I think most of you would have heard the famous Kishore Kumar Song…
‘Aa Chal Ke Tujhe Main Leke Chalun Ek Aise Gagan Ke Taale ..
Jahan Gam Bhi Naa Ho Aansoo Bhi Naa Ho ..
Bas Pyar Hi Pyar Rahe’
Maybe, in reality, how many parents would have tried to take their kids away from the strife-prone areas to a promised land? The story would have repeated countless times- 1947 partition, Afghanistan Strife, Serbian crisis, and presently in Syria.
Sea Prayer is an illustrated poem, inspired by the story of Alan Kurdi, the three-year-old Syrian refugee boy who drowned in the Mediterranian Sea trying to reach safely to Europe and his body on the beach became a symbol of the refugee crisis.
As a Khaled Hosseini fan, I have read all of his books and all of them also form the basis of displaced families, lost and found stories woven in the backdrop of the Afghan crisis. I had pre-ordered the book thinking it will be again a novel but nevertheless, I enjoyed this poem wherein a father narrates to his son, Marwan, the good old days of his village and how he spent his childhood there. But then the crisis which has made it seem like a dream and forced them to search for a new home, though at most places they are uninvited and unwelcome.
And last but not the least this line will echo the sentiment of each parent
“ I said to you,
‘Hold My Hand. Nothing bad will happen’
These are only words.
A father’s tricks.
It slays your father,
your faith in him.
Because all I think tonight is
How deep is the sea,
And how vast, how indifferent.
How powerless I am to protect you from it”
The poem is another good attempt by Khaled Hosseini to bring attention to the refugee crisis which is taking mega dimensions in the world. Hope it stirs our collective consciousness and no parent ever becomes so helpless again. Amen!
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