The Torch That We Never Saw. A poem by Mansour Noorbakhsh

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The Torch That We Never Saw

(A prayer for Afghans and Afghanistan after brutal Taliban advance while American soldiers and diplomats are leaving Afghanistan.)

The water hit us like the hard rocks. The darkness engulfed us by the violent waves when we heard the boat breaking and we saw the light of the bullets towards our boat. The waves that we had never seen before and had not known how powerful they are to smash our weak body and the boards of our boat, had hit us. We had been taught the water is for liveliness. We were not familiar with the deadly waves, nor with dying in the wandering waters. With the first whistle of a bullet and with the first shake of the boat that broke, we left ourselves in the stormy waves. As we had been told.  We had nowhere but the embrace of deadly waves. And we had learned nothing but that. And only then did we realize what they had taught us was to die and dying only. Not how to survive. On the beach, no hand was shaking any torch for us. Because no one neither expected nor believed that we could reach the shore from such violent waves.

Mansour Noorbakhsh writes and translates poems in both English and Farsi, his first language. He tries to be a voice for freedom, human rights and environment in his writings. He believes a dialog between people around the world is an essential need for developing a peaceful world, and poetry helps this dialog echoes the human rights. Currently he is featuring The Contemporary Canadian Poets in a weekly Persian radio program https://persianradio.net/. The poet’s bio and poems are translated into Farsi and read to the Persian-Canadian audiences. Both English (by the poets) and Farsi (by him) readings are on air. This is a project of his to build bridges between the Persian-Canadian communities by way of introducing them to contemporary Canadian poets. His book about the life and work of Sohrab Sepehri entitled, “Be Soragh e Man Agar Miaeed” (trans. “If you come to visit me”) is published in 1997 in Iran. And his English book length poem; “In Search of Shared Wishes” is published in 2017 in Canada. His English poems are published in “WordCity monthly” and “Infinite Passages” (anthology 2020 by The Ontario Poetry Society). He is a member of The Ontario Poetry Society and he is an Electrical Engineer, P.Eng. He lives with his wife, his daughter and his son in Toronto, Canada.

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Published by darcie friesen hossack

Darcie Friesen Hossack is a graduate of the Humber School for Writers. Her short story collection, Mennonites Don’t Dance, was a runner-up for the Danuta Gleed Award, shortlisted for the Commonwealth Writers Prize and the Ontario Library Association's Forest of Reading Evergreen Award for Adult Fiction. Citing irreverence, the book was banned by the LaCrete Public Library in Northern Alberta. Having mentored with Giller finalists Sandra Birdsell (The Russlander) and Gail Anderson Dargatz (Spawning Grounds, The Cure for Death by Lightening), Darcie is now completing her first novel where, for a family with a Seventh-day Adventist father and a Mennonite mother, the End Times are just around the corner. Darcie is also a four time judge of the Whistler Independent Book Awards, and a career food writer. She lives in Northern Alberta, Canada, with her husband, international award-winning chef, Dean Hossack.

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