In a taxi, a poet speaks to the driver. It’s the only taxi in town. He mentions travel, mentions Afghanistan, that he was there with the forces. She’s from Afghanistan and the conversation continues — awkward; complicated; him trying to say good things, but failing; her feeling like she should rescue him, but deciding not to. War is upended by the point of view of a person in whose country the war was fought. Underneath the action of the poem is a question about whether conversation is possible, and an appreciation for silence.
Aria Aber is based in Oakland, CA. Her poems are forthcoming or have appeared in The New Yorker, Poetry Magazine, Kenyon Review, The Poetry Review and elsewhere. She is the author of Hard Damage, which won the Prairie Schooner Book Prize in Poetry and a Whiting Award. She is currently a Stegner Fellow in Poetry at Stanford University.
Find the transcript for this show at onbeing.org.