December is my July

when the sun
melts the sky—

the hypocrite coat
of happiness—

This is the month
that forgets the year
and initiates culture—

barefoot and brave
around the fire—

dances out of blossoms—
bedecks the fall—

and kisses the ice
on the mouth

This is the month
that resigns
to happy mourners—

its body
on the shoulders
of flames


Bänoo Zan is a poet, librettist, translator, teacher, editor and poetry curator, with more than 200 published poems and poetry-related pieces as well as three books. Song of Phoenix: Life and Works of Sylvia Plath, was reprinted in Iran in 2010. Songs of Exile, her first poetry collection, was released in 2016 in Canada by Guernica Editions. It was shortlisted for Gerald Lampert Memorial Award by the League of Canadian Poets in 2017. Letters to My Father, her second poetry book, was published in 2017 by Piquant Press in Canada. She is the founder of Shab-e She’r (Poetry Night), Toronto’s most diverse poetry reading and open mic series (inception: 2012). It is a brave space that bridges the gap between communities of poets from different ethnicities, nationalities, religions (or lack thereof), ages, genders, sexual orientations, disabilities, poetic styles, voices and visions.

Blossoming Sky illustration by C.B. Auder (digital collage).

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