The Lost Identity

They come in the newspapers everyday

My morning starts by looking

At their hollow expressions

And then those nameless faces

Haunt me at night

The newspaper tells me

Everything about them

And yet I feel like

I know nothing

I could tell you 

Their age, height or physical appearance

But I don’t know

What their laughter sounds like

I don’t know

What sorrow could have

Made their heart so heavy

That the light was sucked

Out of their eyes

And they ended up dead

On a park bench

In the middle of the night.


Maliha Iqbal is a student and writer based in Aligarh, India. Many of her short stories, write-ups, letters and poems have been published on platforms like Creativity Webzine, Countercurrents, Café Dissensus, Cerebration and Borderless Journal. She can be reached at

Featured image illustration by Pariplab Chakraborty.