Editor’s note: This poem was written by women during a Dec. 4 writing workshop in Kabul for the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence global campaign. Each writer contributed some lines.

Violence burns like a piece of wood in the wood stove
Hidden under the blue scarf, her eyes are black with hot shouting
A bird in a cage shrieks of danger with no one to free it
Bad, wild actions, not done by a human.

If I fall in love, they will abuse me, because I am a girl
I am not allowed to do things I like, because I am a woman
In places alone I fear a kidnapper will grab me
The weather is igneous, but you have no umbrella.

The girls and women begging make me so sad
Once, they were beautiful
But bad people misused them
Destroyed their personality.

The boys do not let a girl show her talents
Men deny her success
A woman wants to wear red and yellow clothes
But the man does not let her.

By the Kabul writers