Like it introduced Eliza Griswold and Seamus Murphy to Landay – folk couplets composed and sung by Pashun women.
This post has excerpts from their article that appears here
A landay is an oral and often anonymous scrap of song created by and for mostly illiterate people: the more than twenty million Pashtun women who span the border between Afghanistan and Pakistan. Traditionally, landays are sung aloud, often to the beat of a hand drum, which, along with other kinds of music, was banned by the Taliban from 1996 to 2001, and in some places, still is.
A landay has only a few formal properties. Each has twenty-two syllables: nine in the first line, thirteen in the second. The poem ends with the sound “ma” or “na.” Sometimes they rhyme, but more often not.
Content topics range from romance to sex to war and even current politics. Here are a few landays to give you a flavour…