A collection of Taliban Poetry has just been published, with a preface by Faisal Devji, an assistant professor of history at the New School in New York, whose work focuses on Islam, globalisation, ethics, and violence.
Which one of these two should I do?
I should either take up stones or a sickle.
I am afraid to become a fire and be burned.
Due to this crazy world of yours
Craziness is biting at my neck.
In the past, that was the role of
The wild beast, but now humans
Bite humans. They are not content
With their dignity. Out of their
Ingratitude, they bite the sky.
The book's website, hither.
An excerpt from its description:
Their verse is fervent, and very modern in its criticism of human rights abuses by all parties to the war in Afghanistan; whether in describing an air strike on a wedding party or lamenting, “We did all of this to ourselves,” it is concerned not with politics, but with identity, and a full, textured, deeply conflicted humanity.
It is such impassioned descriptions – sorrowfully defeated, triumphant and enraged, bitterly powerless or bitingly satirical – and not the austere arguments of myriad analysts, that will finally come to define the war and endure as a record of the conflict.