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II Poetry Contest: Poems from India

Sewa is an organization that provides education for girls in Gujarati, India. These poems were written by Sewa’s students.

I Poem: Our Country

In the ocean of these relations

There’s one relation that is unique, that which I love…

Which I repeatedly recall day and night

Where the sand of sand dunes of desert
Fly around to make new sand dunes

The smell of that sand
Is what I can still feel today
As soon the rain drops pour down, it gets soaked up

Completely, in that ocean of sand
There’s is one relationship that is unique, that which I love…

I remember the crowdedness of those streets
Carts, scooters, auto rickshaws and those buses
Somewhere there were cows and at other places, the goats
They would swing and walk
Somewhere you would hear the noise of sacks filled with vegetables

They were the light of those streets
Were the sign of the population
Where we dreamt when asleep and awake
Of fairies and prince

Where there was humanity and honesty

There is pride

There was pride in one’s own earnings

Where there was glory of virtues
Where there was light because of festivals

This is my country and I am its

This is my country and I am its

This bond is unbreakable, this wouldn’t change

This relation that is the most unique
Which I love the most

 


II Poem: Where women are independent

There is every moment of happiness

Is being raised our princess

But why is she scared today
Even though it isn’t her fault, yet she is embarrassed

Why sons don’t undergo such stringency

We have raised our voice today
This fight is for equality
This is unfair

No one should stop us, no one should accost us

This is the fight for our existence
But who has begun this fire of inequality
Even though the fault is not of oneself

She is yet embarrassed today
Where even the mother is scared for her
But
There today
The daughters have raised their voice
Why are today the restrictions enforced only on us

Why sons don’t have have to face such harshness
This is unfair
This fight is for equality
This is the fight for our existence
No one should stop us, no one should accost us
I have reached that height today
Where there is an honest earning
It is a fight for our justice
The strength of my sisters lay in the wings
March forward, march forward
In this there lies the betterment of the family There is height in the society

There is height in the society
There’s independence today
In our homes
In our country and in family
No one should stop us, no one should accost us

The one who distributed all her rights of living Neither in bread nor in clothes
Either in education nor in illness
Neither was she remembered in wealth

We all are her debtors


III Poem: Invaluable diamond

The one who gave up life even before birth
Is there anyone who is responsible for it
Whom god had created to be magnanimous since birth

The one who distributed all her rights of living

Neither in bread nor in clothes

Either in education nor in illness

Neither was she remembered in wealth

We all are her debtors

The childhood passed and so did youth, the aged eyes saw darkness

Yet on one from us took up responsibility of this
Today, that daughter only, is the music of our lives
The one who has brightened the lives of her family

Became independent and made discoveries

Has opened the doors to her own destiny
Sisters have become partners of each other
Have taken care of all the burdens of life
After toiling and struggling she has become understanding

Let us all accept today
That only she is our sparking invaluable diamond


 

IV Poem: There was brightness on all four sides of Chamanpur’s crossroads…

Will the moon’s brightness remain caged in the four wall only

on the face was the stole, and chameli in the hair, and in the middle were the stove and grinder

this was no one but kamla’s  free-spiritedness
she came to me with glitter and sparkle

hopping and jumping she came to me

take me to the academy one day,
I shall wait for you and that chance, When that day arrived,

When that day arrived,

There entailed series of questions such as what is it? Why is it? Sometimes on telephone and sometimes on phone Sometimes on camera and sometimes on monitor

Sometimes on telephone and sometimes on phone Sometimes on camera and sometimes on monitor

Sometimes on camera and sometimes on monitor
Posed many questions

She blushed seeing herself smiling on the T.V.
She waited a moment and then erupted such a flame

On the face of chamanpur’s fire, rested some silence

Can this computer, phone and camera

Not be in the hands of mine

I do not wish to make cigars and sell vegetables

Give these weapons to me also once
Then you see my beauty and fairness
How do I use my thoughts for outsiders

In that there will be matters pertaining my sisters and sometimes that of my dreams too
I will jot down sometimes the violence shown to my sisters

Someday it will become weapons of my livelihood

This incident occurred seven years back

The fire of chamnapur
Our free spirited and our dream’s beauty

Today, she has kindled the fire of passion and enthusiasm In thousands, has the battalion of girls become ready.


V Poem: We want neither poverty not inequality

We shall break this wall
Which separates us from each other
This is a cry for peace, we shall break this wall of differentiation

That which brings inequality in earnings, which brings shortfalls in employment
In the helplessness of hunger, in the illness of children
We fight each day in this epidemic

This nothingness in our identity
Have lost our land and our roofs
Today it is the relationship that has rocked it In this fight of creed and caste,
Let us break this wall of inequality

This is a cry for peace
Do you think that the battle has calmed down
Have the weapons been let down
No o siste , e ha e ’t hea d the all of pea e
When the peace shall prevail, there will be earning in villages and streets, our lands shall also become fertile
Beauty shall not be an unknown
Men and women shall become equal. The country shall awaken There resounds a cry for peace in every household

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II Poetry Contest: Chutki the smartest

by Vaishnavi Sai

Chutki the smartest

Granny sang all the way

Chutki the bravest

Chutki the bravest

Daddy was always right

She kept dancing in her yellow skirt

She played a lot, till the ribbons left her braid

Chutki liked ice candy

lemon,mango, orange, and rose

He got her all four of them

Uncle Joe, Uncle Joe

Sweetest man, sweetest man

He showed her his magic tricks

He played all the sshhhh!!! games

Games which were new to her

Games which were no fun to her

Chutki knew that granny lied,

She wasn’t the smartest

And dada was wrong

She wasn’t the bravest

At 15, she cut the princess cake and wished for a knight

He didn’t have a white horse nor a castle made of glass
All she wanted was a heart of gold
His one was rather cold
Fairytale gone wrong
Chutki wasn’t the smartest

Chutki wasn’t the bravest

At 25, her parents liked him
Arranged marriage comes at a price

They got him a car, which her dad never had

They got him a house, just like the one she drew

Granny said that he was the smartest

Dad said that he was the bravest

Granny didn’t lie
Dada wasn’t wrong

As he was smart with the abuses ,

And brave with the leather belt

He ordered for a cute xy

But all he gave her was an x

She knew that her baby girl would never be the smartest

The baby girl would never be the bravest

As the saree tightened around the ceiling fan

Two heartbeats ceased at once

Chutki wasn’t the smartest

Chutki wasn’t the bravest

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II Poetry Contest: As I write this, I think about all the incidents where I blamed someone…

By Vaishnavi Sai

As I write this, I think about all the incidents where I blamed someone
It was my fault
All my fault

The day the motor cycle guy spanked me
It was my fault
I was walking on the FOOTPATH
That time when the cab driver adjusted his rear view mirror
It was my fault
I have a FACE
That time when he kept falling on me intentionally
It was my fault
I boarded a public transport BUS
That time when a professor sent me an obscene message
It was my fault
I carried a PHONE
That time when an old man masturbated outside the girl’s school
It was our fault
We were wearing UNIFORMS
That time, when a 60 year old man raped a 7 year old girl
It was her fault
She wore a cute short pink FROCK
That time when my drunk, abusive husband got on me
Ssshhhh!!!! I forgot!!!
Marital rape DOESN’T exist
Sorry, my fault
I wish I belonged to the era
When VIRGIN mother Mary gave birth and the world rejoiced
All these new rules in the name of religion
Even God must be laughing at us

That time when I went for the new year bash
It was my fault
I wanted to CELEBRATE
I wish they didn’t issue passes for women
I wish the new day didn’t start at 12:00 am -the hour at which I am not supposed to be on the roads
How can I argue with men when some from my gender also tell me it’s my fault
Feminism, hahahhaha
Equality ?
How can I call it equal?
When a group of men tried to grope me
I tried
I tried
I used my nails, my bag, my teeth and my heels
I failed
Like always
It was my fault
That I was born a woman
The way you like to call me
A shameless one

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II Poetry Contest: The Fictitious Crush

by Rahmat Idiaro D.

A cool, serene and well fragranced arena appealing to her poor innocent soul
It breezes of coolness and flourishment melts the stony heart
She looked up to the smiling moon and she smiled back
Behold was the charming appariton of a cool gentleman of mensch with a smiley and handsome personality
He walked slowly and directly to the green planty arena with a natural spray and several snap of shots after a beauteous butterfly chase.
A thousand thoughts intruded her ornamented mind
“what a nature lover!” Her soul uttered
She looked up abruptly and found him dancing in sequence to a popular soul music
“what a romantic movement!” Her soul uttered
He retired to a wooden bench and dispersed several handfuls of grain to the doves who bubbly gobbled it
“what a kind and generous personality he revealed!” Her soul uttered
He carried the natural spray and towards her direction he comes
“He must have sighted me!” Her soul uttered happily
She closed her eyes and stood up impatiently with her hands ready to procure the spray
She opened her eyes only to percept the invisible movement
“Where could he have been?!” Her soul uttered deeply
She looked forward to the wooden bench and realized she was in an imaginary world.

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II Poetry Contest: Our hearts are wracked…

by Adrienne,

Our hearts are wracked
With sobs of pain
Our tears do overflow.

Our souls are numb
With disbelief
By turmoil plunged too low.

Is this the end
Of hopes, of dreams?
“Is this the end?” we cry.

Two choices lie
Ahead of us–
To either run or rise.

We will not run
“For that is fear”
Our inner being cries.

So we’ll be brave
And join our hands
For only then we’ll rise.

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II Poetry Contest: She Fought

by Anuj Abraham

She has suffered.
She has endured a lot.
She has seen the worst.
She has been a failure, a lost cause.
She suffered in silence.
She hoped.
She was caged.
She was humiliated.
She was tortured, mentally.
Disrobed of her peace but
She fought.
She survived.
She was cheated.
She was destroyed.
But she fought.
Wounds were not her weakness,
It became her strength.
Pain became her ally.
Scars reminded her of her grit & determination.
She didn’t just survive, she lived.
She is not just a fighter.
She is a warrior.
She is now fearless.
She is strong.
She is mighty.
She is you!

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II Poetry Contest: One day…She WOKE up…

by Annie

One day…She WOKE up. She REALIZED….that the environment in which her generation existed was fictitious. She embarked on a journey… She OBSERVED, EVALUATED, and learned to APPRECIATE LIFE! She got in touch with her spirit, and recognized this as her identity. She removed the value from her body and placed it on her heart. She trusted her mind and her soul. She made mistakes and some bad choices, but accepted these along with her flaws and gracefully moved on. She reclaimed her innocence; yet continued to grow as a woman. She bathed in knowledge. She believed in love
& paid no mind to opposing parties.
She DECIDED NOT TO SURVIVE…
She CHOSE TO LIVE!

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II Poetry Contest: Daughter listen to me

by @theframedsky

Daughter listen to me
you who may never be
for I fear for the future
the future we are trying to shape
slowly but with haste we are pushing
for you to never have to fear
never have to question your feelings
Daughter trust me I’ll keep pushing
to be a better person
so I wont be but an obstacle
for those striving to change the minds
the archaic few who keep us
from ever meeting
Daughter believe me the world
isn’t always going to be just
but maybe one day we can make it yours
I can see you now in the brightest spot of my being standing on your own two feet unquestioned for your abilities are the proof
strong as the woman I knew you could become

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II Poetry Contest: The Enigmatic Woman

by Self

You know,
The woman.
Of fancy curves,
Riding you to wild fantasies,
You know.

But do you know?
The enigmatic woman,
Who doesn’t hails matriarchy but only absolute equalism.
A diligent woman of dignity.

The enigmatic woman,
Who can march you to victory,
Came from a hidden legacy of warriors through history.

The enigmatic woman,
Who is ever unhindered through ages,
By periodical atrocities.

The enigmatic woman,
Who never learned to surrender,
To the chaos between pen and spice.

The enigmatic woman,
An impeccable benevolent woman,
A crack of dawn she is.

Sadly! You won’t find her on demand,
Because she ain’t gaudy.
A lifesome soul,
Of beauty and sanctity.

Found only then,
When not seen,
Through ‘His’ eyes.

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II Poetry Contest: Dress appropriately?

by treepokok

I dress according to the weather,
what’s the matter?
She hikes her skirt up
a little short,
what’s on that little mind of yours
nothing but dirty thoughts?
Control yourself
not her clothing.
Avert your eyes,
what are you thinking?
She is wrapped in cloth from head to toe,
oh now she’s mysterious,
and your head is still spinning.
You need perhaps
a little more respect
to chase away the lust
that’s eating up your head.

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II Poetry Contest: Father’s Bride

by infinite thought diaries

The bright sun was like a dark night,
Any ray of hope was out of his sight,
Doing wrong was a daily thing,
Missing his happiness the lonely king,
But thn she came with a new life,
His heart’s queen his forever wife,
Though just in dreams but yet so near,
And only dreams was the place when he had no fear,
Though now she had gone far away to come again,
Leaving him behind to face all the pain,
But he had to live for the princess she left behind,
To Teach her life lessons and strength of being kind,
She grew up as loving as the queen,
Had ferociousness of the young king,
She was the replica of the old queen,
Old King’s success was to be seen,
She fought hard for the father’s pride,
For his lost confidence and his kingdom in wide,
Where discussion of daughter being Superior gets people to divide,
The old king was proud of her daughter’s stride.

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II Poetry Contest: Whole

by Susan Llewelyn

For a long time I couldn’t go there
look at that gapping hole
instead I smoked it, drank it,
ate it whole and wore it out
trying everything but actually seeing
the Grand Canyon in my soul
Forged by the eternal mystery of time
a travelling caravan of well worn
loves and hurts, I turned away
so many times, until eventually life
won’t let anything be ignored, least of all
you
I wish someone had told me
all those years ago that to fill the void
I just had to look into the mirror
and say you’re pretty damn fine
a good person, over and over, repetition
reinvented the soundtrack of my life
until one day l had a new jam
on permanent rewind. Hole?
Well that’s just a construct
of an unreliable narrator
I am as I’ve always been
brilliant, priceless
whole

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II Poetry Contest: No one really cares if you smile or you cry

by…

No one really cares if you smile or you cry
Life goes on if you’re alive or you die
This is a world of real people living a lie
Too busy faking smiles I wish I knew why
And then came a day when I learnt to say ‘No’
I listened to my heart and not what they told
I fought back those demons all in a row
I felt like a queen. I felt young, free and bold
It felt a little awkward as all of this was new
Being ‘Me’ and not ‘Perfect’ was too good to be true
But somewhere deep down I guess I always knew
Nothing can ever be more beautiful than the ‘real you’

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Poetry Contest: The Unsilencing

by Katie Hogan

Part I
In the foggy torrent of Hurricane Floyd,
I am born with curiosity that tumbles behind blue eyes.
I terrify my parents with my own thunder.

Part II
I am too young to remember when
I first learn that I am better seen and not heard.

Part III
I am hollow and illicit,
Salt stains my cheeks.
I crack the backbone of Vogue covers and diet pills,
Suck the marrow of silent torture,
Learn the secrets of shrinking.
Barbie was an instruction manual before she was an invitation.
There is nothing colloquial about this kind of crumbling.

Part IV
I pray to skeletons before I close my eyes,
Skip the litany of alarm setting and teeth brushing,
Trade in the thrum of thick precocity and pleat my periphery into an improper fraction.
I am less than unity and I cannot be creased into even sections.
I sever the space between being heard and being seen,
Shove myself into the margin.

Part V
It was never about smallness,
It was about shrinking the guilt–
Sacrificing the space I never had a right to.
I learned I was better seen and not heard,
And then I hid behind my silence.

Part VI
I calculate the damage of my downfall,
And I do not care.
I cleave myself from emotion,
Cling to apathy,
And curl up behind my collarbone.
It easier here.

Part VII
I cannot decide if I want to die.
I would rather live in the empty of indecisiveness,
But they tell me that without fuel, expiration is inevitable.
Apparently you cannot evaporate the ocean without dehydrating the entire planet.
This all started because I could not stand to be seen and not heard.
I do not like being told what to do.
This life is my mess.
I dictate the destruction.

Part IX
I am the weapon and the antidote.
I learn the etymology of my inexorable deprivation,
Find antonyms for divestiture,
Translate pain into purpose.
I peel my voice from passivity,
And plaster it to the paper.
I shout so loudly my pen punches holes between my words.
I keep writing when the ink dries.

Part X
I am far more untamed than I remember,
Half silk and half smoke,
No longer the abused, nor the abuser.
I am the elegy of my smaller self.
I find myself in places I did not exist before.

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II Poetry Contest: The written Parchment is a pensive Message based on a (Woman life)

by Chirayuwriter

Pic 1. (past memories)
“caption ”
“Sadness wracked on her face
When a voice whisper on her ear’s
the memories revealed again to the time when there was no one behind, The passage Is based on her somber life, When she was born, how her family left her alone in the cage house of the orphanage, She deliberates her past without the love of family and surviving with the question why you have left me alone to fight against the world?.
The answer framed in a parchment voice lived by her own experience where she finds about the word “woman” is questioning word for the world,

Parchment lines:
Baby girl born & burned Girl Walk & Suck
Woman flies & wing’s cut.
Isn’t a reason why I’ve been waiting to suffer from such an awful to the woeful activities happens in my life, Does a girl is born for the purpose of use and throw slogan, what a universe is made for us who are living in the place of heaven.

“Proceed with Caution”.
One day afternoon while coming from a friend’s house, I Met three crook boy’s who were drunk, commanded on my clothes and on my body, it was on a Crowdy path and near the street there was a cop checkpoint sitting in the chair eating and gossiping, many peoples were traveling in the street and I was standing after being commanded by the three boys my mind thought to leave away the place or to sit at home like a fearful girl like mainly every other girl’s go through with it and my second opinion heat in mind was to give them a slap, but after giving them slap, they won’t be able to understand how I feel or a girl feel when they been abuse or treat like a puppet, will they respect me or any other women, there action can be more harsh to me they can harm me like everyday, every min, every second there is a woman who is going through with such a situations harassment or molesting, some stay at that place to give away an action as a fighting spirit or some give up everything like a trapped victim so my mind was staying at that place, then suddenly I got to come to their point, they assumption to me, I called them near to me and I asked what is your problem? Haven’t you seen someone like me who wear a short shirt and a short skirt does you find something interesting in that? Do you think we women’s are a remote control button so anyone can press it or operate at any time? Do you want to see my body right?.
Do a thing I am sitting in between to this street you can remove all my clothes and do what you like to do, all I am yours? then after you are being enjoyed everything  with me then pass away to someone else who are born as a human, but then act like you (an Evil Mind), you know for me you are a Criminal how just look at your mind and say some something about yourself, you don’t have the answers right?.
You know some criminals are guilty and some are free flying because the power of politics to the colour of money is standing with them and they shows a life of women as a standing toy of the sleeping pillow, You three are drunken and you look like you have done something wrong before, so do you want to hide your mistake or you want to repeat it again? To admit your mistake in front of the people’s on the social media right? or to get arrested for your crime in front of the cop I’m looking into your mind now you’re standing being very guilt at present so don’t you think its right time to admit all the mistake you did in life, because your intention can change at any time, so what you do you want from me now?.
Then after few minutes later they fell on my leg’s and apologize for their mistake, actually the scene is still incomplete because the crowd of the street have surrounded them, how let’s go back to place where such an incident was occurred the place in market. where the different life’s are moving away and every life has a story behind so incident to live media to people’s who are watching and in the crowed people’s there is a team of Report’s with the power of youngster help me when I start recording the live mode on a television broadcasting it’s been Live on every channel, and they there are criminal who raped many people’s by their mind.
“I have faced everything in life
Because I’m a woman, every raped is done in a day or night is an anguish spirit in mind as a sadness, humor stops the life of brilliance for the woman’s, a rope is made to use nor to make a knot on it and use it to attempt suicide..
But nor a respect and love from the people’s who are born as human in the world, I have seen many people’s who will motivate you a lot, but at the end there intention plays a game in mind and use it on a woman…
“Thinking is bug of acting”
For example take an apple..

“An apple is sweet fruit, but when you eat it, then the action relates the molesting scene on a woman the way of crime.
“He was munching the character of lady in mind,
He took a bite out and chewing the mentality of a perceptual object
He breaks away the whole body
By thinking process on where he started hunting and threaded at the beginning and at the end he peeled away everything”
-Chirayu!.

P.S (?)… The Story remains as a Question Mark because the answer is with you in your mind and action is in your hand so never please save the Girl child and fight against the crime.
Please respect Women’s.

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II Poetry Contest: “You are so pretty”

by Alea Nesbit

Is that all you have to say?
If I hear you are pretty again
I believe my guts will begin to twist and
burn and the only way to save me from this torture is to cut them and let them spill out on the floor.

I’m tired of being pretty.
Cause pretty fades.
I rather hear how my words makes your heart tremble like the waves of an earthquake, where the fault line created from the impact of a conversation transpired from my lips will leave you forever changed & never the same.
I much rather hear how my presence entering a room is a megaton of energy that can set the whole earth vibrating like a bell.

Pretty is as pretty does.
But I rather be looked at as more.
I rather much be told that my very presence has the power to inspire a whole generation of warriors.

I rather hear how my love melts rocks like the sun, that it can cause the seas to dry up but yet harmless as a dove.

I rather hear how my passion is like a burning flame. Giving you a scar you proudly proclaim.

I want to hear how my smile encompasses the light of the world. Notice how I hold heaven in my spirit.

Tell me I belong amongst the wildflowers, because I freely bloom with petals for my feet, even when the season change I will always begin again.

If the words formed from your lips are your
so pretty, I rather much hear nothing at all.
Cause silence speaks louder then words sometimes.

Beauty is in the eyes of the beholder and we all are more then just a pretty face

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II Poetry Contest: I love how she smiles, suppressing the hurt within.

by sprinkled_with_sass

I love how she kisses everyone else’s scars when she herself is bleeding.
I love how she flips her hair in confidence knowing she ‘got it’.
I love how she sees no limit to her abilities.
I love how she winks at any challenge bestowed upon her.
And without the might of a man she paints a life for herself to be proud about.
I see ‘her’ in each woman. Some of them still discovering, some valuing and some sadly demeaning.

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II Poetry Contest: For you, yes.. you.

by participant of School Poetry Competition in Bali

I don’t know how to start it, hmm..you know I have such a big big ego for saying something about you. You know, I always be (and will be always) complaining about your attitude, the way you treat, how I say that you can’t be romantic, cute, charming..rare to say adorable words..and…plain. But, somehow, I always miss you, you are always there..beside me, keep me safe, try to make me happy, give your anger just because you care. I’ve never got that from the others. You just do it. Never been busy about words. When I’m in difficult time, you are in front line, helping me. Can you just stay here until the rest of my life, hun?

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II Poetry Contest: Lady

To all the girls who prove that they are no less than men.

Don’t consider her weak
As she can shake the world under your feet..

She is a sister, she is a wife
She is the one who has given you life…

You insult her and call her by names
Trying to put her character in blame…

Don’t consider her powerless as she is quite
Coz when the time comes she can also fight..

And if breaks the limit of her tolerance
She will give answers to every violence..

Her shyness is her weakness is just a myth
coz if she turns into Kaali she can tear up your ribs…

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LGBT Pride Month

by Vanessa Daniela

Earth will be a better place once we treat everyone with respect. We support the LGBT community and stand against any kind of discrimination.

Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Pride Month (LGBT Pride Month) is currently celebrated in June to honor the 1969 Stonewall riots in Manhattan. The riots were the mark of the Gay Liberation Movement in the United States.

Screen Shot 2017-06-08 at 5.39.42 PM

Nowadays, the celebrations attract millions of people from different ages around the World. The goal of the commemorative month is to recognize the impact that this community have had in history worldwide.

However, according to the FBI, the LGBT people are the most likely targets of hate crimes in America.  L.G.B.T. people are twice as likely to be targeted as African-Americans. It is time to change this scenario. We are all humans, and we all deserve respect. Don’t let your faith and/or culture violate the most sacred words: respect, peace, and love.

Source

@newyorktimesmagazine

@secretlyprettygay

@librarycongress

 

 

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II Poetry Contest: To the boy who sent me two messages, the first one saying, “It’s not my problem” and the second, “survival of the fittest.” In response to being asked about helping refugees.

By magicaldisco

Tell me how “fit” you really are.
Is it because you were able to strike a man in the head who held a sign that said, “People are refugees too?” while having people cheer you on, praise you, call you a savage, and saying you are ‘a real man.’

Or what about the time when the word started getting around and our football coach suspended you only for 5 games as a punishment and you bawled your eyes out?

Does it make you more fit that you were randomly born into a wealthy family? Is this what ‘survival of the fittest’ means to you? Is this why it’s ‘not your problem’ that a little girl is holding her deceased newborn brother in her arms drenched in blood? Why does green paper separate you from her?

Boy who has only ever known of trophies, if you are so pro-life and a worshipper of jesus, tell me, where did your compassion go? Was it left behind when you started to feel like something was pricking at the frailness of your masculinity? Did you feel the poking of a child crying for help, who you deem ‘not your problem’ when you were marching around with your other guy friends shouting, ‘Stop killing human beings!’ And by the way, Boy, who the fuck are you to tell me what I can do with my body?

I’m afraid that you reveal yourself a hypocrite and a coward.

Now, that is your problem; a problem that the rest of us have to deal with.

To the 5-year-old girls, who are continuously having the world root against them, as their schools burn down, and their houses blow up; you are not a problem, you are a solution to this world of people who lack compassion.

I’m sorry that this white American Boy believes you do not deserve a chance just because of where you are come from.

I see a photo of you smiling, as the buildings behind you collapse and cripple at the hands of nuisance.

You are my faith in humanity.

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Malala: Motivational Life Story

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by Vanessa Daniela
I was reading the book, “I am Malala,” last month. I was motivated to describe how I felt reading her book. It was an inspirational and profound life lesson for me; I believe it would be for many others. I do regret not reading it before now. Malala is an energetic and motivated woman. Her willingness to educate girls and boys around the World is Magnifique.

In the book, she describes her life in Valley of Swat in Pakistani and then in Birmingham, England. Malala’s father was a school teacher; she was considered lucky in her town for having such understanding and supportive father.

When I have gone thru difficult moments in my life, especially traumas that affected my learning abilities within different periods of my life, I was very distracted by things that were not adding to my education.

Fortunately, I did graduate from college, and I also acquired a master’s degree. However, I do feel that I am still catching up on subjects that I haven’t learned in the past. I deeply regret not reading more or learn everything that I could once I had the opportunity to do so and had fewer domestic and career responsibilities.

During the period of my life when I had fewer constraints on my time, I wish somebody like Malala would have shown me that far worse things can happen to us. However, that our motivation can take us anywhere and everywhere our dreams might lead us.

Nowadays, I have been watching documentaries, reading about war, paying attention to terrorism activities, and evaluating the need for more gender equality. I feel overwhelmed because there is so much violence degrading our World; it is hard to find the motivation I feel that I should have to fight human rights. However, I know in my heart that we cannot give up. Reading the book, “I am Malala,” was another reminder of that fact. We have to use our strengths to bring peace and equality to the World.

Let’s be brave like Malala! Do not let fear stop us from making our Earth a better place.

Malala’s Speech to UN Youth Takeover

Source: Their World

…The terrorists thought that they would change our aims and stop our ambitions but nothing changed in my life except this: Weakness, fear and hopelessness died. Strength, power and courage was born.  I am the same Malala. My ambitions are the same. My hopes are the same. My dreams are the same.

Dear sisters and brothers, I am not against anyone. Neither am I here to speak in terms of personal revenge against the Taliban or any other terrorists group. I am here to speak up for the right of education of every child. I want education for the sons and the daughters of all the extremists especially the Taliban…

Honourable Secretary General, peace is necessary for education. In many parts of the world especially Pakistan and Afghanistan; terrorism, wars and conflicts stop children to go to their schools. We are really tired of these wars. Women and children are suffering in many parts of the world in many ways. In India, innocent and poor children are victims of child labour. Many schools have been destroyed in Nigeria. People in Afghanistan have been affected by the hurdles of extremism for decades. Young girls have to do domestic child labour and are forced to get married at early age. Poverty, ignorance, injustice, racism and the deprivation of basic rights are the main problems faced by both men and women…

…Dear brothers and sisters, we want schools and education for every child’s bright future. We will continue our journey to our destination of peace and education for everyone. No one can stop us. We will speak for our rights and we will bring change through our voice. We must believe in the power and the strength of our words. Our words can change the world…

…So let us wage a global struggle against illiteracy, poverty and terrorism and let us pick up our books and pens. They are our most powerful weapons.

One child, one teacher, one pen and one book can change the world. 

Education is the only solution. Education First.

Image Source: Financial Times

 

 

 

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II Poetry Contest: March 8th – International Women’s Day

by D. Avery

Some women
Some women had their last treatment today
Some their first
Some were untreated.

Some had heart attacks, some died
Some lived.
Some women felt dead inside
Others felt vibrant and alive.

Baby girls were born today
borne of women become mothers
While others became aunts, mentors, friends.
Today, and yesterday, and tomorrow.
Some will feel joy, some will feel sorrow.

Some women were betrayed today
Some endured violence and pain
Fell down, got pushed around
Got up, tried again.

Women endured today.
Some were supported, some were supportive
Some felt hate, some were hated.
Some gave love, some were loved.

Around the world, women endure
Some fall ill, some rise cured
Some are able to feel the hope and the good
Of a worldwide sisterhood.

 

 

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II Poetry Contest: If you’d have taken the time…

by _bmgalloway

(Part 1)
If you’d have taken the time
to read the small print
in her eyes,
you would have known that
your hardware was not
compatible with her system.
Instead, you tried to make
it compatible and now
her system is broken,
her files corrupt.

(Part 2)
I have watched her almost
destroy her system in an
attempt to destroy the damage
that your hack caused.
She is not a machine,
she is a Woman.
One day her strength
will overwrite every file
that you corrupted.
Until then, she will increase
the font size of her small print
and scream every word
at the top of her voice.
She does not have to be polite.
She does not have to whisper.
She does not have to let you
log in whenever you wish.
She is not a machine,
she is a Woman.

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National Children’s Awareness Month

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Image: Festival of Children Foundation

by Mariana Laviaguerre

Not all children have the wonderful childhood we all hope to provide for our own children. Many children live in fear and neglect, and each year, approximately 3.3 million children experience some form of domestic violence. Therefore, June has been established as the National Children’s Awareness Month to increase awareness about the vulnerability of children exposed to violence.
..
Domestic violence is the single most important forerunner to child abuse and 30 to 60 percent of perpetrators of partner abuse also abuse the children in the household. Child abuse may occur at any time between infancy and adolescence, and for every hour, as many as 115 children are abused.
..
Children who witness violent and abusive behavior in the home are the most likely individuals to become perpetrators of domestic violence in the future. Men who are exposed to domestic violence in childhood are twice as likely to abuse their own partner and children, while women experiencing abuse in childhood are more likely to become victims of domestic violence in the future.

 

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II Poetry Contest: Commodity

by Medha Khair

She was just a commodity .
She brought life into this world yet she was something that could be traded .
Her happiness , her views , her opinions were irrelevant .
Why ? You ask .
Well just because she had a vagina instead of a dick .
She was a slave .
She was only important when he wanted something , be it a glass of water or a child .
She was taught to adjust to his needs , to look after his happiness .
What of her own , well they weren’t important you see .
They say these things don’t happen no more .
Yet I watch it happen over and over again like someone hit the replay button way too many times .

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II Poetry Contest: Thinking of a voice all through an insomniac night

by @pragyaspenchant

Thinking of a voice all through an insomniac night,
Or living a moment, which makes entire arena bright;
Melody the soul sings,
Or music to which heart clings;
Expression of words extraordinaire,
Or sentences that express a desire;
Silent eyes, that tell stories,
Or depth of heart that cherishes memories;
Someone, whose name makes you smile,
Or someone, who has made your existence fragile;
Something from which we always try to escape,
Or the dreaded mistake all make;
Something that’s enough with silence,
Or someone who’s worth a response;
When millions of such questions club,
Maybe, that’s what we call love?

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II Poetry Contest: Leave her be

by L.L. Lynch

There is a wild flower in a field
And in the breeze she called to me
So strong and tall up to my knees
But all alone amongst the weeds.

Her buds, they bloom like butterflies
From tight cocoons towards the skies
Each one, a different lullaby
That she has sung into the night.

Standing lonely in the shade
Afraid one day you pass her way
And foolishly think she needs to be saved
Plucking her wild roots all up and away.

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II Poetry Contest: Once

by  L.L. Lynch

I was free once-
Back when we were making memories we didn’t know were memories.
Back when my hair was long and wild, just like our summer nights and my dreamy life.
Driving around in the dark with the windows down, looking for sprinklers to jump through until we were soaking wet and our t-shirts were as transparent as my eyes for you, the day we met.
We’d finally drive home and run from one apartment to the next; out the hall and down the steps; walking in unannounced because, that’s what real friends do.
The movie nights with all the oldies who sometimes brought the someone new
With charming smiles and an instant connection; soaking wet and transparent, from that very, very first moment. I was free once. Dancing in our pretend rain; playing out our pretend family game; and in my lucid dreams I choose to go back there again and again.

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II Poetry Contest: The Blue, The Moon, The Stars & I

by L.L. Lynch

The blue, the moon, the stars and I
All in the dark we do reside
Our faces bright as mountain sides
Whose flesh is clothed like virgin brides.

Constant as the tides we are
Both high and low and near and far
Deceptively strong yet weak and starved
Like ballerinas at the barre

We exist for you both more and less
Until you lose all interest
And then you’ll watch with baited breath

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II Poetry Contest: Nirbhaya

by To every girl who has faced physical and sexual violence like rapes

Do you remember
that night of December
when I shouted and cried in pain
but all my efforts went in vain…
You molested me and played me like a toy
and did all this just for your joy….
Didn’t the rakhis on your wrists remind…
That you had sisters at home and still you were so unkind…
In order to prove how manly you were
you have put a spot of shame on the face of every individual….
Was being a girl was the fault I did?
That in the moving bus I was assaulted…
And that act was such a shame
that it defamed every man’s name…
And now every girl questions her security needs
As in the faces of humans there are so many beasts….

Featured

II Poetry Contest: I am a human

by Chirayuwriter

Not you are killer madam who kills you daily From an “Evil minded to the Scornful Brain” more over harsh through physical action on a body to the Mentally visual trauma which smears a beautiful skin,
I’m a human from a humane world not from so called “nauseating mankind.
Who forget before restricting or belittling a thing in a life or ruling on it because it’s not only a child, girl, woman, but a life where everyone suffers one day in a context to understand the concept is ”
say no” it’s enough to say no to the things which are wrong as you are facing in your life or from mindless peoples, especially a prick touches you from your love one’s “say no”
to the things which are out of your control,
no more “racism”,
no more “sacrifice”,
no more “tears”,
no more ” Compromise ”
no more “depression” and
say no to “insomniac” as
well those torment
which are life long given by someone to you or anything which is an incommunicable disease makes you a patient of over thinking.
“Say no” to “Don’t stare at me”.

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II Poetry Contest: My Mom

by Arshiya Hussain

You made me into who I am from who I was,
Without demanding for any applause.
Sacrificing your own comfort and luxury,
You stood beside me during my every injury.
Alone you struggled for even my smallest happiness,
I wonder how should I thank you YOUR HIGHNESS.

You took my care with such grace and pride,
I really feel blessed to be your child.
You’ve been my shelter in every storm,
Cared for my sickness all night long.
You’re the biggest inspiration in my life,
You did all my work and didn’t even let me hold a knife.
Doesn’t matter what I loose
You’re my most important gain,
You’re the best medicine of my every pain.
You’re my strength when I’m weak,
You become my voice when I couldn’t speak.
I promise to never leave you alone,
Proving that we’re two bodies and one soul.

And when the angel of death will arrive,
I’ll book my ticket along you giving her a little bribe.
I can’t imagine my world without you,
Then I’d become a mystery without any clue,
Because incomplete to each other
You’re my sun and I’m your moon.

You’re the most beautiful woman I’ve ever come across,
And if we have a bet with God
I want to win you in my every toss.
I pray destiny wouldn’t ever do us apart,
‘Cuz mommy you’re my world
And you will always be in my heart.

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II Poetry Contest: Woman

by Vinita Agrawal

Like a plastic palmyra showcased at the front door
A rag doll – gloved, thumb-printed, buttressed
bruised, soughed, oboe-d
and at the end of it all – grey like the ash of a rose.

Rabbit-like. Fearful, frightened.
Babbling, burbling, dripping
scurrying, stumbling, succumbing
until reduced to a sobbing choir of broken hummingbirds.

She is his color-card for abuse
one shade for every kind;
to rape, demean, curb, thrash, burn, mutilate, violate, intimidate,
a fertile ground for the plough of his madness.

She is no one. She is nothing.
She is dry yellow grass, an invasive weed
sawdust, thorn, nettle.
an abandoned trellis on which he pegs his evils.

But really, she is none of these.
She is a cause to be fought for in her own voice.
Though sandpapered by scars of a thousand hard years
her resilience is still intact.

Woman – she shines in a light of her own – ever evolving
weaving a special bond with her sisterhood
no veil, no hijab, no purdah can conceal her strength
nothing can keep her down.

She is Ma Durga, Ma Kali, Ling Bhairavi
Jwala, Amba, Bhavani
the fierce rider of tigers, spewer of fire
killer of demons, drinker of blood.

She is the twin of every aspect that exists in the universe
the half of the whole called man
She is Shakti. The bearer of souls.
Because of her man exists.

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II Poetry Contest: Second Place

by Rahmat, a 300lvl student of Adult Education

I’m a woman, in pride and honour I glow
In power and motivation I flow
In love and affection I drown for the prince of my heart
A golden heart he had with a charming apparition
His display of humanity and integrity gave more hope of security to my soul.
The luckiest woman I ever thought I was
The king of my heart I got married to and in his castle of love, i lived
The beast of my heart he became after a hard hit on my face
A mistake he confessed it was
My generous heart could not hold a brief of forgiveness
In his stronghold i lived till my innocent soul survived a coma after another domestic abuse
I thought he could be forgiven after a whole lots of plead and care till I realized that I’ve been paralysed
I screamed to voice out but his threat held me back
Oh my pride, my integrity, my honour and all vanished!
My dignity wept at the present of His apparition as his threat keep warning me never to voice out
I was left with no choice to as I crave to be the woman I used to be
My voice was heard at the hospital bed and my freedom untied
And then I became the woman I used to be

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II Poetry Contest-Second Place: Sacrifice

by Paris Holmes

Utilizing OUR bodies to carry and give life.
Sometimes giving up dreams to focus on being an amazing mother or wife.
Replacing OUR last name with trust.
Sacrifice is strength which is implanted in US.
STRENGTH
The amount WE have to love repeatedly, even after abuse.
The necessary roles WE fill or even the ones WE don’t choose .
The strength WE contain to do what it takes to provide for OUR own, when force to be alone, or to survive.
Strength is consistently permanent within US.
Love gives US an undeniable drive.
LOVE
Uncontrollably seeping through OUR hearts.
Subconsciously giving a piece of OURSELVES to love as hard as WE can.
Even during moments that are unplanned.
WE are the absolute definition of essential.
Plethora of possibilities to offer in life.
Way beyond potential.
Because WE are resilient, OUR need on this earth is a must.
To show men, boys, and especially little girls what it’s like to be amazing creatures like US.

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II Poetry Contest: First place

by Jen Liz

See nothing can stop her now
She finally knows her worth
Fulfilled & heavy with self-love
she treads ever so lightly on this earth

She’s come all this way
& She refuses to stop now
She made a promise to herself
Her most powerful vow.

Because a woman’s promise is way more than just that
It’s her soul pouring words
She engraves forever on her heart like a tat

So understand this…
A strong woman cannot be shaken
For she is like the ocean
No matter what; it can’t be taken.

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II Poetry Contest: The Winners

poetrycontest Dear Participants,

I want to thank you one more time for participating in the contest. We got submissions from different parts of the World, and we are very happy for reaching women and girls in urban and rural areas of Asia, Africa, Australia, Europe, and Americas.

 

You should be proud of speaking up about your feelings, your life, and our rights. Making the society aware that every minute a woman is disrespected, violated, and abused.

 

Art is a tool for us. By expressing our traumas and thoughts into written words and/or visual arts we are translating the pain, and demanding changes.

 

I read and re-read every single poem. Some of them made me cry, others made me happy and stronger. I wish I could give everyone the first prize. Please consider yourself a winner. Congratulations to everyone!!!

I sent an e-mail to all of you explaining that was very hard to pick only one.  I made the decision to award three poems according to the judges and then finally my vote. 

I have the honor to congratulate:

First place (judges’ votes): Jen Liz “See nothing can stop her now” 

The poem will be posted tomorrow 5/15.

Second place (judges’ votes and my vote):

Paris Holmes “Sacrifice”

The poem will be posted Tuesday 5/16.

 

Rahmat, a 300lvl student of Adult Education “I’m a woman, in pride and honour I glow” 

The poem will be posted Wednesday 5/17.

Thank you for your touching words!!

Congratulations to all of you!!

Inspire for a better life!!

Love,

Vanessa Daniela

 

 

 

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A ten-year old rape victim who was denied an abortion has given birth in northern India. The 10-year old delivered a baby girl via Caesarian section at the Government Medical College and Hospital in Chandigarh, a city in North India. Both the girl and her baby are in stable condition, according to Dasari Harish, one […]

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II Poetry Contest: The Rebellious Bird

by Anuj Abraham

Rebellious, she was, the decision was made. Irrespective of the pain, she decided to walk on the blade.

Life wasn’t a bed of roses nor was it a walk on burning coals. Yet she had decided she won’t be tamed. She wanted to be free.

She was a spirit, that wandered, a bird that was set free. A cage that once defined her world was now a blurring reality.

Rebellion it was when she left the cage, but she chose to carve out her life the way she wanted.

The world rebuked her when she did the unthinkable.

But rebellion was her first step towards her dreams.