My Red Eyes

Blood replaces my tears
Blood covers my eyes
Blood tells of my secret pain.
My heart tells me: “Cry
Cry, cry, cry for your country
Cry for your backward country
Cry, Freshta.”
Why?
For its ruined houses
For its dry land
For its illiterate people
For its war which won’t stop
For the blood which spills
For the orphans that war leaves behind
Cry, cry, cry for your county
For the widow women
For the anarchy in your country
For the disunity of your people, which didn’t exist in the past
For the million children who can’t study
For your elders in the government who can’t take care of your country.
Cry for the future of your country
Cry for your country which has rich mineral deposits
But great poverty.
Cry for your land which is like a ball that everyone kicks, that everyone plays with
Cry, cry, cry, for your country
The deep grief in my heart makes
My eyes run with blood instead of tears
My heart says: “You are beyond help
Because your land has become a ball in a game.
No one wants to give up such a nice ball.”
My eyes are having crazy pain
I fear I will lose my vision
My cure can be found in neither medicine nor tranquilizer
I need clear light.
But how is it possible to bring bright light to my eyes?
My heart says: “Education is the way
Education for all people of your country
For men and women, for all classes, for all.”
This answer makes me cry even more
Because it is impossible for the poor Afghan to gain an education
I say, “Oh my God! How difficult it is—
Education for all people of my land?
Impossible!
Especially when our government still doesn’t have a law
Making education obligatory.”
My tears are bloody
As I realize how poor we are after all these centuries.
I whisper: “It will be impossible,
This cure.
I will never gain the light.”
My eyes say: “It is not difficult
It just takes 12 years, or maybe 16,
If your government paves the ground
By creating security.”
“So it is if, then,” I say,
And then I know my sickness will remain with me all my life
I won’t see light in my eyes
I will be dying with these bloody, dark eyes
Which is my nightmare.
And I keep crying, crying, crying.

By Freshta


Comments

  1. Dear Freshta,
    Your eyes see so much beauty and hardship. I am grateful for your eyes, for they help me see better as I learn from you.
    Love, Rachel

  2. Thank you Freshta for your words and helping me, a journalist from the “old media,” to more appreciate how the internet has provided a way for all women to finally share their powerful and graceful thoughts with a world that so needs to hear them.

  3. Elisabeth Lehr says:

    Freshta, as I am going through the website I came across this poem. It is so beautiful and breaks my heart, but then I must smile. I remember when you came to my home with your red eyes. You were feeling so much discomfort, and yet you were so delightful and lovely that evening.

    I cherish this memory.

    Love Elisabeth

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