Free Voice

My favorite part about living in Iran was that I knew little, and expected little. I liked our apartment. I never really wanted a house, though I sometimes wished I had my own room. I didn’t notice people aging the way I do now. My parents’ age didn’t worry me then. I was young enough that their age seemed appropriate. Time went by slow. I always wondered what it would be like to be a grownup. My mother filled the afternoon silence with her warm, magical voice that carried me to faraway places. When she sang, I was silent. I figured she needed the space to be hers; it was her only time to be herself, not a housewife, a mother, a caretaker.
I didn’t realize then that neither of us lived in a free world. But we were free; I in my childhood ignorance, she in her songs.
That’s what I miss, the carefree way she sang, how high her voice went. Her voice is shaky now; and she is almost too busy to break out in song. I take voice lessons, which makes both of us happy. I sing in English in class, but there are nights that my hearts yearns to sing in Farsi. I sing, and my roommate Jill listens with eager ears. And I almost always want to cry when I’m done.

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