The Little Girl in Athens

I recently saw a photo of a young migrant girl, standing in Athens, Greece, wearing a dirty hoodie and a towel around her neck. It was in one of those articles that lists the most powerful images of the week. Some of these photos are supposed to make us smile, others are supposed to make us feel sad, but I don’t know if any of them are supposed to make us feel how I felt. Because I felt helpless. I was looking at this tiny girl, less than half my age, with the entire world before her, just out of reach. Many of us have heard about the immigration crisis in Greece at the moment. The migrants haven’t enough food, they haven’t enough shelter. What are they going to do? But more importantly than that, what are we going to do? It isn’t enough to sit in our houses and feel sorry for the refugees. It isn’t enough for us to watch the news and discuss with each other the horror of what’s going on. We need to do more. So that’s what I’m proposing. Because I have an idea.

We’re going to write a book. You. Me. All of us. We’re going to write a book of beautiful things.

Because what made me feel helpless when I looked at this little girl wasn’t because there was nothing I could do to help. We can always find some way to help. It was because it felt as though there was nothing I could do to put the sunshine back in her eyes.

Write a short story about something beautiful. Something you have seen. Something you have felt. Send it to me.  I’ll write my own and post them here for everyone to see. If you want, I will post your story as well. Perhaps, if you are artist, paint a picture; a photographer, take a photograph. If you prefer to write poetry then send me a poem. This is a going to be a book of beautiful anythings and everythings.

And then I’ll compile our stories, poems, pieces of art and create the Book of Beautiful Moments. It will get published; I will make sure of that. The money we make from this book will go towards funding the organisations providing food and shelter for the migrants. It might not be a huge step, but it will be one in the right direction.

There is too much war and horror in this world. It seems that somewhere along the line, we, as humans, became blind to what is important, and only started fighting ugliness with more ugliness.

I think it’s time for that to change.

The best thing we have in this world is the beauty that we choose to see. That is our most powerful weapon.

Let’s use it.


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