Graduate’s poetry taps into grief, Iranian roots

Sunday, May 21, 2023 - 14:32 in Psychology & Sociology

This story is part of a series of graduate profiles ahead of Commencement ceremonies. Darius Atefat-Peckham ’23 was just 3 years old when an auto accident took the lives of his mother and older brother. In the years that followed, he turned to poetry as a way to cope with his grief. “The first poem I wrote, I was trying to connect with my mother. It was about a flower I saw on a school field trip,” he recalled. “My father was excited. He has always been so supportive.” After the accident, Atefat-Peckham and his father recovered from physical injuries, but healing from the emotional trauma proved more difficult. The pair rebuilt a life together in Huntington, West Virginia, with help from family and friends. “I’m really grateful for the abundance of people who were involved in my upbringing,” Atefat-Peckham said. Nobody in this extended support network found it surprising when at age 12, Atefat-Peckham started...

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