There are boundaries you cannot cross. At least,

not if you’re a woman: a seventeen-

year old girl in Swat Valley, Pakistan.


Two men hold her down-

one is her brother. This will give him honour.

A black-turbaned fighter with a beard

whips her and whips, whips, whips her.

The weather map for Pakistan is pale.

There are moons instead of sun. Rainclouds also.

The lines are like the thin cords of many-tailed whip

lashed across the deserts , mountains and air.


 ‘Hold her legs tightly!’ A voice from the crowd.


It’s a two-minute video on a mobile-phone.

‘She came out of her house.

She came out of her house with a guy.

She came out of her house with a guy who was not her husband’.

‘There are boundaries you cannot cross!’


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