Translated from Persian to English by Saba Vasefi
Reborn from the water,
I am undrowned.
It rains between the children’s eyebrows
and with every drop their floating corpses
sink deeper into the sea.
Among the myriad corpses I survived
their displaced faces.
Her eyes were blue
like a drop from the Pacific Ocean.
It was as if she was shouting
I was here!
a five year old girl,
red nail polish
on her little fingers
firmly attached to the boat rope.
The mothers and fathers,
one hand raised to pray,
the other on their children’s shoulders.
The wave was a dreadful death
rolling towards us;
towards us, whose shore was not our home.
Either the generous sea
embraced us—the banished—
and we could die from suffocation
or perish later from withdrawal syndrome
in a mouldy tent.
*This poem has been published first in the Borderless: A transnational anthology of feminist poetry, edited by Saba Vasefi (edior- in-chief) and co-edited by Melinda Smith and Yvette Holt.