Yes, We Are Afghan Children

We are butterflies concealing our beauty
We are pale flowers locked in our fragrance
We are stars in the sky without the light of the moon
We are clouds darkly holding heaven’s waters
Yes, we are Afghan children
We are deprived of the pleasures of childhood
—the toys, the laughter, the freedom
We are orphaned children longing for family
Some living without mothers, some without fathers
We are orphaned children desiring kisses from parents who have disappeared
Explosions are the music of our lives
We are orphaned children existing inside cold, cramped tents
We are orphaned children working to feed our families
Working with tiny, cold hands
Hands aching during the night
Hands begging to be warm
During every second we breathe, loud voices escape
We want life, happiness
—food, toys, books, school, peace
Yes, we still have hopes
It is never impossible
We will be shiny butterflies
We will be soft flowers spreading our sweet smell
We will be the light in the sky even during the night

By Farahnaz

Photo: Ingo Arndt / WWF


  1. Farahnaz

    Wow. The story of your pain and hope is so vivid in this poem. Beautiful.
    Thank you,

  2. This is poignant and powerful. I love the repetition of the “We are” followed by the repetition of “We will be” — which signals hope. Very moving work!

  3. Hi Farahnaz

    This is a great poem. While expressing loss through the hardship of war, it emerges with a message of hope. This is a testament to human endurance.

    Great work.

  4. Samuel Bloore says:

    Dear Farahnaz

    The story of your childhood through your poem, Farahnaz, truly moved me. A childhood filled with pain and suffering because of war is something that should not be experienced by any child throughout the world. We are lucky enough to have the pleasures of childhood that aren’t filled with pain. A child’s music shouldn’t have to be explosions but just the noises of laughter and happiness. A child should always have parents to show love and caring, not be orphaned because of the tirades of war.

    Farahnaz, you show hope through perseverance and honesty. You are testament to human endurance and show that even in a world of war, there is still hope to attain happiness in life. Every human being has an inner beauty that is just waiting to flourish and to show the world the happiness that it can give. You have this Farahnaz, even if a childhood is plagued by war that brings forth emotions of sorrow and grief, there is still hope to spread your wings and show the world how happy everyone should be. As you say, “it is never impossible” to have hope and I just hope that a lot more people can understand this. Thank you for your moving letter, Farahnaz. Like you, I will have hope.

    Yours sincerely,


  5. My lovely sister!
    This is awesome! You are a real poet. You are expressing the truth, and your poem is flowing very smooth and nicely….Love it.

  6. Elizabeth Titus says:

    This is so heart-breaking! And yet… at the same time it shines with the hope of youth. It ends on a positive note, despite it all.

    Beautifully done!


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