To commemorate the second anniversary of the death of Alan Kurdi, the three-year-old Syrian boy who drowned while attempting to reach Greece in 2015, the author Khaled Hosseini, has written Sea Prayer. This imagined letter is written in the form of a monologue, delivered by a Syrian father to the son lying asleep in his lap, on the eve of their sea crossing to Europe.

Sea Prayer

On a moonlit beach a father cradles his sleeping son as they wait for dawn to break and a boat to arrive. He speaks to his boy of the long summers of his childhood, recalling his grandfather’s house in Syria, the stirring of olive trees in the breeze, the bleating of his grandmother’s goat, the clanking of her cooking pots. And he remembers, too, the bustling city of Homs with its crowded lanes, its mosque and grand souk, in the days before the sky spat bombs and they had to flee.

When the sun rises they and those around them will gather their possessions and embark on a perilous sea journey in search of a new home.

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