OCTOBERS is a richly gripping poem-journey through lives and languages, migrations/transitions, with profound openness to curious complexity. Sahar Muradi, born in Afghanistan, resident of New York City, employs subtly understated images, reeling us in to woven mysteries of time and story. It’s as if Muradi is speaking up from a difficult, often silent space for those who are forced to flee, recalibrate, make new homes, somewhere, anywhere, right here: ‘this one morning with its distinct wink’—brilliant. I feel I have never read anything quite like this voice before—it’s rare and so important.
Naomi Shihab Nye, Donald Hall Prize judge and author of Everything Comes Next: Collected and New Poems

OCTOBERS traces the four great tumults of the author’s life, all of which originated in that jagged month of different years: The US invasion and occupation of her native Afghanistan, the death of her father, the sudden end of a love, and the birth of her daughter. The poems chart heartbreak along a helix, progressively and recursively, where “echoes are inevitable.” Ultimately, the collection is concerned with language—as witness and buoy in the white waters of loss, as a tool for violences small and state-crafted, as an asymptote both approaching ideas of “home” and estranged from it, and, beyond it all and still, as a source of wild wonder.

72 Pages, 5.7 x 8.7 in.

October, 2023

isbn : 9780822967088

about the author

Sahar Muradi

Sahar Muradi is author of the chapbooks [ G A T E S ], A Garden Beyond My Hand, and Ask Hafiz: A Migration Story Told through Poetic Divination. She is coeditor of One Story, Thirty Stories: An Anthology of Contemporary Afghan American Literature and EMERGENC(Y): Writing Afghan Lives beyond the Forever War: An Anthology of Writing from Afghanistan and Its Diaspora, and coauthor of A Ritual in X Movements. She is a recipient of the Stacy Doris Memorial Poetry Award and the Patrons’ Prize for Emerging Writers from Thornwillow Press, as well as a finalist for the National Poetry Series and the Sustainable Arts Foundation. Sahar is cofounder of the Afghan American Artists & Writers Association and dearly believes in the bottom of the rice pot.

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Sahar Muradi