Dear mother of Ali İsmail…

Dear mother of Ali İsmail…

I know your life also came to an end when your son died. Each morning when you wake up, maybe you forget about his absence in the drowsiness of early morning. Sleep is like that, it makes you forget, it heals.

But the moment you splash some water on your face, you remember. Your heartache begins.

Maybe you have never washed that green t-shirt of his, you go and smell it every now and then. You’ve got a point there; when your beloved passes away, you cannot see him, hear him, touch him. But this smell, that smell of his… That remains behind as a consolation prize.

But, even that has an expiry date, dear mother.

Maybe at every sunset, you bring his voice to your mind. Maybe this is because, maybe, you are afraid of forgetting his voice. I know, dear mother, what kind of a panic one goes through thinking you would forget the voice of your beloved one.

His face is always in front of your eyes. How can it not be? We cannot erase his face from our thoughts either.

His photographs of all sizes are always in your hand, in your bosom. But that frame is ice-cold; when you touch it, your hands get cold.

Even his heartfelt smile does not warm your heart; it is a moment of the past, after all.

Of course, you know he is gone. Nobody has ever returned from that road. You are done with objecting to that. For a long time, you struggled to bring the perpetrators to account.

Once you said, “My son was innocent and was a very good person. He even liked animals very much.” Do you know, dear mother, that whenever we see a dog, a stray dog, we pet him for Ali İsmail?

Whenever an innocent person is accused, we tell them, “Ali İsmail was also innocent.”

I don’t know if we are as good as he was, but we are trying to be.

If there is a price to pay in this world, it is always the good ones who pay it. Don’t ask why, we have not figured it out either.

We are extremely ashamed, dear mother. We are ashamed because he died and we keep on living. We are ashamed on behalf of those who are not ashamed.

What an unfortunate coincidence, dear mother, that Ali İsmail’s life and death occurred in these days when criminals are being acquitted without exception. 

You should just know that these criminals are guilty in the consciences of millions; even in their own consciences. Is there a better punishment than having to live with that?

Justice exists, sure, but we do not live in that country, dear mother.

Are we ever going to live in that country? We do not even know that.

You cried, “Damn such justice,” and you are absolutely right. You may not be able to hear it, but millions accompany your cry. If we collected all the tear drops of all those who cry when you cry, we would have filled up dams.

The system you oppose is one that does not protect the good, but protects the bad every day because of their “good conduct.” It is a system that rewards the murderers because they button up in front of the judge, call him “sir” and are respectful in court.

This country makes a pessimist out of the most optimistic one of us. When we want to hope, our hopes are strangled with a rope. For this reason, we have left aside hope; we are exhausted with our disappointment.

We know, dear mother, that all of your dreams have been stolen, you had only one hope. Now that your son is gone, at least justice should have been served.

It was not, mother, we are very sorry, but it was not.

What do they say? Life goes on. Damn it that it must go on like this for you.

We know Ali İsmail will not come back. We know justice has not been served.

Just like you, we also have a lump in our throats, a knife in our hearts, looking for but unable to find the justice that would pull the knife and the lump out, mother.