Thu, 15 December 2016
Yalda, which means birth, is a Syriac word imported into the Persian language. It is also referred to as Shab-e Chelleh, a celebration of winter solstice on December 21--the last night of fall and the longest night of the year.
Shakila Azizzada was born in Kabul in Afghanistan in 1964. During her middle school and university years in Kabul, she started writing stories and poems, many of which were published in magazines. Her poems are unusual in their frankness and delicacy, particularly in the way she approaches intimacy and female desire, subjects which are rarely addressed by women poets writing in Dari.
The poem is read first in English translation by Mimi Khalvati and then in Dari by Shakila. If you enjoy this poem and would like to find out more about Shakila Azizzada and all the other poets we’ve translated, please visit our website www.poetrytranslation.org