Whatever the Wounds, Whatever the Damage by Shahaduz Zaman

Published as Story of the Week (May 2, 2014) in The Missing Slate.


“Mamtaz left Shafiq with her mother and came to the city when she got the job through a girl from her village. She had no curiosity in knowing where in the world the clothes she was making ended up. She did not know that seminars were being held on the value of her work. All Mamtaz had done every day was hold her breath as she worked towards an unchanging purpose. A bit more money and she would bring Shafiq to the city. The two of them would rent a new room. She would enroll Shafiq in a city school. When Mamtaz sat wordless in the factory sewing at her machine or when she lay silently in her cave-like room or when she silently traversed this strange city midway between the cave and the factory, then, in secret, under her long lashes she was actually arranging those dreams around Shafiq.”