I can show you where the brimstone sun has no remorse,
and where devils on horseback, have burned our homes, have pillaged our farms.
A killing spree, the drum of guns, some tried to flee, but died,... each one.
The screams, I dream! Oh, the cries........the cries.......
I try to mute the sound of them
For..., I was there, I hid in fear, was somehow spared, but now I look for
something, ...something, ...something, here, ...someone to care.
A bit of food, a bit of shade, such bitter taste is in my mouth
A world of hate. To have no shoes,...a walking ghost.....
a blistered soul, I have no hope.... but nothing, nothing left.
My eyes are blurred, and fires burn, a heavy world, shouts out despair.
Where are the flowers that used to bloom, where are voices, that once I knew?
There are no flowers here...just flies, in waist-deep dust, and a hot orange sun,
that coughs up sounds of fear and guns, and swords and words against my ears, I
live in fear with no one here.
I'm just a girl, or at least I was.... for just a while.
I was defiled, when found by one
He spared my life, but did not see, I'd rather die than be this girl, who feels the
shame in being free.
I once had a mother, I once had a father, I once had a brother who made me smile
Where did spirits, lift and go, when the devils on horseback came to kill? Spilling
blood as if for fun? For thrill? For what?
Where were the Gods? Where are the ones who turn their heads?
In desert's dust with blood red crust. They poisoned our wells, burned out our land,
ravished and raped, and relished their brand......,
nomads came, leaving shame, evil and horror came like rain.
Janjaweed, the name, I cannot say... I live with shame, a world, insane
I try to sleep, but I cannot........I can't forget and I am lost, the cost too much,
a swollen tongue and calloused feet, across a land of bleached white bones
Alone, alone,....lost and done...a vanished heart......no one sees me
There are no flowers, there are no trees,
Famine as my lone companion, a pool of mud a home to stay,
Life drains out more every day, my belly swells....my eyes are parched,
and I can't tell
if I'm alive, or if I'm dead, dried up tears are what I shed....
Where are the flowers for my head? I've been scorned,
all I have, and all I see is wind and rain, sorrow and pain
thorns, and dust, and a grave, that waits for me
Devils on Horseback – The Darfur genocide (ongoing) The Janjaweed (translated,
devils on horseback) slaughter and rape the women, men and children of Darfur. As
of today, 480,000 people have been “exterminated” and 2.8 million displaced.
Let's not turn our heads away from this, or from other atrocities being committed
throughout the world.
In midst of night,
When I was deep in slumber,
The memory rattled,
Eyes sunk with fear,
Saw the houses crumble,
The trees tremble,
The thunder storm made me nimble,
The ocean in fumble,
Tried to reach me and hug me in grumble.
I went slowly to the balcony,
Tried to reach out to see this mesmerized agony,
The agony was far from imagination,
It’s a terrifying situation,
God is slowly destroying its creation.
The waves shook the landscape,
The geography is jeopardized,
The houses drowned,
And with it are the people,
Cries of the birds,
Made the atmosphere filled with shrill,
The painful and subdued voice of the animals,
Made it sure of their fatal deaths.
The water is beneath,
Thunderstorm is above it,
No place for shelter,
The houses gradually decreased,
With water slowly increased,
I saw human beings floating in it,
I knew some of them, were also in it,
Saw the animals gradually going deep in it,
Trees are getting shaved,
Houses are getting razed,
The plateau near my house is gone beneath.
The things happened so quickly,
And it was so horrifying,
that I forgot my own situation,
Now I am in pain and sorrow,
for what I have seen slowly,
Happening beneath my eyes.
With this grief and agony in my heart,
I turned back to get inside the house,
But I was knee deep in water,
And the water is rising faster,
I am late in making my action,
Now my life and my existence is in jeopardy,
And with the flashes of the scenes running back and forth,
Made me cripple,
I wasn’t able to run,
I gradually gave up to the faith,
But when I saw the death creeping near to me,
A terrible fear ran through me,
My face became pale,
And the blood started drying up,
I started weeping and prayed to spare me,
But a dark shadow engulfed me,
And a terrible wave galloped me.
I was desperately moaning,
Then suddenly my eyes opened,
My bed was completely dripping from the sweat,
For few minutes I couldn’t make out what’s going on,
But then I realized that it was a dreadful dream.
I closed my eyes and prayed to God,
Thanked him that it was a dream.
It began as a lovely September, 2001, at least, it should have been.....
somewhere lost in the crossfire, between summer and fall
days growing short, and evenings long
But, things are warped into a sense of surreal. What was seen, can it be real?
It's as if bifocals are mixed in a bin, out of focus, glossed over with grim
Someone lets me borrow a broken pencil, I find paper blowing in the acrid wind
my fingers shake with tensile fear....and, I write a goodbye.. I don't know why......
The city, an ediface in shades of gray stone, smoke, rubble and ash,
littered streets, silent people, crying people, screaming people in fright
A playbill shouts, "LIVE! Mandy Patinkin Concert - The Neil Simon Theater",
ripped, and frayed around the edge...blowing into my face, .... now in my hand
How strange....we were there........was that just last night?
It began as a lovely September, 200l, or it should have been.....
Sirens, shattered concrete, sidewalks, shepherding the living into
the arms of someone, or maybe, .... into the arms of no one
Someone is borrowing a cell phone, ... there is smell of burnt sulfer
Bridges, crosswalks, that will take them back into calamity, .. our new reality
Someone lends me a broken pencil, I find paper blowing in the acrid wind
I write a goodbye... I don't know why......
It began as a lovely September, 2001, or it should have been....
For The Challenge "Chopped"
Sponsored By Craig Cornish
Beauty of nature
Why condense it down to God?
Isn’t life enough?
Holocaust Memorial Day, Jan. 27 (Sentanka)
Let us remember
Murder of the innocents
Terror and hate
Jerusalem's Yad Vashem
Sacred place for the victims
Lasst uns erinnern
Mord an den Unschuldigen
Terror und Hass
Jerusalems Yad Vashem
Heiliger Platz für die Opfer
Asesinato de innocentes
Terror y odio
Yad Vashem en Jerusalén
Sagrado lugar de víctimas
Note: The International Holocaust Memorial Day on January 27 marks the anniversary of the
liberation of the concentration camp of Auschwitz-Birkenau, the largest Nazi death camp on
January 27, 1945. The camp was liberated by Soviet troops and over 7,000 remaining
prisoners, mainly ill or near to death, were freed. It is estimated that at least 1.3
million people were deported to Auschwitz between 1940 and 1945. About 1.1 million were
murdered. Auschwitz-Birkenau is situated in Poland and was inscribed on the World Heritage
List in 1979.
I do not know?
(for the countless women, names unknown, who bore the brunt of Apartheid, and who fought the racist system at great cost to themselves and their families, and for my mother, Zubeida Moolla)
Pregnant, your husband on the run,
your daughter, a child, a few years old,
they hauled you in, these brutish men,
into the bowels of Apartheid's racist hell.
They wanted information, you gave them nothing,
these savage men, who skin happened to be lighter,
and white was right in South Africa back then,
but, you did not cower, you stood resolute,
you, my mother, faced them down, their power,
their 'racial superiority', their taunts, their threats.
You, my mother, would not, could not break,
You stood firm, you stood tall.
You, like the countless mothers did not break, did not fall.
You told me many things, of the pains, the struggles,
the scraping for scraps, the desolation of separation
from your beloved Tasneem and your beloved Azad,
my elder sister and brother, whom I could not grow
up with, your beloved children separated by time, by place,
by monstrous Apartheid, by brutish men,
whose skin just happened to be lighter.
You told me many things, as I grew older,
of the years in exile, of the winters that grew ever colder.
You were a fighter, for a just cause,
like countless other South African women,
you sacrificed much, you suffered the pangs,
of memories that cut into your bone, your marrow,
you resisted a system, an ideology, brutal and callous and narrow.
Yes, you lived to see freedom arrive, yet you suffered still,
a family torn apart, and struggling to rebuild a life,
all the while, nursing a void, that nothing could ever fill.
I salute you, mother, as I salute the nameless mothers,
the countless sisters, daughters, women of this land,
who fought, sacrificing it all for taking a moral stand.
I salute you, my mother, and though you have passed,
your body interred in your beloved South African soil,
you shall remain, within me, an ever-present reminder,
of the cost of freedom, the struggles, the hunger, the toil.
I salute you!
(for the brave women of South Africa, of all colours,
who fought against racial discrimination and Apartheid)
The impending night has fallen upon us
It woke with much persistence
Our hearts fled from its rage like a doe from a rifle
But the blast had already been made. . .
People fall like rain
The clouds are crestfallen with grief
And the darkness has no mercy
Rain soaks...leaves an impact
The falls are devastating...
She was so strong, like a diamond she shined
Only to burn away and be one with the grime
I never saw her go
But the angry darkness of her essence—strangely glows...
He choked on his words, his memory
Like a child swallowing a pill
It is sticking in our throats
Against our will
And the dose ever grows. . .
Who will stop the night?
You wicked thing how achingly stormy you have become!
Rich in your light as it smothers you whole
Leaving the rest to the droll sound of its toll
As they watched in angry happiness
The smoke of her spirits filling our hearts
No expressions...heavy depressions
He was left to melt and rebuild
His wick ignites—burns are second nature
Though images are hard to swallow
She still talks to our souls
Her story still to be told
Like diamonds never found
A flame of hope hovers
We remain instilled in the rot
The darkness smothers
Its heavy slumber always waking
Once so close to his family
They are dead now
So close to his friends
They are also dead
Caused by hate
Caused by discrimination
We hear them now, the beating bass of drum,
the marchers, though loose-knit, from Wall Street's rolls,
too soon will turn to cadence; those who come,
all have no memory of Hitler's goals.
Their good intentions caved in, to survive,
to placing blame to where it shouldn't go!
And all too soon, the buzzing of the hive
lays every blame to things we shouldn't know.
Though mournful is the tune that plays along
to every drumbeat, calling for return
of nights of death--the old recall the song,
but much too late recall how bodies burn.
And Stars of David are replaced on every wall,
by Swastikas demanding rights for all.
Note: Every year the government sets aside a Day of Remembrance for the
Holocaust. This year it is the first week of May. Please share this with everyone so
that none of us or our children ever forget.
They rounded us up one day in the rain
Herded us into a cattle-car train
We were just Jews, it was simple and plain
The pain – we must always remember
When the train stopped there were so many dead
Ushered into two groups, tears were all shed
Weak ones culled out and away they were led
That said – we must always remember
None of this ever has made any sense
Staying alive in good health our defense
We'd spend every day praying out by the fence
Consequence – we must always remember
At night we would gather and in silence we pray
Pray that we make it through one more day
What tomorrow would bring – no one could say
Today – we must always remember
Each morning we’d line up; they’d walk down the rows
Deciding who lives; deciding who goes
Each morning we’d pray that we weren’t one of those
God knows – we must always remember
And the stench in the camp from the ovens by noon
Reminded us all of our impending doom
Relief from this hell-hole could not come too soon
Repugn – we must always remember
There were thousands of us left back in the damp
In our bunks, in the ovens, or the cattle-car ramps
And surviving this ordeal left its own stamps
The camps – we must always remember
So each year we gather on Remembrance Day
To honor the loved ones who have passed away
And the horrible price that they had to pay
We pray – we will always remember