This panel brings together a group of Montreal writers who have throughout the past few years gathered in several writing workshops, literary lectures, story reading in different literary community spaces such as Montreal Literary Society and Zagros Publishing House and have been supported by local media such as Hafteh and Payvand. The result of these gathering has led to form a network which has facilitated exchanges of ideas and has led to reflections on how migration has effected Iranian writers who have settled in Montreal. As the theme of the panel suggests the new “home” has created a new ambiance, that of migrant. Migration has left a trace of longing for their country of their birth and a certain type of “homelessness.” The panel starts with Mr. Mehdi Marashi who will read part of his short story “Jai Narafteh Shaer” (the poet has not gone anywhere). This short story similar to the next story by Alireza Shams ”Baran” (the Rain”) is about the experience of being a migrant in both cases from Iran to Montreal. Both authors will give a taste of their feeling laden in nostalgia and dislocation. The panel then moves to the next presenter which relies on theme of migration and exile elaborated in the work of literacy critiques such ash Edward Said’s Reflection of Exile (2000) and post-colonial work of Homi Baba on being a “migrant.” Roksana Bahramitash will read passages of her writing about her trip as an Iranian-Canadian to Afghanistan to making a documentary on the image of Afghan women in Western media within a post colonial discourse articulated by the work of Spivak (1988). The trip ends with a suicide bombing leaving the author in perpetual state of existential exile (Adorno 1984.) The panel ends with a discussion by Amy Motlagh who will situation and contextualize these reading within the currents of modern Persian literature in general and in the context of the diaspora literary community in particular.
The narrator is an immigrant who lives in Montreal where he meets a compatriot-poet, from his home country-Iran. They meet several times in the poet’s home and during each visit the poet reads his poems to the narrator. The narrator follows the footsteps of the poet’s emotions and his affection for a woman. The story takes place during a cold winter. The story comes to an end when the narrator finds that the poet refuses to open the door for him. The narrator becomes engaged with the question of presence or absence of the poet at home and decides to come back at a later time. He returns and rings the bell again but there is no answer. The narrator tries one last time and arrives to the poet’s home on their usual meeting time. He rings again, and again stands by the door step. There is no answer, the narrator waits and waits, opens the bottle of wine he has brought, and waits for the poet who is no longer opening the door.