I Am a Girl


Editor’s note: This poem was written for International Day of the Girl, October 11, 2013.

Born in Afghanistan,
I am a girl, a dream
for my mother, but not
for my father.
My mother wants
to send me to school.
My father wants
to sell me for dollars.
I am a girl, a support for my mother,
a girl—shame for my father.
She kisses me—he beats me
for small mistakes.
She encourages me to work on my studies.
He stops me going to school.
I am a girl, who does not know
which identity is the one for me.
I think about being a doctor,
want to be free.
I am a girl who wants to drive when I turn 18,
determine my own future,
not be punished for my gender. I want
to be a leader in my community.
I am a girl with thousands of wishes,
a girl with lots of pain in her heart,
a girl with hopes and dreams.
I am a girl—human.
I am the future’s mother.

By Seeta


  1. Your poem rings so true, Seeta. It is hard to find our identity but you are indeed the “future’s mother” and a wonderful poet, Susan

  2. I agree with Susan: you *are* the future’s mother and a leader in your community. What a powerful poem, Seeta. All girls deserve a life of loving support, where they are not seen as problems, where they are appreciated for the unique souls that they are. Thank you for saying so much so eloquently. Stacy

  3. It is a true and very true poem.

    It talks from the heart of thousands of Afghan girls.
    Thanks for writing it!

  4. Nancy Antle says:

    Seeta — So happy to see your strong poem on the blog! The contrast between what the father and the mother want for their daughter — and the daughter’s torment is heartbreaking. You are truly a leader and I applaud your writing about such difficult topics. You are indeed, “the future’s mother!” Nancy

  5. Seeta, Your beautiful and powerful poem expresses just a few of your “thousands of wishes,” but by putting them on the page in words, you have already begun to make them come true, not only for yourself but for others as well. As a daughter, a poet and a person of many dreams, you truly are “the future’s mother.” Thank you for your poem and for putting your wishes into words.

  6. I find your poem very beautiful and very true, Seeta. Keep writing – and follow your dreams.

  7. Allow Dreams to write and then built in courage …Every strength you put in to defeat abuse is your way of saying you belong to one of “us”never give up your dreams,rather be brave …no matter what happens don’t settle to be beaten up.. If you can write , you can also read, educate yourself and win yr battle my friend.. My sincere wishes are always with you !!

  8. Cassandra says:

    It’s sad to think girls in Afghanistan and many other countries are scorned for just being girls. You have so much talent Seeta, your poem makes me angry and proud at the same time.

  9. being deeply loved gives you strength
    loving deeply gives you courage.
    — Lao Tzu

  10. peter markus says:

    Dear Seeta,

    Thank you for such a brave, true poem. I’m glad you have your mother in your life. This line from your poem is who you are: “I am a girl, a dream…” Hold tight to your dreams.


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