Edition I

January 2016

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Stay a While - by Binu Sivan

Stay a While

By Binu Sivan

Watching my girl jumping
In puddles pretending
She was a giant
On a sea crossing
I smile
Even as my heart weeps.

Why this rush?
Why this dizzying hurtling
Through time and space?
To grow up
And be like me.

Stay a while…

A little while longer
Child, and just be.
There is time enough
To grow and be
Tall and strong,
To be jaded and wrong.

For now just breathe
In the air…
Of never-ending hope,
Of tavern-like despair;

Breathe in the air
Of flighty joy
And heart-breaking pain;
Of best friends and
Class room bullies;
Of promises of forever
And starlight
Dancing in your hair.

There is time enough
To be like me
But for now
Be a child
Just a little while longer
And give company
To the child in me…

Dead Cats and Plastic Bags - by Farah Chamma

Dead Cats and Plastic Bags

 By Farah Chamma

Remember when we picked up that dead cat with a plastic bag?
You stopped your car, and I got out to carry her away from the road.
“Ana kteer bkhaf.”
“I get really scared.”
This is what it all comes to.
Love in the form of dead cats and plastic bags.
Fear and nausea could be key constituents of love.
I wouldn’t have done it with as much spontaneity
If you hadn’t stopped your car so quickly, so naturally
As if picking up dead cats with plastic bags was something you did
From time to time.
I love you.

إلى أمةٍ عربية - by Ahmad Khazaie

إلى أمَّةٍ عربية

الشاعر أحمد الخزاعي

،إلى أمَّةٍ عربيةٍ قد أمات الذُل شعورِها
،إلى أمَّةٍ عربيةٍ قد استهواها التقليدُ الأعمى
،إلى أمَّةٍ عربيةٍ قد ذهب مجدُها في مهب الرياح العاتية
،إلى أمَّةٍ عربيةٍ قد نسِيَت نفسها
،إلى أمَّةٍ عربيةٍ قد أنبعت الحضارة
.سلامٌ على ماضيكِ

.ألفُ سلامٍ على ماضيكِ المشرّفِ
.دونَ حاضرُكِ الغيرُ مُتَحَضرٍ
.لست أتشرفُ بحاضركِ المريرِ

لست أتشرفُ بحاضرٍ
يقتل الأخُ فيهِ أخاهُ
.لمجردِ اختلافٍ فكري

لست أتشرف بحاضرٍ
يتبرأُ الأبُ من ابنه
.لمجرد تغيّرٍ طائفي

لست أتشرفُ بحاضرٍ
نسي المرءُ فيه صلةَ رحمهِ
.لمجرد كونه بمكانٍ فصلهُ خطٌ وهمي

لست أتشرفُ بحاضرٍ
نسيَ الفردَ فيهِ أصلُه
.لِمجرد هَوَسِهِ بالحلم الغربي

لست أتشرفُ بحاضرٍ
نَسِيَ العربي لغته
.لمجرد إعتبارها من عدمِ مواكبةِ العصرِ والرقي

ولست أتشرفُ بحاضرٍ
تجاهل أبنائه معنى وطناً عربي

أما حان لكِ؟
أما حانَ لكِ أن تستيقظي وتستحي؟
و تستحي على ما غُدتِ إليه؟
أم قد الحياء اندثر مع تاريخك؟

أما حانَ لكِ  أن تستعيدي
مجدكِ وحكمكِ؟
أم قد أمسيت مع الذل أعز رفاق؟

أما حانَ لكِ أن تنهضي
وتخرجي من ظلماتكِ وتعودي إلى نوركِ؟
أم قد أصبح الذُلُ عِنوانكِ؟

أما حان لكِ أن تُخرجي
كلَّ من طمعوا في ثرواتكِ؟
أم قد أعجبك الإحتلال الطاغي؟

أما حان لكِ أن تقفي
وتدافعي عن نفسكِ؟
أم قد أصبح الذُل إعتيادي؟

أما حان لكِ أن تنتفضي لأرضك؟
ام قد بات ذكرها إرهابي؟

،إلى أمَّةٍ عربيةٍ ازدهرت
ألم تمِلّي من كونكِ
كالعجينِ بين أصابعِ الخبّازِ الغربي؟

،إلى أمَّةٍ عربيةٍ سقطت
قومي وانهضي واستعيدي
سابق عهدكِ المجيدِ
.قبل فواتِ الأوان

There Comes a Time for Transformation - by Majd Radwan

There Comes a Time For Transformation

By Majd Radwan

There comes a time…
When the sun becomes your greatest teacher, and the stars represent your highest role in life.
When you no longer expect, and no longer follow.
When the known is no more familiar, and the search is a new birth.

There comes a time…
When you live the moment instead of lusting for tomorrow.
When clothes, furniture, houses, and all belongings return to be stuff.
When your eyes are wide open when closed. When your heart bumps gratefulness in times of aching.
When suffering is rewarding, and mindfulness is a way of life.

There comes a time…
When you leave to enter again.
When you check out from the make-believe world, and step into the real one with your true self bursting out: I knew it! I knew it!
When everything suddenly makes sense, and you’re in tune with the whole universe.
When benediction fills the empty hole inside instead of things.

There comes a time…
When being there for someone is no longer an obligation, but a loving choice.
When your doubt turns to a hunch, and the ugliness you used to see in the world turns to a beautiful ever-changing masterpiece.
When you look in the eyes of someone — anyone — and see their souls instead of their hidden intentions, and you forgive them.
When you start looking at things to hear their stillness.
When you and the trees become best friends, when you sing the song of liberation along with the birds, and when nature echoes with your highest self.

There comes a time…
When you close your eyes more often, to absorb the glory of a moment.
When you fall in love for the first time with your body.
When you become your best friend.
When the mirror shows you your ultimate truth instead of accumulated judgments.
When you feel connected while touching the grass barefooted.
When baby grass grows on everything you touch.
When you know the Universe is saying ‘Hello’ to you every time the breeze moves your hair.

There comes a time…
When silence is your favorite music, and sleep is another way to stay awake.
When dreams are whispering maps and time is life itself.
When desires are of a little importance, and love is simply you.
When laugh is a dance, and tear is a confession.
When hugs are medicine, and being alive is a soul-enchanting experience.
When you turn in and observe the skies within you, deep and infinite.

Don’t resist it. Just be alerted. Witness it, and create a space for it to happen.
Don’t rush it out, it’ll come, it’ll come, not a minute before its time, and not a minute after.
Don’t force it, for it may slip away.
Know that it’s coming.
Welcome it with arms wide open and joy in the heart.
And when it does, sip it, one sip at a time.
You are now conscious of your consciousness, and that’s all you need to be in order to be
Everything you went through has grown a new feather in your young wings.
Every heartache, every cut through your veins, and every restless breath has added a shaded color to your piece of art.
All the torn feelings, the question marks torturing your tiny head and the urge to understand and to be understood were steps, small steps, on the way to remind you of who you really are.
Now you’re complete, harmoniously complete, invitingly complete.
Fly away, back home.

The Kind of Love - by Namal Siddiqui

The Kind of Love

By Namal Siddiqui

I am not talking about romantic love,
I am talking about the love for life,
for living, for being alive.
Love that feels like thirst in a marathon
but you need to keep going to get to the finish line.
The kind of rush you feel right before presenting something you’ve been working on passionately for weeks.

Let this love be apparent,
Put it on display for the world to see.
Let it trickle from the corner of your eyes,
let it beam back into my eyes,
let it drip from every word you speak,
let it bleed from every wound inflicted on you,
in its search, in its cause.

I am simply talking about the kind of love that keeps you going.
The believing kind of love.
Not pretentious, not selfish, not temporary.

وطنٌ يبحث عن سلام - by Rand Abou Assaleh

وطنٌ يبحث عن سلام

الشاعرة رند أبو عسلة 

في زمن الحروب
لم يبقى في قلبي حلماً
إلّا أن أشتري لوطني السلام
أهناك من يبيع السلام؟
أغمض عينيّ وأمشي
والعالم حقلٌ من ألغامْ
بشرٌ زرعوه بالألغام
شوّهوا فيه الأحلام
أنا منذ أن كنت صغيرة
أحلم بالسلامْ

كان والدي يحدّثني عن وطنْ
وضعوه في كفنْ
وقلب والدي كان قد بقي هناك
أتعلمون أصدقائي
ما معنى أن نخسر الوطن؟
ما معنى أن تقف حمامةٌ بيضاءُ
على كتفٍ وتبكي على وطن؟

يا أرض الشام عودي
حمام الشام ينتظرُ
مآذن الشام تنتظرُ
كنائس الشام تنتظرُ
السلام… السلام… السلام

In a Lonesome Thunderstorm - by Paniz Kimiaei

In a Lonesome Thunderstorm

By Paniz Kimiaei

Winter came and summer went
The clouds went dark
And the chills overcame
People hid in the safety of their homes
For the wind came howling with a thunderstorm
That left people in shivers and children in tears
Yet a lonely soul came out wondering
For he found beauty in the deadly storm
Which could cause magnificent sightings before ones eye
With wide spread arms he felt freedom
In the dark cold streets
He closed his eyes and found peace
His grief stricken heart enjoyed the tears of the clouds
For once he did not feel alone
As the night kept him company
Grieving with him for his vacant soul
The night sky cleared
And the stars came out
The lonely man left to the shadows of the night
People came out to enjoy the cool weather of the serene night
Yet no one saw the wondering soul
Waiting for the next thunderstorm

Powerless - by Sumayya Sideek


By Sumayya Sideek

It starts out with guilt, almost everything does.
Then it tremendously concludes itself becoming worry instead.
We are embodied by a deflection of others, a reflection of their point of being,
their aura, their energy…

We the action and they the reaction.
But wait, is this the typical format of things?
Are we all just sets of rules we built ourselves?
Forever caught trying to explain what’s beneath this shell?
A shell that’s eating me alive?
Because humanity comes with judgment,
and my assumptions?
They keep racing against my will, painting a transparent vision that barricades me from the rest of the world.

I mean,
I would love you, but I’m not going to give in to you.
I’d respect you, yet seek all possible ways to leave you.
I would enjoy your company, but run away from it with every chance I get.
I am flawed as the word flawed can be taken with every word you see, with every meaning leading it on to be.

I’ve been stubborn as you could tell because to me, my battles are mine.
To me, you can’t help, yet I’m going to keep trying.
Because to me, that’s just how it’s supposed to be.
So I’m sorry mom, I’m sorry dad, if I’ve ever let you down
but I’m even sorrier for shunning out advices in the past and the future to come.

I’m going to regret it, but nagging never works
I’m a broken record; I can’t be replaced.
My tongue, it’s honest,
but if life is a balance between holding on and letting go, I call life a liar
because to me, holding on is letting go.
Letting go of myself, letting go as a trip, a step after step with all that guilt ought to be.
Yet, I still hold on.
Just as I’ll still hold on to you.

This is me inking out my guilty, blood stained woes.
After all the words I’ve uttered so soon for far too long, can you blame these chapped lips?
I’m a broken glass that carefully tries to mosaic its place into beauty
because as I sit here gasping for air, feeling up my goose bumps, all I keep reminding myself is that this cannot be it.
As with all of these new faces I’ve made, I’m trying to reseek that hero I once was, that mask immersed beneath my wounds, wondering if it’s still alive and really worth bringing back.

أتذكرك يا حبي - by Nour Abughaida

أتذكرك يا حبي

الشاعرة نور أبو غيدا

أتذكرك في ليالي صيفية
في نسيم عليل على شواطئ رمال ذهبية
في ضحكات الأطفال الشقية
في ألحان عود شرقية

أتذكرك في حب مجنون و في لهفة العيون
في دقات قلب عاشق للجنون و في اشتياق الروح للهدوء
أتذكرك في أمنيات كانت أسرارها مع النجوم
و في كلمات غزل على أضواء الشموع

أتذكرك في لعب و لهو و ضحكات قلب مسرور
وفي همسات اعتراف عاشق وخجل معجب ملهوف
في رقصات مسروقة من عقارب الساعة و من ساعات ليل ساهر بلا حدود
في أمواج بحر على الصخور و في أصداف في سلتي اجتمعت بلا كم معدود
في فساتين بيضاء و في عطر و في تبرج براق

أتذكرك مع رائحة الورد و مع كل باقة جوري وياسمين
أتذكرك مع كل لوعة حنين
و كل أمل بغد جميل

أتذكرك في البسمات و في النظرات و في كل شيئ رقيق
في الصباح و في المساء و في فنجان قهوتي السوداء
في كلامي أمام المرآة و في نظري الى صورتك القديمة كل مساء
في تغريدات العصافير و زقزقتها مع طلوع الشمس و جمال الأجواء
أتذكرك في كل بشرة سمراء و في كل العيون السوداء

أتذكرك في كتاباتي المنسية و في دفاتري القديمة السرية
أتذكرك في جنون الصيف و جمال الربيع و حزن الخريف ووحدة الشتاء
أتذكرك في ساعات النسيان وفي هدوء المساء وفي صخب النهار

أتذكرك في كل مافي الحياة
أتذكرك في أنفاسي و خوفي من أنفاسي أن تنقطع و تقطع معها ذاك
رحمك الله يا حبي … فقد أمسيت الآن شهيد

Tick Tock - by Jamil Adas


By Jamil Adas

Tick-tock the clock struck
Within pillowy dreams my head sunk
Bits of my past crackle into envisioned futures
Infinite dimensions of cognitive conjunctures
Exaltation of a story a brain conjured up
Sensing longevity never lasting

Tick-tock the time tornadoes
Unconscious of its everlasting run, only aware of
The fixed number of beats my heart can drum
The shut eye will dream until it does not
The sun will rise while window panes are locked up
A moonlight will beam
Yet no imaginary dream

Tick-tock the second-hand strung
These words; figures in my brain
I must be beating; soul yet not flung
Sounds are heard, tis thunder and rain
I will be brave

Tick-tock didn’t matter
I’m unperturbed by the clock

Thank you to every writer for the thought infusing poems contributed and
thank you to every passerby for reading the art of our talented poets.

If you would like to have your poem published for the next 
Dubai Poetics edition
send your poem to poetry@dubaipoetics.com

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