Fireflies and The Warmest of Hugs

A Divide (Artwork by 13-year-old Ani Baghdasaryan)


I was taught not to fight darkness
But to light a candle instead.
As this world collapses
One bullet at a time,
I carry a candlestick
Wherever I go.
As bullets
Land on my heart
Hitting shelters of memories and hopes,
I walk in a shield
Made of lilies and bliss,
Of faith, hopefulness and love.
As eruptions blast in places
Where flowers were meant to bloom,
I sow seeds of new beginnings,
Of lilies, daisies and peace –
One flower at a time.
My art as my candlelight
And my faith as my shield,
I try to catch the bullets
Of this half-fallen world,
Squeeze them with my hands
And reshape them into stars
So that they no longer spread darkness
But light our paths instead. 


The Warmest of Hugs

Dear Armenia,
I wish I could hug you
And take you away,
Far-far away
From what you’ve gone through
And are still going through today,
Far-far away,
From people who hurt you
And are still hurting you today.
I wish I could dry your tears
And draw a bright smile
Across your valleys,
I wish I could fill your summits
With victory songs and dances.
I wish I could eat թարմ հաց ու պանիր*
Peacefully on Sis and Masis,
And dance yarkhushta and kochari
On their picturesque hills.
I wish I could gift you
What was always meant to be yours,
I wish you could look at your lands
And no longer think of loss.
Dear Armenia,
I wish I could hug you,
But so far it’s been always you
Hugging us with so much love and tenderness
As if you have never ached.
Dear Armenia,
How come there is
So much resilience
In that soft woman-like shape of yours?

*Fresh bread and cheese

Milena Baghdasaryan

Milena Baghdasaryan

Milena Baghdasaryan is a graduate from UWC Changshu China. Since the age of 11, she has been writing articles for a local newspaper named Kanch ('Call'). At the age of 18, she published her first novel on and created her own blog, Taghandi Hetqerov ('In the Pursuit of Talent')—a portal devoted to interviewing young and talented Armenians all around the world. Baghdasaryan considers storytelling, traveling and learning new languages to be critical in helping one explore the world, connect with others, and discover oneself. After completing her bachelor's degree in Film and New Media at New York University in Abu Dhabi, Milena is currently enrolled in an advanced Master of Arts program in European Interdisciplinary Studies at the College of Europe in Natolin.

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