Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Smoke-Veined Flower

Nadia Anjuman was the Afghan poet who was beaten to death by her husband just months after her internationally acclaimed debut collection, SMOKE-VEINED FLOWER (or, literally, "dark red flower"), was published in 2005. (Or, per her husband's story, she committed suicide after he beat her--interesting that she committed suicide by bludgeoning herself to death, since the police indicated she died of trauma to her head.) She was 25 years old when she died.

This page (courtesy Afghanistanica) is both a commemorative site and a celebration of her poetry. Her language is very pretty, even in translation (wish I could read the original). Some of her poetry does deal with the oppression of women in Afghanistan, and (apparently of great distress to her family) some of it deals with love.

For more about Nadia, her death, and her legacy, check out these links.

Her death is a tragedy not only from a human rights perspective because it is the loss of an artist who might have produced a large body of work if she had lived; it is also tragic because (as in this post) her actual poetry comes in second to her story.

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