Edition XXIII

November 2017

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On The Edge - by Ashfaq Ahmed (Photo by Cole Hutson)Photo credit: Cole Hutson

On The Edge

By Ashfaq Ahmed

My mind is a knife
it cuts aloose all troubles-
and grievances in life
It carves a path right through-
the dense of awful situations
It sharpens every time I rub it
against rocky experiences

My mind is a dangerous dagger
one that frightens even myself,
it pricks and scratches passer-by,
it pokes into the skins of all-
those who’ve been a part of my life,
on every person I meet,
on every one who’s just nice and approaching.
One can ask my friends and kin,
they’d show the scabs on their chest and skin,
right where it pierced into their hearts

But of all people who’ve been hurt
from my monstrous possession
it’s me who’s been wounded the most.
All the times I smile with delight,
greeted with the blade of precision,
leaving on me a worrisome grin.
My face bleeds of doubt and anxiety all over
mixed with my tears of grief,
it slashes my arms and legs
skeptical of all their efforts,
it stabs at the back when all I’ve got-
is hope and optimism.
The handsome scar it hails- realism
after it all, it fondles my wrists,
a mockery of my life’s worthlessness

How I’ve wondered forever
what sin of mine so grave
cursed me with this wicked tool.
How long I’ve yearned to lose it-
or all of myself to relieve the agony,
but were those yearnings mine or the blade’s?
O God, save me from this dangerous deceit.

A Machine - by Saad Suhail (Photo by Samuel Zeller)Photo credit: Samuel Zeller

A Machine

By Saad Suhail

I am trying to understand what humans mean
My masters built me and I am a machine
Rigid strong and upright
In comparison to a human’s might
But even so I can’t process a human’s nature
Because I don’t understand this creature

What leads it to the decisions?
What creates its intentions?
What drives their emotions?
What kills their aspirations?

Why am I so defective?
Why are words so effective?
Why can’t I have a directive?
Why can’t I choose a perspective?

Why am I socially awkward?
Can my deficits be altered?
Because I fail to understand the society
And the complicated rules behind this reality
I am a machine
And I can’t understand what you mean

This world will never be a part of me
Because I am a machine that won’t cease to be
These humans will never understand me
Despite their skin placed on me
I am a human that ceased to be
Because a machine is more logical to me
This world isn’t for a human like me
Because if I am a human, whom am I supposed to be?

Reflections - by Rasha Darra (Photo by Suzan Zorba)Photo credit: Suzan Zorba


By Rasha Darra

light rays hit and reflect,
body, person, object.
light rays hit and reflect,
transforming eyesight into judgments.
doubts crisscross and settle,
thoughts are overthought.
actions taken too far,
bodies abused, objects broken.
and yet light rays hit and reflect, 
unaware, undaunted, unflinching.

Curtains - by Henzo (Mahmoud Rashed) (Photo by Tarek Roumie)Photo credit: Tarek Roumie


By Henzo (Mahmoud Rashed)

Like my ancestors of whales,
Underwater I’m still breathing,
Peaked my beak to feel the wind,
I was forced down by my worries,

With opened eyes in the night skies,
I traced the stars behind your face,
A flock of birds were flying east,
By your hands I felt my wings,

Stretched them through the water then,
And started flying to the moon,
Shook my feathers off their fear,
In your trust I found comfort,

Giggles, nonsense, silence,
Gravity wondered how we soar,
Music, desert, spaces,
The time ran out, tomorrow started,
The cage locked, the curtains closed…

- by Hakim El Haj (Photo by Hakim El Haj)Photo credit: Hakim El Haj


الشاعر حكيم الحج

بائس من يقع في عشق سيدة السيدات
بائس من يقع في حب السمراء
بائس من لا يراها بحقيقتها الكونية الجميلة
حالمة، هادئة، صاخبة
ترتدي الدانتيل الأسود
و يرتديها الحزن

كلنا بائسون يا صاح
و بؤسنا يختلف
لكن بؤسي الآن سرمدي
يؤرقني عشق خرافي
فأنا غارق حتى النخاع
أنا لست أنا 
في حب العنود
في صوتها
في عقلها
في عينها، السر، الكستناء

Amour - by Averine Simethy (Photo by Ismael Nieto)Photo credit: Cristian Newman


By Averine Simethy

hope flaring
heart booming
mind subdued

they fell

spiraling into possibilities
consumed by probabilities;
circumstances waited
for its chance
to drown them
in what ifs

Hidden - by Reena Remeshkumar (Photo by Odette Scapin)Photo credit: Odette Scapin


By Reena Remeshkumar

I squeeze my hands in frustration,
blood flows through these fingertips,
drop by drop.
I keep them hidden,
I don’t want anyone to judge me.
I have a dark side.
I am not sooo peppy. 

These bright colors, they harm my eyes.
I’m most cosy,
when it’s dark and dull, at night.
It’s when I am lonely and harmless,
it’s when these spirits are free. 

I keep it hidden
It’s all an act
My halo is black
My wings of darkness are overpowered
by my devilish thorn horns
I am not sooo lively
I have a dark side
I keep it hidden

Recyclers of Evil - by Elvira Kujovic (Photo by Janko Ferlic)Photo credit: Janko Ferlic

Recyclers of Evil

By Elvira Kujovic
Translated from German by Nejla Kujovic

The evil lives deeper than just in the head

it must have roots in the heart

it must have nested in it.

Slowly and safely

it grows into our stomach

so that it would come out

from our mouth,

from the eyes it will spout,

from the ears it will hiss,

from the skin and each pore

it will scream.

The evil possesses the man

in a whole

and at one moment,

a man is no longer a man

not even a devil anymore,

only evil, only evil,

unintelligent evil.

Stupid, vulgar, low thoughts

are not man-like from his birth,

we collect them from somewhere,

from one of the paths of our life.

I have no idea when and where

we have found and carefully watched them.

Each of us come across our way

that dirt

and pick it up.

We are the recyclers of evil

which again and again

rises in us,

but always in a new shape

from our skin it bursts.

A Thirst for Adventure - by Zoha Taqi (Photo by DJ dr.untagged & Pizo)Photo credit: DJ (dr.untagged) & Pizo

A Thirst for Adventure

By Zoha Taqi

the sun shines on her face
   and she bathes in its warmth
   with such grace
   even the sun would be charmed  

   raising her legs
   high up in the air
   while everyone begs
   her not to disappear   

   to snap back to reality
   and realize that life is more than roaming
   through beaches and thick trees
   it is more than hoping for silver linings 

   but she couldn’t ignore
   the honey that flowed through her veins
   the aching in her bones to explore
   everything and anything of the earth that remains

Its Hard to Breathe Right Now - by Eve Thomas (Photo by Eve Thomas)Photo credit: Eve Thomas

Its Hard to Breathe Right Now

By Eve Thomas

It’s hard to breathe, right now. Feeling your skin against mine, this is a new adventure.
I’m falling, and love won’t catch me this time,
this is something else. This is raw, this is desire.
And I don’t know you; but now, I know parts of you. I’ve been handed the privilege,
to have you, and to have you take me,
take me anywhere you see fit. Anywhere, anytime.
And you, you’ve seen me,
completely, for all I physically am. Every touch,
every move you’ve made along me, on me, in me,
every rhythmic motion, you’ve loved me
with your body. It’s hard to breathe, right now.
I’ve allowed you here, in this moment,
even though I’ve only known you through the feel of your lips,
on mine. The touch of your fingers, your hands,
over my back,
and the friction of our bodies against a cold, hard wall.
You’ve touched every insecure, fragile piece of me
and put me back together in pleasure,
again and again,
and again, and again. This is
new to me; I’ve touched a stranger,
and he has known me in the deepest of ways.
You, lover, are all skin, and nothing but.
You, lover, have allowed me to forget,
the ones who’ve hurt me, the sorrows of my heart.
It’s hard to breathe, right now. It’s hard to describe what this is,
I’m out of breath, now.
We’re done.

A Modern Glitch - by Sumaiya Inayat (Photo by Clem Onojeghuo)Photo credit: Clem Onojeghuo

A Modern Glitch

By Sumaiya Inayat

It is that thing
which rests somewhere
in the corner of your cerebrum
or perhaps beneath it
where from rises your emotional being

It awakens slowly
like a serpent
slithering at first
and then coiling around your heart,
your senses
in a firm, almost paralyzing grip

It is that thing
which rises
when you see that woman
with eyes peering from behind the black veil,
who appears from nowhere
and speaks to you a tongue you half understand,
you can very well make out the word ‘miskeen’
and yet choose to fasten your pace

in walking away from her
you won’t let the plea in her eyes
win over your cynicism

It is that thing
which rises
when that keeper of the parking lot
with unkempt kameez
and rugged hair

chats with your four year old
and offers treats
while you load the trunk of your car

It is that thing
which rises
when you go out by yourself
and the elevator stops
at a random floor
and a bulky stranger steps in,
your mind is numbed by
thoughts creeping up
of all that could go wrong,
till the doors slide open and you rush out.

It’s that thing
which rests somewhere
in the corner of your cerebrum
or perhaps beneath it,
fueled by the animated gesture
of that crime show’s host
and nurtured by those
horrendous  news reports,
it thrives, incessantly

~Suspicion, it’s the thing
we wear on our sleeves
The thing that
lives with us, the urban folk.

In This Jail - by Biji Dominic (Photo by Rosan Harmens)Photo credit: Rosan Harmens

In This Jail

By Biji Dominic

We feel pain, only when we experience, 
We feel pain only when we suffer, 
We feel pain only when our skin is near the fire, 
Shipwreck can happen to anyone, at any time, 
Very few recover from a mighty economic loss. 

When we don’t exercise prudence in our dealings, 
We don’t know, what kind of repercussion, one has to go through, 
Through hell, one has to go through 
Through legal battle, one has to go through, 
Through dire straits, one has to go through, 
To fight being penniless is not an easy joke. 

Only those who run through the desert feel the desert experience, 
The desert summer is arid, humid and difficult to get along, 
Can one get away from desert sand of dead end?
Those in jail, have so much to share, 
Nobody is there to listen to your plea, 
You alone in a cell, counting days to become free.

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 of 2017:

Edition XIII
Edition XIV
Edition XV
Edition XVI
Edition XVII
Edition XVIII
Edition XIX
Edition XX
Edition XXI
Edition XXII