Shawn L. Bird

Original poetry, commentary, and fiction. All copyrights reserved.

poem- landay April 19, 2015

Filed under: poem,Poetry — Shawn L. Bird @ 12:11 pm
Tags: , , , , , ,

Today’s prompt is to write a landay.  This 22 syllable couplet poetry form is a secret, underground women’s poetry in Afghanistan.  I was fascinated by this article about collecting landays in the war-torn land.  This secret voice tells us about the real undercurrents, the real experience, of life for these women.  


When the woman is Afghani,

The power of her voice is found in hidden poetry.


I am profoundly touched to read these secret treasures that vividly paint a reality we know so little of.  This is the hidden power of poetry, to condense so much into a few lines.  I like that they’re meant to morph as the lines are seized by others, and the message is intensified or modernized .  


When the woman is Afghani,

The fire in her voice is found in flames of poetry.


The form is supposed to be 9 syllables on the first line, 13 on the second, but my first lines all kept turning out as 8 syllables, so I just made 14 in the second, to reach 22.  (as per my Poetic Licence).


16 Responses to “poem- landay”

  1. ellenbest24 Says:

    The words spell freedom. Thank you for this post.

  2. thank you for thispost. i started poetry with the simplistic “haiku” and oh what a terrible examples i did. it was only third grade…haha. but to understand and know i would be a poet at 57 no way. i loathed the reading of poems to the class. but as a stutterer i could hardly read the haiku was just the right size for me to read in front of the class. i will now try my hand at these landays. thank you!

  3. Lorien Says:

    Well done Shawn! I read the article also, and was deeply touched by the spirit of these women who are seeking something that is theirs when everything else has been taken away.

  4. skyllairae Says:

    Beautiful! I was so moved by the article as well.

  5. Afghani women are tall, robust- and very fiery.

  6. grhambley Says:

    I’m thinking at this stage of, “NaPoWriMo” we’d all be better off coupling with someone and tying the can to everything else for and about NaPoWriMo!

    • Feeling a little stressed, are we? 😉

      • grhambley Says:

        Not at all. Currently no one has been able to tell me when, “Just Shut The Hell Up Day” is.

        This one came about from someone deciding every day is a day and wanting to PUSH at you.

        This piece, the beginnings go back 20 years. PUSH technology. How do you feel when you go in to a store and get asked for your email address? How do they try make you feel when you say no? We want PULL and the marketing, retailing, et al want PUSH. You maybe feel like a creature in Dr. Dolittle?

        We aren’t wired for this. There are now information overload detox facilities.

        I will not be Jacked In!

      • I was just thinking about this the other day- everything is marketing. Everyone wants you to buy. There’s more to life than that. My father (age 100, lifetime salesman) doesn’t understand why I keep a blog, and why I’m happy that so many people interact with my work here. “Do they buy your book?” he wants to know. That doesn’t matter, I tell him. He doesn’t get it. So then I tell him about some of the comments people leave, how a poem made them laugh, how another one made them think, how they enjoy coming by each day to read. That’s worth something, to touch someone else. Why should money be part of the interaction? I have a job, I don’t need a blog to pay the bills, so it’s not monetized. I think that makes it a nicer place to be. If you want to buy my books here, I tell you how, but that’s not what it’s about for me.

      • grhambley Says:

        Human interaction in our global community is pretty sweet!

        We meet mostly good ones, the odd exceptional one and the odd hypocrite. I’ve been working on a piece off and on about our blogasphere.

        Your Dad doesn’t know any different. If he cared to know different he would. Nothing wrong with being set in your ways as long as you aren’t dictating your ways to others.

        I’d love to have more time out here to read and see other artists. As it is I can’t get to all the ones I follow put out and I’m certain the ones who follow me are the same.

        You aren’t jacked in. Plugged in to creation is far different and so much more rewarding as you say in different words.

        I actually put our little interaction up a poignant post.

        I’m around and I know you are too.

        zoooooooooooooooooom and not the boy dolphin!

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