#InternationalMigrantsDay artwork and poetry challenge. Have you made artworks about migrants? The theme is “We (live) together” We create together. Have you written unpublished/published about migrants. Please DM me or send a message via my WordPress Site.

Awake at
(After Wendell Berry)

Lying awake images of Yemeni children
Syrian babies, Ebola ridden souls, the hopelessness
The helplessness, ravaged by man-made tsunami of wars
Innocent lives pitted against grace and goodness
of humanity. I lay awake, look into the dark hoping
for the earth and mankind to heal.

Dreaming, waking, tossing, turning,
Awake, cogitating, restless mind spooling
As the earth spins on its axis, the universe
Is at peace, its ritual goes on apace, no change.

Diaspora

One book closed, another opens, a new leaf each day
a dangerous crossing on the Mediterranean sea,
experiences new, strange sea, enervating
new language, sounds, melodies, tastes to savour
slowly settling to a new rhythm, adapting to change.

The memories flash in the inward eye, shadows never
forgotten, picking an old book, thoughts like a flowing river
invisible, shimmering in the starry nights, dream scenes
On the sea, waves beating like silent drums, turning old pages
Dog-eared, much loved, scented, wrapped with emotion.

-Leela Soma

Harvesting in storms

We live in times of anger and hatred
a storm that flies in all directions
from left and right I feel battered
in days with no place for compassion
I read and hear the words of friends
and feel lost and out of time and place.

We the people decided to bomb
the poorest of the poorest peoples
their lands reduced to rows of tombs
leaving them to stack the bodies
in the wreckage of others graves
and wait the churning of another raid

We the rich nations bomb the poor
destroying cultures and rich traditions
such tragedy, there’s no irony here
the rich people’s barren conditions
supported by a false philosophy
that simply maintains exploitation.

So we bomb the poorest nations
and contrive a façade of surprise
that people should desert devastation
want to walk away to cross seas
to risk their lives, lose everything
and want to live a life in peace.

Poets and writers take real care
there is a need now to avoid
words that amplify the heat of despair
death stares back at us from the void
and invites an endless state of war
Is this the legacy we leave our children?

Is this a solution?

Dropping bombs
Intelligent missiles
Collateral damage.

Dropping bombs
Intelligent missiles
Reaper drones.

Collateral damage
Intelligent missiles
Reaper drones.

Intelligent missiles
Reaper drones
Is this a solution?

Reaper drones
Is this a solution?
Collateral damage.

Is this a solution?
Destruction death
Homelessness, starvation.

And then the tide
Of dispossessed
On a Mediterranean shore.

Lament for the Girl of the Morning Sea.

A premonition of merciful peace has emerged
In the morning of this day.

And as if in agreement
Your hand opens to the waves.
In a movement of gratitude,
A moment of quiet acceptance.
I have heard you sing
To the waves crests,
Rise, rise from your depths
Rid me of all pain
I am alone wash over me.

In this bright early hour
You are at once transformed.
Peace adorns you,
Rests on your face.
I have seen you whisper
To the open sky
Touch me, cleanse me
Rid me of all fear.
I am alone wash over me.

Your hair hangs tangled
Stiffly on your eyes,
Green-water droplets
Trickle to your lips.
Your fingers grasp
The waters edge.
The shoreline pierces you,
Welcomes you, calls to you.
I am alone wash over me.

And you lying unseen
A curved silken spine
Broken by spite
The savagery of indifference
And the brutality
Of unmourned death
Move without moving.
Knowing nothing, knowing nothing
In your quiet sadness.
I am alone wash over me.

I have heard you sing
To the waves crests’
Rise from your depths
Rise from your submerged stillness.
I have heard you sing
To the open sky,
Touch me, cleanse me,
Rid me of all pain,
Rid me of all fear.
I am alone wash over me.

Your mother cries for you in her silence
And mourns for another in her isolation.
I am alone wash over me.

-Rob Cullen (18th May 1980.)

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Photo by Paul Brookes

Our Edge

Each time it is a border,
an end of the road,
a new building,
where I am asked same questions
What’s your name?
Where are you going?
Why?

I am discovering my story,
remembering where I have
been, but I recall it as
a
border,
an end of the road,
a new building,
where I am asked same questions
“What’s your name?
Where are you going?
Why?”

Daddy

A soldier moves Dad
with the butt of his rifle.

Why, Dad?

They don’t know where
we belong. he says.

Any English Here?”

Are there any English here? a woman shouts to market day shoppers
in Peel Square before joining
a bewhiskered chap holding
large 7 up bottle perfumed with ale.

Me garden were best on street,
gorgeous Azaleas, Petunias, Roses.
Started disappearing. Spotted immigrants across road in rented. Challenged them.

“You English think
you own everything!”
they told us.

Thirty years down
mines to get this, cock.
Thirty bleeding years.
I own me house, cock.

“You English think
you own everything”

Abroad for a better life.
Abroad for an easier life.
Abroad where we are worth more.
Proud of who we are.

-Paul Brookes (All published by the late Reuben Woolley on his “I Am Not A Silent Poet”)

3 thoughts on “#InternationalMigrantsDay artwork and poetry challenge. Have you made artworks about migrants? The theme is “We (live) together” We create together. Have you written unpublished/published about migrants. Please DM me or send a message via my WordPress Site.

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