Monthly Archives: July 2014

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Portion of Poetry: 11th of July

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Pen Powered Mic

Hafsah Aneela BashirHafsah is a writer and lyrical activist, and a humanitarian who writes about love, life, and social justice with everything in between. Hafsah has been writing for 15 years, and is a spoken word artist, making appearances for charity and interfaith events as well as open mics in the north of England, UK.

Hafsah gives us a portion of poetry in her piece, ’11th of July’, and will be delivering more of her work at Pen Powered Mic II.

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Hafsah can be found blogging at:


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1 in 5 of Gaza dead are children

They can never crush the will of the Palestinians but in trying, their injustice and persecution is coming to the forefront.. Question is, what will the world do about it?


18 July, 2014 AP
Sobbing and shaking, Ismail Abu Musallam leaned against the wall of a hospital Friday, waiting for three of his children to be prepared for burial. They were killed as they slept when an Israeli tank shell hit their home, burying 11-year-old Ahmed, 14-year-old Walaa and 16-year-old Mohammed under debris in their beds.

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Today while the sun’s out and the heat is scorching,
while the sky’s blue and the birds are singing,
while the Blackpool tower can be seen on the pier,
where the colourful huts match the numerous deck chairs,

I’m going to take you for a walk.

Past the fish and chip shops you’re used to,
the fruit machines and rock that takes ages to chew,
past the pleasure rides and the noisy seagulls,
the rowdy children hiding in the pirate ship’s hull
and all the people sat bathing under the sun,
to a different beach across our shores
and you’re going to question me about this tour.

Like why there are no birds flying above this sea,
and why the beach seems so lifeless and empty.
Why the only towers you can see for miles
are inhabited by soldiers speckling the scene with gunfire.
Why the naval ships across the sea
are ready for battle – waiting for an enemy.
You’ll ask why there’s an acrid stench in the air
and why the fisherman’s huts have disappeared.
Why the bunting looks like shark teeth cutting across us both
and why the smoke and sand are making us choke.

You’ll ask me as I hold tight to your hand,
what the broken doll-like figures are in the sand.
You’ll ask me why they’re grey and unmoving,
and I’ll desperately try to tell you something soothing

That these were not four boys playing footie on the beach
That they had not tried to run to avoid the second shell’s reach
Propelled at them through naval ships of the occupied
No, these are not the little boys who died!
Ill try and say, that they had not left their parents that day
telling them they’ll see them later, when they’d finished their play,
that they had not been laughing, joking- soaking up the sun,
that now their parents will never see them run,
through the fisherman huts,
or collecting crabs and seashells.
Instead Muhammed, Ismail, Ahed and Zakariyah will do this now, in Heaven’s realm.

You’ll see me try and console a father’s broken heart
and I will try to hold it together, but I can’t even start
to contemplate how that father must feel,
when he opens a plastic bag he carries, to reveal
the remains of what is left of his beautiful little boy.

You ask me why this journey has taken us ages,
and I’ll tell you to be patient for wisdom comes in stages.
I’ll explain that some people can only go so far,
and that there are numerous blockades, borders – outsiders are barred.
We are blinded, fed lies with veils around our hearts,
But the good arm themselves with knowledge to impart!
And when that happens, compassion transcends all restrictions-
Sees no colour, no religion, no creed, no race, no categorisations.
You only have to feel, Son, and put yourself in their shoes,
for one day this tragedy could happen to you.
‘They came for them in the morning, they’ll come for us in the night!’
Those that appear mighty, my Son, are not always right.
Open up your eyes, be receptive to the truth,
that Palestine will be free one day, and our patience WILL bear fruit…….

© Hafsah Aneela Bashir



Like the unfurling of an Azerbejaan flower to the call of its Lord
She too grew with a sense of purpose
The delicate head drawn to the sunlight
mesmerised each passerby.
It was never the richness of the scent
( or ) the array of colours
( or ) the strength of the stem holding her upright
that would prompt a man to love

But the discovery that each petal
protected a heart so sacred
that even the bud had no knowledge of the purity within.


Culture of Martyrdom, Mourning in The Time of Occupation

Palestine from a Bird's Eye View

*(Ezz Zanoun / APA images)(Ezz Zanoun / APA images)


In the last six days during operation Protective Edge, Palestinians have been experiencing a widespread massacre while Israelis have been experiencing continued rocket attacks. On one side, Hamas has issued a statement violating international law; declaring all Israelis as targets for rocket attacks. Israel, on the other side, has been consistent in propagating its intentions and efforts to decrease civilian casualties. Despite the intentions and the propaganda, actions speak louder than words and have devastating effects. Hamas has fired over 650 rockets towards Israel and Israel has conducted thousands of airstrikes on the Gaza strip in order to achieve its declared goals of eliminating all Hamas leaders, militants and all their affiliations. Casualties have amounted to more than 170 deaths in Palestine (mostly civilians, over a quarter being children) and more than 1000 injuries, tens of injuries in Israel and 0 deaths…

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On the need for honesty as Gaza burns

Very wise words and needed in these troubling times….

Only a Northern Song

We have no right to dishonesty of any sort. The Israeli massacre of Palestinians is political, it is what they judge to be required to maintain the current situation of political impasse. We must avoid calling for an end to violence by both sides and instead recognize that the explicit violence of massacres is part of an order of violence that maintains occupation, siege, colonization and dispossession. The violence that needs to end is not only the air strikes, but the settlements, the occupation, and the exclusion of refugees from their homeland.

 It is deeply misleading to characterize what’s happening in Palestine as a “cycle of revenge”. Israel occupies Palestinian land, and prevents refugees from returning to their homes, and this is maintained by a state of war which has lasted since the creation of the state. From the perspective of refugees, and people living under occupation, every day is…

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The War-torn Child

I will tell God everything
The sharp metal pieces
Taken out of my stomach
Will come with me..

I will tell God everything
The men with the guns
And the aeroplanes of fire
Will all get in trouble

I will tell God everything
And ask if the lightening in the sky
Was Him taking photos
If not, I’ll give him my drawings

I will tell God everything
That mama’s face was gone
But I found Baba’s feet
And put them together like shoes

©Hafsah Aneela Bashir