My Brother is a Bowerbird

In years 1980-1983 my brother Azad was in the army for Iraq-Iran war where got injured and didn’t have to go to the army the next 5 years. One night, in the attempt to beat the deadly silence before the attack, he recorded in the dark a song in the language of the enemy on his small cassette player. What was fascinating for us was that he forgot to turn the recording off when the opponents attacked and we could hear everything. We heard the song when he once got few days off to visit us summer 1983. He could not tell a lot about his time there, but hearing his voice from the tape and being told how he recorded it we were brought inside his experience of the way the storytelling would never give. “The moment of silence is the moment in which the opponent army is getting ready to attack” he said. But non the less it is a appealing moment for somebody who is from Kurdistan fighting next to the Arabs against the Persian with which he shares a same family of language (Indo European) and his fascination by there ornamental “maqams” (Persian way of singing and repeating certain patterns with there voice) makes him sing a song by Iraj (one of the legendaries of the traditional Persian maqams) laud. The fact that the opponent army is just few hundreds meters away from the frontier in where my Azad was placed, they can hear him singing.

Written with Aneta Szylak