Three Poems from Pantea Amin Tofangchi’s Glazed With War

3 August, 2023

Pantea Amin Tofangchi grew up in poetry, war, death, conflict, beauty, hatred, love, and censorship all at the same time. She was eight when the Iran‑Iraq War started and in senior high when it ended. Glazed With War is her story, her life, written from her childhood’s perspective. —Mason Jar Press



Glazed With War is published by Mason Jar Press.


Pantea Amin Tofangchi



it rained
ashes those days

there are still some black spots on me
in my pocket lives

a bird that can swim
all the way back

to my second grade one day,
lifting me up
light like a feather,
to the 4th street by the school

another day
leaving me behind a thick black fog,

close enough
to smell it all again

ashes ashes
ashes ashes


Right after an attack on a corner

under the Seyed Khandan bridge,
right where the taxis used to stop
there was a human piece.

a male genital organ.

It was obviously not a sign
of humankind’s end

but, perhaps it was.

The Turtle and the Moon


Memories are wet,
gold as wheat in the field,
brown like the bag with wooden handles
and the green and red turtle that used to live on it.
The bag that secretly lived
under my bed
to comfort me through the night,
it contained water bottles, towels,
a few of my sister’s and my toys,
my green metal piggy bank,
and some other useless stuff.

The tv said in the event
of a chemical attack
put a wet towel on your face.

Memories are silver
cold and heavy
like a towel that has been soaked
in the lake on a cold night
with the moon dancing in the wind.

Pantea Amin Tofangchi is an Iranian American poet, writer, and graphic designer. She writes poems (in English), essays, stories and plays (mostly in Persian.) Her work has been published in Ploughshares, Little Patuxent Review, Welter Atlanta Review—in which she won the International Merit Award—and other journals. She was selected as a finalist for The National Poetry Series’ 2016 and Georgia Poetry Prize 2018. Glazed With War (Mason Jar Press) is her first poetry collection.

beautycensorshipconflictdeathhatredIran-Iraq warlovepoetrywar

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