A: I was in 7th grade when I wrote my first short poem in Farsi.
Q: Do you consider yourself a poet first?
A: Let me think, I love writing. I have written prose, short stories, and poetry. I am more comfortable writing poetry. After being called, “Poet” a few times, I started to accept that I am a poet first!
Q: What do you consider to be the main function of a poet?
A: I don’t think writing poetry as a function I believe poet's role is to communicate, connect, and share her or his opinion, feelings,and challenges. Hopefully to raise some awareness.
Q: How do you think a poet’s job has changed for better or worse in 21st century?
A: poet’s job has changed for better, moving away from rigidity of old poetry styles has made it possible for every one not just the scholars or people of high-societies to read, write, and enjoy poetry. I still respect and love the old classic traditional poetry and literature.
Q: Can you tell us a little bit about your experience starting to write “Rays and Shadows?”
A: I wrote the pieces in different phases of my journey. Sometimes I wrote just a line or two about how I felt that day or night. Some were in Farsi some in English. Later when I faced my grim prognosis and mortality I decided to leave my writings for my children so they could learn something about their mother. It was then I tried to organize and completed the pieces that I had written in English before and during my journey.
Q: Your book is proof that poetry even today can help inspire people…did you ever imagine that when you started writing it?
A: Not really, I used writhing as a tool to unload, face, and deal with my own difficulties at the time. After I started to believe that I may live for a while and each year became another given gift, then I started gathering the poems putting them in a book. I thought sharing it may in a small way help the women who face or may face “Breast Cancer.” Hoping women and their family could believe in fighting Cancer, surviving, and having a good life after.
Q: While we are on it, what were your original intentions for “Rays and Shadows” when you were writing it?
A: I was Just venting my angers, my fears, my worries, and concerns about my children.
Q: Can you tell us a little bit about the program that you’ve donated profits from book to.
A: Adelphi, N Y Statewide Breast Cancer Hotline &Support Program has been helping women and men facing diagnosis of Breast Cancer and challenges Cancer brings along for over 30 years. I am proud to be part of this wonderful program. When a person first is diagnosed with cancer fear and panic is extremely intense and paralyzing. Hopefully the person is guided to call our Hotline to talk to a woman who had faced the Cancer and survived. Talking to someone who has been through the journey dilutes some of the fears anxieties, and panic. Then he or she is assisted to gather strength and information about the process of dealing with cancer. Each caller is offered information about resources, making choices and more. Then there are follow ups, referrals, and consultations. We suggest every caller to join our support program if the caller wishes. Anyone on our mailing-list receive the latest information regarding diagnosis treatments, path to wellness classes and activities.
Number to call for more info is 800. 877.8077.
Q: Can you tell us a little bit about your writing process?
A: The “Mood,” positive or negative may strike at any time of day or night. When it does, I have an urge to write about whatever is bothering me or making me smile. I write on anything, a piece of paper a napkin or at edges of newspapers, even on palm of my hands and arms! Later I give a shape and title.
Q: Do you have any writing goals for the future?
A: I am trying to gather and organize my Farsi-poems and publish them. Working on two other books hoping to publish one in 2014.Stay tuned!
Q: Do you have any advice for aspiring writers out there?
A: From my own experience I can suggest a few points of view, Be true to yourself, write about what you know or do your research. Attend workshops you will be surprised how much you learn and get feedback. Be prepared to live your ego at home and accept criticism. Most important, read, read, and read any style poetry done by well-known or unknown writers.