I free my hair

Rawina Saberzada

I leave my hair in the hands of the wind.
It doesn’t matter who sees it anymore.

You, the people who don’t blink
When you watch a woman’s stoning,
Why do you lose sleep over my hair?

I am a woman; made of stones
And stoned, before your eyes.

I am a girl; made of earth,
Stepped on, before you eyes.

My hair is not obscene.
The vultures who circle my body
And that of my dead sisters
From Badakhshan to Helmand,
From Delhi to Rio,
Are obscene.

It doesn’t matter anymore.
Let me.
Let the wind take my hair to the heavens
So I can taste freedom.
This woman will no longer tolerate the burqa.

You, whose conscience is gone with the wind,
Let me leave my hair in its hands.

Artwork by: “Reflection” by Sulaiman Edrissy
Art Model: Baran Hashemi
Read this poem in Persian here. 

Rawina Saberzada

Rawina Saberzada

Rawina Saberzada is finishing up high school in Balkh and hopes to become a dentist one day. When she is not studying or writing for Free Women Writers, she enjoys watching movies and riding her bike.
Rawina Saberzada

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Daughters of Rabia is a collection of Afghan women's writings in defense of their human rights. The book was published by two Afghan activists, Noorjahan Akbar and Batul Muradi, in 2013. Following the book's success and distribution in six provinces in Afghanistan, Noorjahan Akbar created the Free Women Writers blog to continue publishing women's writings in Persian, Pashtu and Uzbeki. Since then, the blog has expanded to include hundreds of articles, poems, narratives, essays and paintings about gender equality, environmental concerns, economic inequality, democracy and other social justice issues. With a weekly readership of more than thirty thousand, the blog has reached tens of thousands of Afghans. This website is the English translation of these writings. Read the Persian book here: