Every freedom song
is chanted by a traitor
who attacks her own tribe

Every freedom
is slave to
silly wisdom

Every woman
needs freedom
from disguise

but nudity
only chains her
to outsiders’ grace

Every woman
is an old castle
like philosophy—

torn between stones
and art—

Every woman
stops the world
but cannot stop men

Her sewn-up vagina—
cropped clitoris—
is the blood
of screams

Freedom from god
enslaves woman to man

Freedom from man
enslaves woman to woman

Every woman is
the child of enemy-oppressor

Every woman is
the child of enemy-oppressor

those who claim suffering
justifies silence—

Every freedom song
is chanted by a dictator
who replaces another

Every woman
is freedom in disguise—
a terror song

Bänoo Zan


Listen to Bänoo Zan reading ‘Burqa’ (2:42)


Bänoo Zan is a poet, librettist, translator, teacher, editor and poetry curator, with 200 published poems and poetry-related pieces as well as three books. Song of Phoenix: Life and Works of Sylvia Plath, was reprinted in Iran in 2010. Songs of Exile, her first poetry collection, was released in 2016 in Canada by Guernica Editions. It was shortlisted for the Gerald Lampert Memorial Award by the League of Canadian Poets in 2017. Letters to My Father, her second poetry book, was published in 2017 by Piquant Press in Canada. She is the founder of Shab-e She’r (Poetry Night), Toronto’s most diverse poetry reading and open mic series (since 2012). It is a brave space that bridges the gap between communities of poets from different ethnicities, nationalities, religions (or lack thereof), ages, genders, sexual orientations, disabilities, poetic styles, voices and visions.

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/banoozan/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/banoo.zan
Twitter: https://twitter.com/BanooZan
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/banoo.zan/

© 2020, text and audio