Words and Metaphors:
Somewhere in the humdrum that was the year 2017, Daastan’s co-founder Sidra Amin took it upon herself to launch a platform that worked solely for the propagation of literature through offline events. For months before the forum was founded, Sidra hunted for literati and like-minded individuals with a heart filled with sheer love for literature and related arts. In mid-summer, it finally came into being, and was named ‘Words and Metaphors’. They had the pleasure of introducing to KPK its very first spoken word performance by their debut artist Mr. Kayenaat Hameed Khattak.
Literary Evenings Volume 1:
Almost a year later, Daastan powered what was to become the signature event series of Words and Metaphors, titled “Literary Evenings”. The idea was to initiate a chain of events solely focused on encouraging the literature invested local community artists, and bring their work out into the open. The first volume of Literary Evenings, held in the city of Peshawar, had a two-tiered agenda. The first, was to hold a Poetry Slam Contest between the poets of the city, in both Urdu and English. The contest was divided into three rounds, each with its own unique theme to challenge the performer and their written content. A panel of three exceptionally qualified judges was assembled, which consisted of a research scholar pursuing her MPhil in Literature, Founder Daastan, and Co-founder Words and Metaphors, each especially suited to evaluate the poet’s abilities of speech, written word and body language.
The second purpose of the event was to hold a book launch for the most talented writer of Qissa, who also had the honor of being the fastest crowd funded author of Daastan, Ms. Laiba Sehrish Nawaz. Her book, Abduction from the Lethe, had hundreds of entries of poem and prose, which she had written since she was a little child, as well as art and photography that resonated with her work.
The event had an astounding turnout. More than 50 people showed up to witness the rise of the empire of literature, and cheer for those who had accomplished their dreams and visions related to it. The guest of honor was Dr. Nasir Jamal Khattak, a professor at the University of Peshawar who wowed the crowd with his soul-searching talk about realizing one’s inner potential.
Three winners of the Poetry Slam contest were selected and were awarded gifts from Daastan. The book launch also received media coverage from multiple news channels, such as Geo News.