Poet Sareh Farmand was born in Tehran at the start of the Islamic Revolution. In this brave first collection of poems and prose a narrative arc details her family’s escape from Iran, detailing their time as immigrants in limbo, and finally, as Landed Immigrants in Canada. Using family anecdotes, memory, public documents, and images to outline her family’s story, Pistachios in my Pocket moves from the personal to the universal by exploring the influences of migration, political strife, and cultural identity on humanity. Here is a new voice to the conversation on global citizenship and multiculturalism, as themes of loss, home, and belonging are explored in a new way through a wide socio-political lens and personal accounts of a family’s unique, yet universal experiences. Ultimately, bringing forward the many ways immigrants are haunted after fleeing for safety and what it means to be Canadian.
“Fleeing Iran, these poignant “meta, between” poems evoke how the memory details Farmand carries in her pocket enable her to mourn “who we were robbed of being,” and gradually seed her life in Canada.”– Betsy Warland
“With a cunning and contemplative hand Farmand pulls back the curtain on the complex experience that is diaspora. All at once these poems are spectator and participant, transporting the reader to a land where violence is ever present in the gentle sway of the cypress trees, revolution and tradition woven into the silk fibres of family rugs. Prepare to be dazzled and broken, then rebuilt by this stunning debut collection.”– Carlie Blume (author of Gigglepuss)
“This is a memorable must-read. Trail blazing art that skirts the line between poetic fiction and non-fiction. An edifying page turner that entertains, Farmand’s brave work is a testament to the human spirit and the adversity of the human condition. An eye-opening story-telling worthy of philosophical and socio-political study.”– Joseph Kakwinokanasum author of My Indian Summer