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Take a seat, you are now in the village square. Enjoy!
Flirting With Khartoum: A Ghazal

    In this poem, Ahmad Holderness pens an ode to the Sudanese ancient city of Khartoum   Who are you now City where love reared herself a throne molded From dust   Blue and white skirts flow to the nape of your waist, inviting Snake on a desert; I’m a pattern in your dust   Mud house, melting like a pillar of salt, with stars Gazing from behind heaven’s tears, I become stardust   A boy begged for…

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In The Kernel of Service

    In this poem, Richard Inya bemoans the piteous fate of pensioners – men and women who spend their years working to better the society only to be treated like worthless beings at old age.   An armed revolution Rages against quietness In the belly of starving retirees   Their intestines are trapped snakes Struggling to break loose Ever seen they that chew silence And swallow air?   Pity is a bucketful of a minute silence Harvested from…

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Portrait of an Astronomer Observing the Night Sky from St. Catherine’s, Sinai

      Iskandar Haggarty’s exclusively stylistic poem sheds light into the known and the unknown, questioning their effect on human feelings and nature.    perhaps it’s Salah El Din and perhaps not. perhaps the king Ptolemy and the scholar Ptolemy were brothers.       perhaps the mother of the night sky sheds her silken dress like comets falling as letters, inscribing lovelorn dunes. perhaps   the astronomer asks questions he’s not supposed to ask. perhaps the astronomer falls…

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Three Elegies by Helon Habila

  In  three elegies as daring as they are poignant, winner of the Windhamn-Campbell Prize, Helon Habila pokes at loss and hope….   1.ELEGY FOR A CHILD   This is how the world ends: First, all beauty will die – All that is green and pure, all That inspires, elevates; all talent, for beauty, Like yours, child, is a great talent.   Then all courage will die – all hope, All that keep the fires burning, All that won’t…

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Scattered Longings by Richard Inya

  The sea over there is a mirror; take a look at yourself at the bottom of the sea.   You are strands of seaweeds posing for marauding lives. Oblivion is around the dying.   Your soul speaks to your spirit and the sound reaches Agadez. There is a thing about you in Tripoli but your body borders Italy   The Saharan sun fleeced your skin like a sheep sheared for wool. The sky bullied your longings, Yet you…

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The Revolution is a Woman by Toni Stuart

A collective poem compiled and written by Toni Stuart at the 4th African Feminist Forum, 10th – 12th April, 2016 in Harare, Zimbabwe. The poem uses words, phrases, ideas and thoughts shared by the women throughout the forum.   the revolution is a woman a black, queer, radical, Azania House-occupying, sjambok-wielding Tahir square-protesting raised fist   pumping, bashing, smashing, tearing down Patrick’s invisible walls   the revolution is a woman a hijab-wearing veil-discarding, veil-reclaiming church-going, silent-praying, God-denying voice  …

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