Storying Sheffield

A Wild Call

For last Thursday’s Storying workshop, we began the session by reading this poem by Shirin Teifouri. Shirin wrote this in response to the previous workshop (read about this here).  Prompted by Shirin’s poem the group discussed whether ‘mindfulness’ was helpful or not in negotiating wellbeing.  There were mixed feelings about this, and no really strong advocates for it as an approach.  There was a more enthusiastic reaction to the notion of ‘flow‘ – of absorption in a task or a moment and a sense of oneness with the world.  But we also discussed the way in which we experience marginalisation and discrimination, and the darkness and pain which results from this.


A Wild Call

Was it a wild call, a smile that gave promises like the sun,
a promised sun, the bluest sky, mere fun, or perhaps none,
that sent us on a pilgrimage to a local park?

But no matter how hard I tried to worship pigeons and trees,
to be mindful of flowers and trivial things,
I can’t remember a single thing about them,

eyes have pilgrimage of their own,
I remember bodies translated themselves
into grass, that dark, fluid language
of which we know nothing, under such sky,
wildness, shadow-size, shadow-shape, swooped to the pond
disturbing the fish that pretended to be dead or numb,

a wild call is ‘harsh’, it requires intoxication,
I remember the muscles of my eyes struggled
to reassemble themselves behind sunglasses,
I remember the pain,

someone said, ‘wild geese are hungry to identify home’,
I thought it was the story I travelled to hear,
and I thought although wild geese have a non-human logic
and don’t follow rational maps, they choose not to fear,
whoever they are, they can be identified by their sunny smiles.


Shirin Teifouri
May 2017