She could hear the sound of nails scratching a chalk-board. Nothing unusual!

This was just one of those nights. She was lying on her bed that was big enough to only fit her. She was lying there with wide open eyes as the owls hooted outside of a late hour and the crickets chirped loudly. It seemed like the world was asleep. Everyone but her!

She brought out her diary and furiously started writing.

She – “Dear diary,

The insomnia has kicked in again and here I am writing this entry at 3 in the night. There are no sounds around me. There is only silence. But I can hear it. I can hear the silence. It’s loud and it’s constant. You know when you’re in a place that is so silent you can actually hear the emptiness. This is that feeling. It’s really loud. Sometimes this silence is more audible than the noises around me.

Half the night is over and half is yet to pass. I don’t know if I will be able to sleep today or will this be the fifth day in a row of sleeplessness.

You remember how I told you about those people who live in my room and come out only at night? Their child cries a lot these days. They have become very naughty. They throw my things around and loudly shut the windows. They pull my blanket off and then I get very cold. I can see their 7 year-old girl right now. She’s smiling at me from the corner.


And she shut the diary and went back to lying in bed with wide-open eyes. Patient number 137 in the mental asylum did not sleep even today!



Author: Zainab Haji

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