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

 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Christopher J. Jarmick… Re-Brand (part 2 of 2)

 

Re-Brand (part 2 of 2)

But a part of me can’t help thinking the Native Americans
have again received glass beads for something worth much more

than realized.

I mean last week, I heard a local Seattle newscaster
refer to the Washington NFL football team as the Redskins
even though that word has been declared as derogatory as

using the N word.

But no one seemed to notice. There was no controversy, no suspension,
no firing or even an editorial in the paper.
Perhaps it’s because we are Washington State and have college and
NFL teams that some might confuse, if not delineated clearly
from that R Team in the other Washington.
And the NFL is a religion completely with a
Church of Monday Night Football – so they can follow
other rules since they answer to the highest power.

(and by this I mean of course: Money.)

Seattle and Minneapolis are in truth, just the latest cities to join the
growing movement. 16 States already don’t recognize Columbus Day,

and South Dakota has since 1990, celebrated Native Day.

Yet school boards have also done a good thing, a very good thing.
In Seattle, Portland and in many other schools, in many other places
Indigenous Day supplements, Columbus Day in the spirit of generous cooperation.
So relax, Columbus Day Mattress Sale Signs won’t have to be re-done after all.
We’ve done a good thing here in Silicon Valley Northwest
Nothing disingenuous occurring here at all.
Oh no… It’s a good thing, a very good thing indeed!
Chief Seattle and I feel better already,
don’t you?

 

Copyright © 2015 by Christopher J. Jarmick

 

 

 

Explanation: The Seattle City Council officially proclaimed that the 2nd Monday in October is now Indigenous Day instead of Columbus Day. Several cities have already passed similar measures and at least 16 states don’t recognize Columbus Day. 1n 1892 on the 400th anniversary of Columbus’ landing in the Bahamas in 1492 President Benjamin Harrison established Columbus Day. It started being celebrated on the second October Monday in 1971, though today 16 states including Alaska, Hawaii and Oregon don’t recognize Columbus Day as a public holiday. Since 1990 South Dakota has celebrated Native American Day. Previously at the state level in Washington (and elsewhere) efforts were made to create Honor Day to Honor Native Americans on May 13th but no legislation has passed to officially recognize that day. Absolutely there should be a special day giving respect and honor to Native Americans. It should be more important than something that school boards see as a supplement to Columbus Day or that cities are able to proclaim in the same way they hand out keys to honor notable citizens. I don’t think Native Americans should settle for something you can consider in a glass half full sort of way as a good step in the right direction. Poets by the way have a celebratory Month every April maybe the least that could be done is to declare November, Native American Month, and make the Friday after Thanksgiving Indigenous Day.

 

 

 

 

 

John Kaniecki… I Was A Navajo

 

I was a Navajo

A million years ago
I herded sheep
And got little sleep

I knew the name of each member of the starry host

I was a Navajo
And walked Mother Earth below
I knew secrets deep
Treasures to keep

Now I walk the scarred surface an anguished ghost

I weep I wail
My courage does fail
When I see greed and lust for power and control
An endless drive with an ambiguous goal
Never to achieve never to receive
Contrasting
The simple blessing to those who believe

In Love

In one night of my life there was more joy

Then in all the angry years of those who destroy

I was a Navajo
And you will never know
The beauty of the night
And what is right

 

My name is John Kaniecki and I write poetry for the enjoyment of the art. I believe that a poet must first establish that they can write in rhyme and rhythm and only then move to the more advanced free verse. I have been published by Struggle Magazine, The Blue Collar Review, Burning Books, Jerry Jazz, IWW Newspaper, Protest Poems, Flute, Black Magnolia, Left Curve, She Mom, Whisper, Vox Poetica and others. Though political or moral in nature I write in various forms.

Copyright © 2014 by John Kaniecki