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“We have become too accustomed
to seeing from the air, which
violates all the familiar geometry
and perspective of our mundane,
grounded vision.”
— Nasser Hussain


The sky was a color
she loved most —
the holy blue
before Eid mornings.

The air was calm, quietly
the trio as they plucked
okra in the fields.
Eyes hovering.

The fields, always buzzing.
zung zung zung
They brushed off
machars circling
for prey.

zung zung
In range
a long profile
zung zung


replay it, the footage —
of a strike so deafening

remains detached, an aerial silence.

zoom in. aim.
two clicks.
somewhere below
the missile ejects

the precision
of the impact —
to be discussed later

on camera
the mountains of Waziristan
stand still

Ferry Tale


One cloudy evening
you will find yourself

alone on a ferry
between islands

as foreign to you
as your ancestors.

You will wonder how
they would see you,

with your open
gaze and amreeki

accent, as unfamiliar
as the German

couple next to you,
mouths casually

secured as anchors.
You could have

said it like them,
ferries, fairies,

all it takes is a lilt,
and there you are

with wings bright
enough to be confused

with God. Your mind
will begin to wander

with the waves
and you wonder

at the froth, churning
one ending

for hundreds
of you.



drone2Mariam Zafar is a recent graduate of the MFA in Creative Writing Program at The New School. A desert dweller at heart, she currently writes between Miami, Dubai, and New York City. She is the 2015 winner of the Paul Violi Prize in Poetry, and her work has appeared or is forthcoming in H.O.W Journal, Bird’s Thumb, and The Ink & Code. You can tweet her @itsmariamzafar.