Poetry

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By Ather Zia Our wounds are labeled forgettable, Shahid Our life before death is imperceptible, Shahid Billboards proclaim, Kashmir: A Paradise God has a reason to be chimerical, Shahid Memory threads tied to wooden roses at Khankah Even simple prayers are incomprehensible, Shahid At Naseem Bagh, your presence was ephemeral Now, your absence is a spectacle, Shahid Our laments are lost, our yearnings are empty Grief— the source of all that is poetical, Shahid. Fear has abandoned us; Hope has embraced us Yours are the best words in our arsenal, Shahid Your last illegible scrawl, an emblem of your name

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By Farzana Munshi Her hands are stretched out to the lap of cliffs She’s climbing to heaven by treading falls Her eyes are sapphire Hair woven in gold silk threads Her soul is the pearl harboured in heaven Body’s scent pure as a new born Alas!  Why is she drowned in thought? Why are you blue? The part I bore is turning my fate low, she says, Lowering her gaze, the breeze gusting My children are splicing away my love essence I wail but they rend my heart apart Disdaining every element that holds my breath Their eyes cold, their

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By Ikram Ullah I belong to a valley grand Himalayas the Pir Panchal Jehlum’s mystifying tranquility Lidder’s restlessness I belong to a valley forlorn a Stalingrad The Red Square without a Kremlin Wall imperialistic want I belong to a valley so bereft traitors sit on res publica thrones My valley echoes Shurkhs of Nund Reshi Waakhs of Lal Ded hundreds of years later I belong to a valley dreary Khazr thinking his fate still on the shores of Lake Walur perplexed at posts without post offices— Agha is no more seeing it at Midnight from Delhi I belong to a

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By Furqan Fazili A bird weeps alone in a fruitless tree Sun crosses the horizon Moist graves don’t level Unaltered shadows glimmer in smoky air Unwritten lines on hands hide wails A prayer goes unanswered again A garden of corpses floats on a lake A boatman rows on saffron water Red bark of Chinar nailed to slumber White fortress bleeds tonight Thorny hands water a sprouting enemy Autumn blooms in spring The Angel of Life promises death Chaotic breeze combs time Eyes wait at the shrieking doors A liberal soul in hidden corners Red snowflakes cover a road to heaven A

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By Mohammad Tabish Once again night falls I haven’t slept for decades Don’t call it a nightmare I am already dead The stones I throw used to be my home once This hunger is no humor I have taken abode amidst yellow stones My voice froze trying to reach you No archangel fell to witness the holy in me I am no son of Abraham I am nothing but a slaughtered sheep This ought to be a sin I have no name Am I a bleeding prisoner beyond the interrogation gates Or a withered odorless flower? I am no more

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By Mehraj Dar I’ve a right I’ve a choice I’ve a reason I’ve a voice I cried & screamed They deaf & blind I’m Kashmir My soil is drenched Colour is red I was tortured I was burnt I was stormed I was raided I was murdered I was hanged I’m Kashmir My soil is drenched Colour is red I’m gifted I’m blessed I’m a legacy I’m a history I was heaven Now I’m hell I’m Kashmir My soil is drenched Colour is red I’m dejected I’m neglected I’m divided My right denied My voice muzzled I’m not tired I’m

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 سمیہ فردوس ہانٹھ سورُۓ شہر چھُ دارِ بَر ترؤپرِتھ ژء تہِ جانانا  ہانکل تھاو یَنۂ  کالۂ  ؤنل پشپےیۂ میاٰنس سینس مَنز تنۂ  وآنجہ ِ لؤگم شُشر بچہ دانہِ گوم وَٹھ شَہَس ژام  وَرَ میون یہ ماجُت تھر تھرِء لَد پریْتھ جمعہ نیْمازِ  پتۂ بانبرِ، تنبلہِ، تیلہِ تۂ  وؤشلہِ بَجۂ مشیدِ ہنزِ ڈیڈِ تَل ٹئیر گیسچ  ؤنل کھسہِ میانیْن چشمن پؤس  بَنہِ میون جگر کنہِ جنگۂ  پتۂ وآنجہِ گژھْیم چھگ جانانا ژء بیْہ لؤتہِ پآٹھی میانہِ  دلچہِ  کال کوٹھرِ مَنز ہانکل دِتھ ارمان بْنِتھ زیْنہ برونٹھٕے جیل کڈ٠ ٠سمیر راہ سندِ باپتھ، یسند موصوم تن ٢٠١٠ہس منز وحشیانہ تشددک شکار سپد

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By  Shubhrastha Cultivated love withers with weather-ed change. Just as the radios distributed have withered away in rust, in want of signals- that hang limply in desperate search. The tendons of snapped cables, doctored channels, filtered news. News freeze in memory too curfewed to kiss the caskets called brain sockets- just as my neighbor’s blood lies buried under layers of this snowy ‘paradise’ in an awaited wish to unstiffen and thaw. To release bloody tears of ‘special status’ happiness. Can you see the bunkers behind the green paints? Or do you think it’s the lush green valley rosy with bloody

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By Huzaifa Pandit “Jo guzartay thay Daag par sadmay Faiz ab kaifiyat sabhi ki hai!” -Faiz Ahmed Faiz [I]t commenced a century ago as a poet composed his elegy on his regality that had since long been a mere formality. Torn between war and exile he wished for a wilderness to swallow the savage civilization. The pigeons did not cease their flight and at last: a blotched debased dawn! They hoisted their flags dyed in the colours of tyranny. They said that one stood for peace and prosperity and the other stood for a piety and religiosity. They rubbished the allegations

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By Shubh Mathur Chrar-i-Sharief Some day After the Occupation we will return to Chrar-i-Sharief and remember. Weeping at the tomb miraculously spared by the fire the soldiers set to burn the town. The people who told of hiding for three days in the mountains while fire and artillery reduced their homes to rubble and ash. The barbed wire soldiers checkposts surrounding the rebuilt town. We will return to the shrine on the hilltop and greet the saint feed the pilgrims and the pigeons. Smile. Some day. The Meadows Some day After the Occupation We will take a picnic to the

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