Rajnish Mishra… Sic semper [evello mortem] tyrannis

 

Sic semper [evello mortem] tyrannis

 
‘Still waters run deep’.
 
Clichés are good to begin a poem with.
I love justice and hate tyranny.
I love justice more than
I love my country, its people, my people, fame or wealth.
Sometimes, truth sounds clichéd.
 
Quid est veritas?
 
At first it seems not easy,
not quite, but then, as it’s natural to kill, so natural,
in fact, that they need to write,
sometimes on stone, sometimes on paper:
‘Thou shalt not kill!’
 
Thou shalt have no other gods before Me.
 
He rose high, and masses called him God.
He’s not alone, but caput gone triumvirate kaput.
It’s unnerving to feel within – a fierce, feral,
beast, unnamed and ferocious, rise and fill
all the space up under the skin
of a citizen: civilized, harmless and tamed.
 
Hoi polloi
 
The masses, sheep, sons and daughters of apes,
imitate, submit, follow and yield liberty
to tyrants, despots, usurpers with power,
for their patch of pasture or bunch of bananas.
 
‘But here I am to speak what I do know’
 
I am an honorable man, not a butcher.
You are an honorable man, no accomplice.
We are all honorable and good men.
They are not honorable.
 
Ehyeh asher Ehyeh.
 
You are what you are,
and masses are ‘them’, not ‘us’.
Strangely though, it’s them, not you,
who lust for blood tonight, my blood.
Bloodthirsty sheep? Lion-apes? Always?
 
‘Fearful symmetry’
 
Tiger’s fire is sheep’s death.
Thy blood my brother bought death for me;
Thy blood ‘cries out’ to them ‘from the soil’
brings vengeance, seven fold,
Insane at night, sane at dawn.
No, Caesar never cried ‘Et tu Brute’,
nor I ‘Sic semper evello mortem tyrannis’.
 

Rajnish Mishra is a poet, writer, translator and blogger born and brought up in Varanasi, India. He is the editor of PPP Ezine, a poetry ezine. He has a blog on poetry, poetics and aesthetic pleasure: https:/poetrypoeticspleasure.wordpress.com.

 

Copyright © 2017 by Rajnish Mishra

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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Afzal Moolla… Massacre at Houla

 

Massacre at Houla

 
She was no more than 10 years of age.
He could have been a grandfather.
 
Young, old, women, girls, men, boys.
 
108 lives.
 
Now they are buried,
in hurriedly dug graves,
on the plains of Houla.
 
Killed by knives,
shot at point-blank range,
slaughtered, mowed-down.
 
108 lives.
 
Snuffed-out. Decimated. Taken-out.
 
108 lives.
 
As Damascus lies blatantly,
spewing forth untruth,
108 warm, dead bodies,
remain buried,
in hurriedly dug graves,
on the plains of Houla.
 
108 lives.
 

Afzal Moolla was born in New Delhi, India while his parents were in exile, fleeing Apartheid South Africa. His father Mosie Moolla represented the African National Congress (ANC) in India, Egypt and Finland.

Afzal returned to South Africa following the unbanning of the ANC and the release of Nelson Mandela and other political prisoners. He works and lives in Johannesburg, and shares his literary musings with his most strident critic – his 12 year old cat – Scully.

 

Copyright © 2012 by Afzal Moolla

 
 
 
 
 
 

Afzal Moolla… A Child of War

 

A Child of War

As she lies bleeding
the girl who skipped and hopped to school
all of nine and a half years old
with ribbons in her hair and a laugh that was
her father’s pride
 
As she lies bleeding
the warm bullet lodged in her torn stomach
she stares at her skipping rope
as her blood soaks it the colour of the cherries her mummy buys
 
As she lies bleeding
she sees the people through the thick black smoke
blurred visions of scattering feet and shoes left behind
hearing nothing but the pinging in her blown-out eardrums
 
As she lies bleeding
she slips away quickly and then she is dead
a mangled heap of a nine and a half year old girl
whose laugh was her father’s pride
 
As she lies bleeding
for even in death she bleeds some more
the warm bullet wedged in her torn stomach
steals the light from her bright little eyes
as she lies bleeding
 

in Jallianwala Bagh in ‘19

Leningrad in ‘42

Freetown in ‘98

Soweto in ‘76

Jenin in ‘02

Hanoi in ‘68

Beirut in ‘85

Kabul now

Basra still

Gaza too
 
As she lies bleeding
this little nine and a half year old girl
whose laugh was her father’s pride
we know she’ll bleed and bleed some more
tomorrow and in many tomorrows yet unborn
with that warm bullet in her stomach
ripped open and torn
 
As she lies bleeding.
 

Afzal Moolla was born in New Delhi, India while his parents were in exile, fleeing Apartheid South Africa. His father Mosie Moolla represented the African National Congress (ANC) in India, Egypt and Finland.

Afzal returned to South Africa following the unbanning of the ANC and the release of Nelson Mandela and other political prisoners. He works and lives in Johannesburg, and shares his literary musings with his most strident critic – his 12 year old cat – Scully.

 

Copyright © 2012 by Afzal Moolla

 
 
 
 
 
 

Michele Alice… DC Circus

 
 

DC Circus

 
 

I.

 
Golden rod
       is so pretty, I wonder–
has it a fragrance?
 
 
 

II.

 
Who needs Ringling
Brothers when we’ve got
Washington?
 
 
 

III.

 
New Economics 101
 
Debt
is
stimulating.
 
 
 

IV.

 
The Paul Krugman
       Equation: You’ll know it’s enough
when it works.
 

Originally from Detroit, I spent my college years studying Philosophy at the University of Arizona (Tucson) before escaping the heat and ending up in the Berkshires (Massachusetts) where I support my writing by working in a museum.

 

Copyright © 2017 by Michele Alice

 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Tamara Lakomy… Calvary (in the) Fields of Waste

 

Calvary

I held you in the brilliance of my tear
Nothing could assuage the radiance of your soul
But you burned my touch as I drew near
You opened all the scars that held me whole
 
You whipped my flesh with words in barbs
And watched of the furrows of streaming blood
For you came to me in the guise of angels in all garbs
Just to trample my spark in conquest into the mud
 
I held you in the palm of my hand, as a nail against a cross
Watched your loving hatred perforate my tender care
For in the desecration of my heart you see no loss
And you see an illuminated spectacle of my despair
 
You anointed the altars of my devotion with my entrails
And laughed as the dismal cry of the abyss as I wept
As the sunlight drowns beneath the horizon, my life fails
In a bloodbath of forsaken hopes as mercy slept
 
You are nothing but the razor that I both love and despise
Brilliant as those stars that are cold yet a glory to our eyes
For in the sundering of my existence there is nothing but your lies
Always waiting to be held again in my hand to nail me to my demise
 
I am a relinquished sacrifice, denied the resurrection of hope
Till my bones dry and bleach and the garments rags fluttering free
I remain a prisoner of your Calvary, dangling by a silken rope
Woven of the dreams I once conceived, prey to your murderous spree
 
So in the brilliance of my tear, I augur the omens of your abhorrent spite
And hold in abeyance the beating of my heart lest you stalk my will
And in every denuding of my soul, and in the venom of your poisonous bite
I fade into oblivion with the confines of the world to haunt and fill….
 
 
 

Fields of Waste

The fields of waste are open, wide is my wound
Vaster than the horizon I drink with avid eyes
For there is nothing hollower than my chaos, my memory doomed
The grave beneath shall be the dome of my skies
 
There shall be no more sunshine, no more breath of air
As slowly the deconstructed mind errs as a shrieking fear
That haunts the shadows of the barrows, crouching in the devil’s lair
All is coming to an end, your untimely death is near
 
But what have you reaped of the wayward times, casting lots
What have you earned of your mortal sojourn, conquering the beast
The animal who resides in your subconscious, your sagacity blots
But still from the shorn veins, the agony is released
 
Do we prize the allotted time, as a remuneration for our insolence
Our beliefs in the poignancy of endeavours soon to greet the dust
But be wary of the signs of the horror of awakening from our indolence
For naught shall grant you immortality when your exploits end in rust
 
There is no glory in our sublime decline, moribund flesh and ribaldry
There is no irenic hell for our souls that burn like the conflagration of the stars
Caged in the immense cages of their own design, with an art surpassing sygaldry
We await our unravelling and decay, behind our prison’s gilded bars
 
I have tasted my spirit, from the gullet leaping high in its escape
For it seeks the winds, to be shredded as sea foam on broken waves
Into the chasms of the rim of the world, into the dismal awning agape
Of the pits of our torments that forever our dismal master craves
 
Sing for the skies that have no soul, eyeless auguring the fates of men
Forever looking down in spite at the vanity of the fruitless machinations
So descend from your throne creator, come walk the realms of creation again
For made in some erroneous image we live in delusions of dominations
 
 

I am an author, and a poet, but I have never sought to publish my poetry before as it was deemed too dark and heavy, laden with a melancholy and metaphysical twist that most people could not relate to. I grew up in North Africa, a tribal Amazigh feminist girl in a repressive regime, witnessing many dark things that have scarred my memory. I grew up around the mystical marabouts and the witch doctors that ruled over the souls, I was exposed to a wilderness of spirit and bare human cruelty that the West seldom comprehends; radicalisation, jihad, organ trafficking and the likes.

Copyright © 2016 by Tamara Lakomy