Uneasy Peace

“Not a good idea,” David said. “Better not draw any attention to ourselves.”

Theresa buried her head into her husband’s shoulder. She counted the seconds in silence. Four, five minutes passed. The Israeli soldiers finally shepherded the Orthodox Jews out of the Temple Mount.

“They’re gone,” David said.

Theresa’s heart rate slowed and she loosened her grip on her husband’s arm.

“We’re safe now,” David said.

“Are we?” Theresa replied.

David stared into her eyes. “Theresa, there are no guarantees in this life that everything will go according to plan. You just have to do the best you can, taking precautions when necessary. But you can’t let fear dictate what you will and won’t do. You have to live your life!”

David was right. She was just one of many who had come to the City of Peace and many more would follow. Muslims, Christians, Jews have lived in Jerusalem for centuries through periods of war and uneasy peace. And yet, they had all persisted—and survived.

Theresa realized that she had, too.

They left the Old City through the Jaffa Gate. A gentle wind ushered them along their way. Theresa looked back at Jerusalem. The setting sun cast a golden glow on its limestone walls, its steeples, and its minarets. She fervently hoped that Jerusalem would stand for many more years to come.

Dome of the Rock

author
June Rogers is Canadian journalist. She recently graduated from the University of Toronto’s Creative Writing program. Her non-fiction has appeared in Maclean's, Chatelaine, enRoute, the Globe and Mail and the Toronto Star.
4 Responses
  1. author

    Carolyn Taylor-Watts2 months ago

    June, is is wonderful, beautifully written and intertwined with a simple and clear history. Well done!

    Reply
  2. author

    Lucinda2 months ago

    June,
    Such a well written historical account–your descriptions were visual and beautiful–your dialogue, a wonderful device for moving the story forward. I was completely absorbed from the moment of reading your powerful opening to the end. Congratulations.

    Reply
  3. author

    Kalman2 months ago

    This is a wonderful story that threads together history, geography, religion, politics and culture in a complex quilt that is Jerusalem. June’s evocative tale of visiting the Holy City is well-written and a joy to read. Mazel Tov!

    Reply
  4. author

    Irina Yakobson2 months ago

    You chose a very interesting subject to write about. Interesting for me 🙂 Also I like the way you show it – from outside. All the way through reading I was hoping they will not go there.

    And this question has been haunting me for years: ““Why would they want to leave the relative safety of their home countries?” she asked.”

    This description is amazing, I can feel the taste: “At the old Mahane Yehuda market, hawkers, vendors, and beggars clamored for their attention. She sampled sweet halvah made from sesame paste, honey and a variety of fillings such as pistachios or cashews. She gawked at softball-sized artichokes and fresh pomegranates cracked open to reveal their ruby seeds. She drank chalky goat’s milk mixed with secret Yemeni health elixirs.”

    I recognize that exact feeling: “She felt cold in the hot sun.”

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