Saima Afreen: Poetry (Voices Within 2021)

Saima Afreen is an award-winning poet who also works as Deputy City Editor with The New Indian Express. Her poems have appeared in several Indian and international journals, including Indian LiteratureHCE ReviewBarely South ReviewThe Bellingham ReviewThe Roanoke ReviewThe Stillwater ReviewThe McNeese ReviewThe Nassau ReviewThe Oklahoma ReviewStaghill Literary JournalThe Notre Dame ReviewHonest Ulsterman, and Existere, among others. She received ‘Writer of the Year Award, 2016’ from Nassau Community College (the State University of New York). She has been part of several literary festivals and platforms such as Sahitya Akademi Poets’ Meet. She’s been awarded the Charles Wallace India Trust Fellowship (2019) in Creative Writing at the University of Kent, United Kingdom.


Listening to Tamino Habibi After Visiting Dargah-e-Yousufain

The night is a voice
in a palace. It dances
explodes in blood, swallows
letters from the other sky

and carves your face
on the timber rising above
when other faces appear
with Nargis flowers
that open their eyes                             

in your heart

to go around the earth
a thousand times, to
smell the light and knit
a halo around the child

that feeds on the endless

nights we harvest each

time the music dies above.

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