Tea at the Frontier

At the northwest edge of Peshawar is the Khyber gate and Jamrud Fort that marks the beginning of what we in Pakistan know as Ilaqa Ghair, or ‘ungoverned/lawless territory’. This is Khyber agency, one of several agencies that comprise FATA, or the Federally Administered Tribal Areas. The Khyber gate guards the Khyber Pass, several kilometers outside … Continue reading Tea at the Frontier

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WIP Blog Challenge

A new online friend, Teagan Kearney, has nominated me for a work-in-progress blog challenge. As with most of these lovely activities, the process includes revealing something about my work-in-progress (duh), linking back to the referrer, nominating four bloggers/writers onwards to keep the chain going, and, specific to this challenge, sharing the first lines of the first three … Continue reading WIP Blog Challenge

Running Orders

Love, InshAllah

free

Running Orders

“They call us now.
Before they drop the bombs.
The phone rings
and someone who knows my first name
calls and says in perfect Arabic
“This is David.”
And in my stupor of sonic booms and glass shattering symphonies
still smashing around in my head
I think “Do I know any Davids in Gaza?”
They call us now to say
Run.
You have 58 seconds from the end of this message.
Your house is next.
They think of it as some kind of
war time courtesy.
It doesn’t matter that
there is nowhere to run to.
It means nothing that the borders are closed
and your papers are worthless
and mark you only for a life sentence
in this prison by the sea
and the alleyways are narrow
and there are more human lives
packed one against the other
more than any other place on earth
Just run.

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The Courage to Stand Up

"The interplay of affirmation and resistance is the essence of art, the motor of creativity and soul of aesthetics. It alone rescues history, and liberates collective memory from the bitterness of pain and humiliation. It is thus that artists and architects leave timeless and universal monuments to the spirit of their time which no historian can match."