Edition XII

December 2016

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caixas-boxes-by-farah-chamma-photo-by-rima-al-sammaraePhoto credit: Rima Al Sammarae

Caixas (Boxes)

By Farah Chamma

Não venho daqui
I don’t come from here

Não venho de là
I don’t come from there

Não preciso “vir”
I don’t have to “come”

Só preciso ser, estar
I just have to be

Eu falo Árabe,
I speak Arabic

Mas prefiro o idioma do mar
But prefer the language of the sea

E as vezes no silencio
And sometimes in silence

Nem preciso falar
I need not even speak

Eu sou ninguém,
I am no one,

Sou um pensamento passageiro,
I am a fleeting thought,

Sou a forma do ar
I am the form of air

O mundo tenta me definir,
The world defines me

Me colocar nessas caixas
Puts me in these boxes

Ele quer me encaixar:
It wants to box me in

“Muçulmana, ela tem grana, ela vem do Oriente Médio.. E a Burca, ela deve usar.”
“Muslim, rich, Middle Eastern. She must wear the burqa”

“Ela é mulher, árabe, oprimida, ela veio pro Brasil para se liberar.”
“She’s a woman. Arab. Oppressed. She came to Brazil to be liberated.”

Eu sou ninguém, eu sou você
I am no one, I am you

Você é eu
You are me

Mas eles me ensinaram julgar
But they taught me to judge

“Brasileiro, farofeiro, só joga futebol, dança samba, mora nas favelas, fuma maconha, é perigoso, é corrupto”
“Brazilian. Rugged. Only plays football. Dances Samba. Lives in favelas. Smokes weed. Dangerous. Corrupt.”

“Não vá para esse lugar!”
“Don’t go there!”

Mas hoje estou aqui,
But today I am here

com vocês
With you

Eu me descobri, de novo
I discovered myself, once again

Nesse olhar, e nesse olhar
In your eyes, and yours

Eu tento entender
I try to understand

No lugar de criticar
Instead of criticizing

Tento entender tudo
I try to understand everything

Até os cabelos do Neymar!
Even Neymar’s hair!

Eu sou ninguém,
I am no one,

Apenas um ser humano,
Barely a human being

Nesse mundo tão grande,
In this vast world

Tão pequeno
Small world

Tento me achar.
I try to find myself

Não procuro no Globo News,
I don’t look in Globo News,

Procuro acima, procuro no céu,
I look beyond, in the sky

Nas árvores, nos mendigos, nas ruas
In the trees, in the beggars, in the streets

nos livros, na poesia,
In books, in poetry

Para no final, me achar em vocês.
To find myself, at the end, in you.

karma-awaits-by-saachi-devnani-photo-by-andrew-neelPhoto credit: Andrew Neel

Karma Awaits

By Saachi Devnani

Lost in the chambers of gloom
uninvited I landed at doom,
gates to glittering glee
locked without a key.

The scheme was deliberate,
devil’s craving to celebrate
a fabricated triumph,
they perceive themselves as giants.

Bloated by hollow pride,
splashing droplets of snide,
an attempt to slaughter my aim,
the craze they wish to tame.

Ignorant of intense passion, 
those faint-hearted can’t crash in,
with fences high and wide
I have karma by my side.

50-by-mina-liccione-photo-by-quino-alPhoto credit: Quino Al

“In a world where you can be anything, be kind”

By Mina Liccione

50 Moms
Who will never see their kid’s smile
50 fathers
Who can’t hug their child

50 best friends
Wishing they had stayed in better touch
50 enemies
Wishing they had let go of that grudge

50 children
Asking “Why? How? Where?” 
50 empty chairs
Holding nothing but despair

50 caliber gun
Aimed in cold-blood
50 shades of slaughter
Gushing life like a flood

50 types of denial
That say ‘guns are okay’
50 brands of hate
That shout ‘death to all gays!’

50 forms of fear
Thinking the end must be near
50 rainbows of love
Overshadowed by anger and tears

50 States of America
The land of the free where nothing is free
50 more lives taken
By a shooting spree

50 psychotic symptoms
Feeling enraged and isolated   
50 fingers pointing the blame
But maybe it’s themselves they hated
50 prayers for peace
That it may lie ahead
50 people dead
Violence keeps coming instead

50 feet forward
We start to progress
50 feet under
We painfully digress

50 reasons why I didn’t vote for Trump
Do I really need to say?
50 forms of racism
Can’t blame Kanye today

50 ISIS members
Bombing to kill, kill, kill, K,K,K, kill
In the name of religion
But that’s against Allah’s will

50 layers of faith
That a heaven exists 
50 walls not to build
Towards goodness and tolerance we must persist

50 reasons to change
Salvage humanity, Godspeed!
1 reason why nothing will…

Let’s not feed the greed
And teach our seeds
To love not hate
To share smiles despite our fate

Let’s not feed the greed and teach our seeds
That Black Lives do matter 
Even when they’re not making peoples
Bank accounts fatter

Let’s not feed the greed
From violence nothing is freed
(And) All that will matter in the end
Is using 50 flavors of … kindness to transcend

%d8%a7%d9%84%d8%ad%d8%b1%d8%a8-by-philippe-jardak-photo-by-ahmad-minawiPhoto credit: Ahmad Minawi


الشاعر فيليب جرداق

سلَّمتُ قدري للهِ وداخلي أنين الحنينِ                                      بين عظمة الماضي ورهبة الحاضرِ وجلالة المستقبلِ       

رأيتُ الدنيا بسوادها، بحقد الناسِ                                         وجع الأحبّةِ، صرخةُ الأطفالِ، أصوات الضميرِ

ترجو ربّها بالعدلِ، عدلاً كسيف الجلّادِ                                 قاسي القلبِ، جَلآد الروح، صَلْبَ الفؤادِ، بارد اليدينِ    

كتبها جنديُّ اللهِ على لوح العدالة الخاص بالقاضي                   كتبها بدماء الندمِ، بصرخة القلب للرأفةِ، على لوح الدينونةِ             

بعد برهة الزمن، استجاب العليُّ القديرِ                                وأرسل لنا الخاطئين إنذاراً قبل مجيئهِ على غمامٍ للعدلِ      

يوم زارتنا الحرب، داست أرضنا كالنارِ                             كسهمٍ طار في وضحِ النهارِ، بسرعة نجم سقط  في أرض الليلِ            

صوتها صدى الإنذارِ. اهربوا! اختبؤا منّي                           فعدلي قاسٍ عليكم. برصاصي الممزوج زيتاً بنار حقدي      

أقتُلُكُمْ على الحقدِ السائد بينكم، تلك هي محبتي                        وعلى الكذبِ والنفاق السائد بينكم، ذلك يكون لكم وعدي       

خلقتموني من كراهيتكم لبعضكم وللظلم السائدِ                       بين بعضكم، أفلا أكون أنا الحرب المقيّدةْ قاضٍ لكم يا ناسي؟           

ختمت الحرب كلامها. أطلقت إنذارها لنا.                            زادت حقدها علينا وفتكت فينا شيئاً  بعد شيئا عند سماع الأنينِ           

وجع الأمّهاتِ، صرخةِ الأطفالِ، بكاء الآبآءِ                          عتبَ الناسِ، دماءَ الشهداءِ، صلاة الكُهّانِ، آذآنَ الشيوخِ     

.علا صراخ النبات، وجع الأشجارِ. اصفرَّ الإخضرارُ             انقلب السحر على ساحرها، كلٌّ من صنعِ من خلقها. إنها الدمار             

september-by-malak-el-halabi-photo-by-anne-edgarPhoto credit: Anne Edgar


By Malak El Halabi

That September night,
do you remember?
You stretched out your
hand… over the bed
and split the moon,
in half. And butterflies
in the midst of heat
and butterflies came
in the midst of fervor.

That September night,
do you remember?
I was yours and you…
were mine, right there,
between your neck and
the last drop of
sweat, right there
between my left breast
and your pounding heart,
somewhere between two
cries and a whisper, you
were you and I was I.


Polite Decline

By Emma Barratt

Most of the while everything surrounding the press of our knees became strictly irrelevant,
perhaps even nonexistent…
mere mote vibrating around your frequency.
A quiet
acute hum of innocent knowledge.

Earlier that day I had been thinking of longing.
Longing to be,
longing to hold you in my gangly arms
which clutched another drink whilst a story fell from your swollen and bright lips.

there it was beside me
following the slowing slur of his own anatomy.

Sat there still tranced I took another sip that held the power to unbind my tongue,
acceptance was ours
and I knew if I had said something it would have only been maybe.
So I kept it to myself
and directed my eyes towards the protruding moon
hidden behind those trees planted in every suburbia,
always masking the natural beauty of this universe
like yourself in essence.

I was resting,
as was he.
Inquiry and fatigue,
for I love it when he is tired.
A bundle of bones and desire
equipped with a strange brattish ease.

I rose to visit the kitchen and asked dad to dance with me –
polite decline.
It was only you who possessed the willingness that mattered after all.
Beneath me the ground had opened and soon I was lying on the tiled floor,
looking for you from here.
Up always.
My eyes are closing,
find me before yours do too.

the-countryside-by-bijim-dominic-photo-by-hoach-le-dinhPhoto credit: Hoach Le Dinh

The Countryside

By Biji Dominic

I love the countryside, 
I love the naive people, 
I love the natural habitat, 
Yes, she is my sweetheart. 
I love the green lands, 
I love the mountain ranges, 
I love the chattering milky way 
through the rocky mountain, 
I love the highland with shrubs, 
I love the highland mist, 
I love the sun rays piercing through 
the mist, 
I love the toiling class, 
I’m a part of the countryside.


Walls of Blame

By Hind Ibrahim Mohammad

Surrounded by walls of blame
When the fault wasn’t mine 
Neither did I break the walls 
Nor stare at them with hideous shame 
For a righteous mind never falls 
Headline pride never maim 
On that wall I hung a frame 


في داخلي طفلة

الشاعرة ألاء المالكي

كنت جالسة أحتسي قهوتي
و سكون الأجواء يحاكي مشاعري
فإذا بي أعود في سجل ذكرياتي
إلى طفلة صغيرة ملامحها تحاكيني

في جو تملؤه قساوة البرد تدفقت داخلي
جو رسم غشاوة على ناظري
ففقدت تلك الصغيرة التي بدت تناديني
بصوت خافت “لا تنسيني، لا تتركيني”

 فقت للمس يدها الصغيرة في يدي
لكن فقدانها جمد جدران قلبي
فبدا لي كالجو القارس الذي يحاوطني
بارد، جامد، خال من مشاعر كانت لي

 هل خسرتك يا طفلتي؟
سألت و دموعي منسكبة على وجهي
قأجابني صوت خافت همس في أذني
إن بحثت في داخلك بتمعن فستجديني

war-by-hafsah-khan-photo-by-quino-alPhoto credit: Quino Al


By Hafsah Khan

What has our world come down to?
Why have the perils of war started to look like the oceans blue?
A situation we have become so accustomed to,
that now no one even bothers to try and seek the truth.
You promised us you’d solve it soon,
but then why are young children still stuck at its root? 

The problem you created,
its solution you hide.
While the victims cry in vain,
you’re standing there in silence,
leaving their rights denied.

Under those countless layers of lies,
is there a human still alive?
Think about all those nations destroyed,
just for a moment, try and forget about your pride.  

Everyday men are recruited,
and prepared for war.
But is more bloodshed
really the answer to it all?

Is this what we want our world to be?
So broken, so shattered under all that debris.
It can be resolved, I still believe,
you just need to let go, and let them live freely.

reaching-dreams-by-shynu-elizabeth-jacob-photo-by-antonina-bukowskaPhoto credit: Antonina Bukowska

Reaching Dreams

By Shynu, Renju and Eric

Dreams glow like the Christmas star
but we have to climb way high and far.

As little dwarfs we climb on the tree
round the branches, almost free.

Through each branch we turn and smile
as we learn from our fall in a mile.

Up and up you go
chilling up in the snow
reaching up your dream
like tasting the Christmas cream.

gentleman-by-trayle-kulshan-photo-by-luke-porterPhoto credit: Luke Porter


By Trayle Kulshan

I am as sneaky as a tom
cat missing a leg,
I am careful. I know
a single cigarette
is enough to give
your spot away.
I wear new shoes
the same model as the last
with a sturdy sole
that hides my limp.

embrace-by-adel-awad-photo-by-jacob-rankPhoto credit: Jacob Rank


By Adel Awad

When we embrace
It isn’t just bones and skin
Screaming from within
To let each other’s souls in

When we embrace
It is all the lonely nights
Fulfilling their wishes
One more time

When we embrace
It is stardust being magnetically glad
To have found a familiar bunch of specks
It is warmth to all the winters
A squeeze to remember
A cry to absolve
The chaos inside to cease
And let our hearts reverberate
The beat of peace

When we embrace
It isn’t just you and me
But two worlds that are momentarily complete
Where our scars intertwine with our dreams

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 or image published for the next
Dubai Poetics edition
send your poem or request to be a “visual artist” to poetry@dubaipoetics.com

Join us again in our Poetryhood!!

Enjoy more of our earlier editions through these links:

Edition I
Edition II
Edition III
Edition IV
Edition V

Edition VI
Edition VII
Edition VIII
Edition IX
Edition X

Edition XI