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Autobiography

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we didn’t really speak
my summer wants to answer

the architecture doesn’t matter
this is not my real life

when I am here I want to know
why do I believe what I was taught

a storm is on the way
close all the windows

begin at the earliest hour
is there a self


Kazim Ali, "Autobiography" from The Fortieth Day. Copyright © 2008 by Kazim Ali.  Reprinted by permission of BOA Editions, Ltd.
Source: The Fortieth Day (BOA Editions Ltd., 2008)
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Autobiography

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  • Poet, editor, and prose writer Kazim Ali was born in the United Kingdom to Muslim parents of Indian descent. He received a BA and MA from the University of Albany-SUNY, and an MFA from New York University.
    Ali’s poetry collections include The Far Mosque (2005), which won Alice James Books’ New England/New York Award, The Fortieth Day (2008), and Sky Ward (2013). Ali’s poems, both lyric and musical, explore the intersection of faith and daily life. In a review of The Fortieth Day, Library Journal noted that Ali “continues his task of creating a rejuvenated language that longs to be liberated from the weight of daily routine and the power of dogmatic usage . . . writing in the tradition of Wallace Stevens, Ali is clearly a poet of ideas and symbols, yet his words remain living entities within the texture of the poem.”
    His prose includes The Disappearance of Seth (2009),...

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