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Poems of Woman Scream 2014, Sydney Australia

Poems of Woman Scream International Poetry Festival 2014, Sydney Australia, coordinated by Saba Vasefi.








Saba Vasefi


Slap Fingerprints
Translated by Sheema Kalbasi

It is not without reason
 that I no longer miss
 Like the tea stirred in the cup
 Haze dances around my temple
flock by flock
The Pimp
 And the shameless
 Scream their pain loud
It is still I
 who expands like blood from
collarbone to
 legs
 But not
 ripened enough to be picked from
 the branch
 The more the wheel turns around
the more confused I become
 Like a reptile crawling handless and
Footless
Tell me where in this rotten hole I
should give birth to my daughter
So that the titmice paint her dress
Maroon
 With ruby grapes
 Now that in the long famine
Queues
 I swallow rationed moldy bread
Where on earth should I entrust
 Her
 lest my imprisonment arrest the
motion of the Heaven
In the long term prison of life
 Where is safe
For this out of circle baby
Who goes round and round
To find a face
Branded with slap fingerprints




Student Day

Next to crumpled green flyers
By the debris piled behind the half built house 
Does anyone know of the girl tripped in Alexandra street
And the odd shoe 
Left behind far away from my feet?

Does anyone know
Of the hand of the drunken dog who pulled my hand
And the yelling
That stayed behind in my mind and hastened my visa to run?

I was lobbed over to this edge of the globe 
Breathing comes hard again
Though there's no tear gas at work
Nor even a napkin drenched in vinegar 
Held by the hand of a friend to my mouth

I am sitting like a piece of mud stuck to the sole

Does anyone know of my black shoe
Whose pair is sitting in grief of the other
Waiting on the shelf of my room?




Elizabeth Mora

Mami Chula


Your Endless Cycle of Poetic Prose fails to Seduce me.
Your “Mami Chula” – irritates and bites me.
Tus Dulcesitos de Amor- defy me!
“No…No..” you sing into my ear -  “Quiero buscar una manera -” I want to find a way of defining YOU and OUR love without
appearing simpleminded.
Pero en la realidad tu reconociste la vanidad de la verdad!
Choking with these coated words, you sense the ego of a hungry man!
A longing to consume the thoughts that gender your life span.
The Desperate- the Desperate- the more Desperate – is he – to revert to a womb – to send your feminism into a Lazarus Tomb.
Si fueras intelligente,
No gastarias tus falsas energias, mi amor-
Porque Mujeres como yo!,
Porque Mujeres como yo!,
“Don’t waste your tongue,” I sing back,
“Women like me are of a rare kind!”
We do not melt like chocolate hearts
or act the muse to your crappy art!
We do not hurry to your arrival with a pretty haste!
We do not add flavour to your appalling taste!
Porque Mujeres como yo!
Porque Mujeres como yo!
Estamos en contra de tu influenza,
Somos Soldadas de la Resistencia!- Resistencia contra eso- eso que tu dices ser AMOR…AMOR…
AMOR..MI TERROR!
Si de Verdad me quieres, mijito
Deja de engordar mi furia con chocolate !
Y en vez,
Dame,
Dame- Dame-Dame- Dame
Nada mas
Ni nada menos
De mi querida
LIBERTAD!!!




Poem: Two

Size 14.



Size 14
My world this world is a size too big.
Size 14.
I hasten to exaggerate that my hips are wider than yours,
Curvier than yours and a point of anxiety that makes my list of flaws longer than yours.
Size 14.
It was only today that T.V informed me that ‘Curvy’ is the NEW ‘in’.
Yet how can steadfast traditions be broken by the stillness of words,
By the lazy love handles that develop on her hips as she sits and relays news that not even she believes.
Size 14.
My World this world is a size too big.
Size 14.
I am not saying that I don’t love myself by far I do. When I feel down about my exterior I only look to my inferiors Nigella, Beyoncé and Kardashian- just goes to show imperfection can be dashing!
I am only concerned because this world demands me to be- if it were for me I would not want to be.
But such is the audacious nature of this world to demand we eat and consume thoughts and ideas that can be better served!
Size 14.
In looking to you, all I get are false negations of my dire fat reality- you say that with a quick diet my round-about can be left out and about- but I know better so do you do – that these things are but fads undue untrue!
There are but a mini-version of your bible- Jenny Craig- If I can do it so you can you,
I WANT to lose weight how about you!
Size 14.
This world is a size too big for my alternate visions of what I should be!
Distinctions and refinements in thoughts have availed me nothing.
For in searching to be pretty you look to be stupid and not bored,
Disinterested and rather than interesting,
Mysterious rather than a mystery.
So that your extreme diets are left to be the depth and surface of your being, the figurine of what makes you a beautiful being! 
Size 14.
Do I remain the rubenesque acquaintance of intelligence or become the bimbo that prefers sexual negligence??
In trying to reach a compromise,
This world perplexes and divides me, biting into the conscious
Defiance against superficial beauty.
As I place a friand in my mouth and write these words now clouded with fluffy flavoured crumbs,
A considerable looking waiter winks at me and stares into my chocolate coloured eyes…
  Oh..Soooo convincingly:
He is not abated by the fat that rims my thighs but rather debating the fleshy tunnels they happily align:
In my bouts of doubt did I forget to foresee that my weight is but one- among many- of my feminine tyrannies.




Michele  Seminara


Contagion


So now, after all your raging
you are
sweet again
meek again
wanting to reconcile
again
and I
am invaded
by your anger’s oily grey shadow,
which spread across the vast expanse of bed last night
and, ascending my carefully constructed
cold shoulder
seeped into my heart,
where it rose like Judas’s gall
in the festy heat of my hurt,
cloning itself a dark likeness…
So that I upon waking
felt uneasy inside,
and opening my cavernous, unconscious mouth
spat the poison like spit-fire
into the wide waiting eyes of our child
(oh my child!)
who could not absorb it
but spewed it back in a torrent
of hot tears and indignation,
and then skirted me
warily,
with surprised looking eyes,
sensing that something that would harm it
had inhabited its mother
All day I struggled to reconcile
the purport of my love with its lack,
all day I wrestled treachery
to regain my kind self back,
and all day I failed
until finally,
the anger grew weary of its winning game
and I,
spent
cowed
vacated
lowered my head in shame
and, asking forgiveness for hosting that
which I was not strong enough to contain,
was through the grace of imperfection
and a child’s perfect, unearned love
absolved.




* “Contagion” was first published in The Blue Hour Magazine, 2013




Abandon


Strange
what happens
when you hear the news
and find yourself gazing
in underwater slow motion
at all that up to this point
was your life.
The verandah you spent the day
inexplicably painting green,
the doll's house
carefully constructed
in the childhood room,
the vase placed
just so
to welcome him home,
the treacherous photographs
lining the fairytale hall
all
roll gently
in waves
and send ripples out into the future
so that it instantly
rearranges itself,
and what was to be
is now not.

Still. So still.
Clear. Cruel. Dazzling.
All pierced by a
screaming voice (mine I think)
a crying child (ours).
She's tugging my leg trying
desperately to pull me
back
through the doorway
of her already fractured
childhood before it snaps shut.
(Oh sweetheart I wish,
if only for you,
that I could rewind
and keep playing my part,
but it's gone you see,
there's nothing left to return to
because it was never there,
it was a lie.)
Then in the background I hear
a whimper (that's you)
the sound funneling me back into
the
now of your face
pale and quivering,
like a mollusc without its shell.

Naked
you stand,
your truth pried open before me,
waiting for the knife of my rage to cut

and in a moment of horrifying clarity
I realize that you have been shucked!
Your exposure is indecent
(and somehow brave)
you burn in the light of my gaze
and are finally free.
(It is only much later
I dare to consider
that perhaps,
so are we.)
Now,
carefully,
so as not to perpetuate harm,
I take her small hand
and we tip-toe away,
abandoning the spent husks
of past selves behind us,
trailing all our dark painful
roots along with us
like bloody testaments
to these stillborn lives
as we pull further,
further, further,
still pulling
today.







Anne Walsh


El Grito

It is a delight, an absolute soul delight, to be here.  And I’m one of those women who would not otherwise be heard this evening were it not for Jael Uribe starting all of this in the Dominican Republic and for women like Saba  throughout the world who make it all happen.  But I have a river in my throat.  The spate of it ready to break.  And so this first poem is me introducing myself to all of you and to Jael sitting for so long depressed with uterine cancer with only the e-mailed poems of female friends to sing to her and the primordial glow of the fire of her computer to light herself by.  As Jael says:  These women were powerful and just didn’t even have a clue of how much good they could do by sharing their words with others.   But now we have scream.  For women as Jael also put it “lost in the ordinary, just like me”,  all the women pulled in every direction of service but to themselves.  But we’re none of us lost.  And found we are powerful joined rivers, un-throated.  This first poem is me introducing myself to Jael.  It’s about me and about how I write and what I believe and how I am not home alone at this moment because of her and because of Saba and because of all of you, whom I consider family now.



Cosmos Country

There is no one from nameable country.
We each come from distance
so great its light is only ever just arriving.

From the self we left before we got here
to this one
is past the vault of time-

that cathedral ceiling
in the climb of your spine.
I stand before you now

not who I ever was before,
liquid wall of shimmer
in my newborn mouth,

my words charged particles,
fangs of constellations
rending

the antelope body of worlds,
tossing them side to side
like a bear does the salmon he loves.

And the bear is never more empty
than after he eats  the salmon.
And the salmon is never more full

than after she’s swallowed whole by the bear.
All caught in my fangs there,
across the river of sky

in spate that is my chest.
Time is for burning not wasting.
I light the match

with my tongue longer than distance,
dawn breaks from the end of  it.
My name is DawnLighter

and cosmos is my country.
There are no passports to come or go.
The entry is viaduct.

The channel underneath things,
the waterway of worlds,
the beautiful spate of the dead.

Your breath is the bridge.
Breathe deeply. Cross over.
Welcome home.




Listening in Tongues


I’m the kind of writer that takes a long time to write anything.
But when I do speak you’ll hear

what the ear of my mouth has been listening to all this time.
It will sound like sudden rain to you because that’s how love sounds.

You’ll say why didn’t those stupid weathermen predict her?
And I’ll answer falling from roofs and branches and your face,

because they’ve forgotten what weather is.
They’ve forgotten it’s a kiss.

It’s because they don’t have the ear on the tongue to hear,
the silent mouth in the ear for not speaking.

Until spoken to
by the voices of the dead.  

That unpredictable river
for which I have always been preparing.

Only then am I stripped of all preparation
enough to earn  the silver there.

No one without ears sees me coming.
Not even I can predict me.
Creature that I am,
in the river of the dead. 


Ashram of Disturbance

I’m a reclusive writer
and my words are reclusive too.

Come, cloister with me.
Ahh, but you must quicken your pace

to keep up with my slowness.
My solitude is swift.

In the ashram of disturbance,
the world under words

that words can’t go to but spring from
my dead forehead winks like a city

and moves like a waterway.
My solitude is

a flash in the universe’s pan.





Christmas Candy

You kept Irish on your tongue like the last Christmas candy
you try to keep going because you can’t get any more like that.
You were never a local anywhere I ever saw you,
not since you left Ireland so long before that even your memory of it slanted
like snow under someone else’s memory of a streetlamp in winter.
That furious quiet.  That anchorite white.
An electric pink prayer falling up from its face.
And you never went back.
I’m sure that’s why I was born with a chest that’s a ship of goodbye.
Why I’ve left every place I’ve ever lived.
Why I’m a local nowhere.
Why I carry goodbye with me like a business card.  Like hello.
Why no one can place my accent or the where of how I speak.
You were nineteen when you left County Mayo. And your dad’s new grave.And the dog on the porch.
Twenty-one when you married a man in Philadelphia who hit you when he drank.
And he drank all the time.
How the time must have dragged.  Like the tick of clock with only an hour hand.
And you couldn’t save the kids from him, either, especially poor little Joe.
Did you dream then of the wolves of Mayo, an even older memory than yours?
Could you hear them howling in Philadelphia so far past real midnight
that Primary Night was again and you ran in it with the wolves
and they spoke Irish and the night sounded like a river?   Did you remember then?
Did you remember the language of yourself in all that blue light and lips curled off fangs
running from  a man to the wolves?
Tell me in Irish, our Christmas candy language.
Light my Alder tongue with choice.
Forge in my smithy mouth your master silver work of loss.
And in our water language, behind our  mudred shield of trees      ,
I will play with little Joe in all the forests of the world




Richard James Allen


Unstill Life
for Karen


Your beauty cannot be translated,
but I would fail not to try.

It generates a weather
no meteorology can describe.

It is most like a flower,
a flower with moods.

An unstill life,
in no need

of arranging,
it arranges itself.

It is not fixed,
so how can I fix it? 

It doesn’t need fixing,
it is perfect, unbreakable.

Even when we both die,
it will still be here.

What language can I say this in?
Teach me to translate this. 
My Mother’s House

I don’t know if my mother can see them,
but this house is full of spiders.
I counted at least eight active webs
tucked into the corners of the bathroom.
Perhaps she doesn’t see them.
Or perhaps she enjoys their company,
busy little workers, keeping house like her.
They don’t ask questions either,
hanging on to what seems like nothing.


* “Abandon” first published in The Blue Hour Magazine, 2013




Mark Tredinnick


Soft Bombs


From under the shower I look
Up at jacaranda blossoms, suicide
Bombers in party dresses, fallen over-
Night on the skylight in the rain.

And I think of you, the tender hope-
Ful violence of the sacrifice involved
In loving me, each kiss a pretty body
Part, a broken fall from grace.





Encrypted Scripture                                                                      

For Anne at Seventy

The afternoon is an acid bath
    out of which your old life steps
Renewed, ages relinquished like childhood fears, strata shed like tears.
The future is spread out all the way to the ends of the sentient earth,
The light a saffron incantation sung in eleven tongues
 in lines of seven syllables each by alder leaves and
Maples, and pinned up against the autumn sky by magpies
And bluewrens. When you learn to live from the inside out,
 this is the weather you earn.

Sadly, it’s not the only sort you should expect:
            justice is rarely so poetic.
The third age, like the second and the first,
Is washed by storms and more than
likely its climate is changing fast, too. But I have a feeling
You’ll be ready for that: your serious heart has made of your life a place
Of happiness, with a roof
          that lets only the light in.
      Ageing well is growing up and going down
At the same time, daily, to the well of being. Drawing, from that aquifer, your self.


The afternoon—which was a shortcourse
                                                     in the yoga of erosion—
Has fallen dark now, and the waning moon rises in its aftermath
Like a languid silk balloon, and why is that old trick so new again
Each time? Ageing, you teach me, is like that, too:
the art of losing, the love
Time makes with form, and the space that leaves, the freedom it wakes.
Coming of age, the way you do it, is Eros dancing backward,
looking forward; not so much flying as falling
with style, out of your own arms
                                               back into the arms of the Beloved.


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Compilación virtual del Festival Grito de Mujer. Aquí podrás leer desde nuestra selección destacada, hasta algunos de los poemas presentados en el festival Grito de Mujer, aportados por hombres y mujeres solidarios, en homenaje a la mujer y contra la violencia. Este blog tiene el fin de dar las gracias a toda la gente que nos ha apoyado. Quienes siendo o no poetas, han sumado su grito. Podrás conseguir lo mejor de nuestra causa en nuestras antologías impresas.

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