I am a girl.
I am a girl with a pen in my hand. 
I write from my beloved country, Afghanistan,
a country with nice weather and high mountains,
hospitable and kind people. Beyond the war there is a
country, an ancient country of culture and history like
the Bamiyan Buddhas, the Friday Mosque,
the Minaret of Jam.
I am proud of my country; I am proud of 
my country’s flag of three colors —
black, red, and green.
One day my country will be proud of me.
Despite everything that happens here —
violence against women,
terrorism, the Taliban killing innocent people,
Peace is not just a dream.
I will build my country again.
I feel optimistic. I am strong, and
I am confident. I am a girl and
I say No to war.

By Shokria

UN Photo/Helena Mulkerns