator and writer who has explored 101 countries, 6 continents and sailed on cruise ships for seven years on the high seas and backpacked for three years in Asia. She is the founder of We Said Go Travel which was read in 212 countries in 2018 and named #3 on the top 1000 Travel Blog and the top female travel blogger 3 times in 2019. Find her talking travel at KTLA TV and in her We Said Go Travel videos with nearly one million views on her YouTube channel. She has hosted Facebook Live for USA Today 10best, is verified on both Twitter and Facebook, has over 150,000 followers across social media and ran fifteen travel competitions publishing over 2500 writers and photographers from 75 countries. She has been a finalist for six Southern California Journalism Awards in the past three years and won an award for her Jewish Journal article. Niver has written for AARP, American Airways, Delta Sky, En Route (Air Canada), Hemispheres (United Airlines), Jewish Journal, Luxury Magazine, Ms. Magazine, Myanmar Times, National Geographic, POPSUGAR, Robb Report, Saturday Evening Post, Scuba Diver Life, Sierra Club, Ski Utah, Smithsonian, Trivago, USA Today 10best, Wharton Magazine and Yahoo. She is writing a book, “Brave Rebel: 50 Scary Challenges Before 50,” about her most recent travels and challenges. Look for her underwater SCUBA diving, in her art studio making ceramics or helping people find their next dream trip. http://lisaniver.com/one-page/

6 responses to “A Child Of The Universe by Enock Makasi

  1. Enock is an amazing refugee student who has shown amazing resilience and beat amazing odds to excel in this country and receive an education.
    He takes multiple dual credit courses through our local junior college and we enjoy his visits to the College Career Center at Canyon Ridge High School.
    He has a bright future and we wish him all the best as he graduates this year!
    Lara Erickson, Advanced Opportunities Coordinator, Twin Falls School District

  2. Hi, Lisa

    My name is Bill Hicks and I am a Vice Principal at Canyon Ridge HS. I am here with Enock as I write this.
    He wanted to say hi and thank you for the great article. Enoch is a very good student and a pleasure to be around.
    He is always happy and smiling. Enoch is very well liked by his classmates and does extremely well in school.
    He is planning to go to college out of state somewhere, but he is reluctant to say and is rather shy right now.
    He confided in me how he met you, so I am sure you understand his trepidation.
    Thanks again and Enoch would like you to please stay in touch.
    Take care!

  3. I love this story!
    It’s great that I read this story.
    Enock is my best friend too.
    He is smart guy.
    Yonas

  4. Enock is a wonderful young man that I have had the privilege of knowing. I admire his resilience to all the circumstances that he has overcome. I truly look forward to seeing how bright of a future he will create for himself. Enock if you read this, know that I am always here rooting you on.

  5. As a teacher, I am filled with so much pride from watching Enock grow into the fine man he will be. From the first day he arrived in my class until today, he has shown what living in America can be for a refugee, the dreams that can be achieved. I wish every naysayer about immigrants could meet this young man as well as other students I have had that have similar stories to Enock’s. I want their eyes and hearts to be opened to the American ideal that this country needs people like Enock who inspire others to achieve beyond their wildest dreams.

  6. Wonderful story Enock! Thank you for sharing with us all over the world. Good luck in all you do!

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