On Sunday, November 25, 2012, ten Afghan women writers gathered at AWWP offices in Kabul to remember the many Afghan women who have been the victims of violence in Afghanistan. It was an emotion-filled gathering as the group wrote this poem for them.

For the next sixteen days, AWWP writers throughout Afghanistan will be writing the stories of Afghan women who face gender violence, offering their thoughts in poetry and essays.

Because I Am a Woman…

I should not go to school.
Because I am a woman,
I should not speak my ideas.
I should not have dreams.
I should not play football.

Because I am a woman,
I should not go out, nor work in an office.
I should not live in freedom.
I am only a woman,
a second-class citizen
who should simply clean house
and raise children.
I am threatened by men,
because I am a woman.

Who was born from the left side of a man?

I am the object for a selfish man,
his toy to play with,
his servant,
his ball to be kicked everywhere.
Am I—a mother,
a sister, a daughter—
a victim?

Who is this woman I am?

By the Kabul Writing Group