Like restless dreams

I should know better than to look at social media on my phone while still half asleep in bed in the morning. But I do sometimes, probably because the intensity of the collective pain to be found there helps to efface my own restless, anxious dreams. Sometimes it just amplifies them though, as yesterday when I read a post by poet Sahar Muradi on Instagram (@Muradi.Sahar) about her desperate efforts to help family and friends escape harm in Afghanistan.

My response was to post one of her poems, which I remembered had moved me when I’d read it a long time ago in One Story, Thirty Stories, an anthology she co-edited with Zohra Saed. And I added the poem to my syllabus for my creative writing students.

Someone once told me that I have so many different faces, and that makes me beautiful, that the measure of beauty is the ability to change expressions completely. After Kabul, you never kept the same face.

from “Of My Mother” by Sahar Muradi

Isn’t the point of poetry to know another’s suffering and to respond? I hope her efforts find a good way forward in this dangerous moment. I hope we are all looking beyond just this moment.


If you want to make… nostalgia (my version of gulab jamun)

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