Short Story shortlisted for the 2019 Liminal Fiction Prize
"I didn’t choose to identify as Muslim or not; my identity was projected upon me. Indeed, my incessant outfit changes had no effect—America was dressing me in its anxiety of Islam, whether I liked it or not."
"Back home, at least the Afghans were more straightforward with their position. You could discretely fuck whoever you wanted and never needed to come out as anything to anyone."
"Cousins play as siblings, raise and counsel each other as aunties and uncles, and participate in networks of care like friends. The cousin is a marker of solidarity, but they are also symptomatic of a family's cultural logic and the country they settled in."
"Her sharp voice, beckoning me to sit, shatters the silence between us. While others of her generation have softened in disposition over time, Bibi certainly has not."
"I am always skeptical and a little resistant to the obsessions of tech bros, even the ones in my own family. Perhaps this is foolish; my obscure interests certainly didn’t skyrocket in value over 1000 per cent in 2017 alone."
"If the end of the world were really nigh, perhaps more people would live their queerest lives without fear of reproach and shame interrupting that expressivity."
"If depicted at all, the queer Muslim is either a mangled silhouette tossed brutally from a building by ISIS or, in Mateen’s case, so unimaginably repressed in his sexuality that he must resort to mass murder."
"If you are complicit in structural oppression, real solidarity means enabling those less fortunate than you to speak for themselves."
"When I attend queer events, I want to believe that, somewhere in the twinky mass, there is awareness of the struggles for liberation beyond the governmental and religious institution of marriage."