Montag, November 20, 2006

Sheema Kalbasi`s poem "Hezbollah" first published in 2004 wont the Harvest International poetry award

Harvest International
is an annual arts and literature magazine published by the English and Foreign Languages Department of the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences at the California State Polytechnic University, Pomona. Harvest celebrates a diversity of cultures and arts, encouraging contributors of all ages to submit poetry and fiction in English and other languages as well as visual art. The magazine is released in November of each year.

Iranian born Sheema Kalbasi is a human right activist, a poet, and translator. She is the director of Dialogue of Nations Through Poetry in Translation, director of Poetry of Iranian Women, the poetry editor of Muse Apprentice Guild and the associate director of the Other Voices International Project.

Furthermore she has created the horizontal and vertical poetry and is the first Iranian poet to have co-authored in English. Her works have been published and translated or are forthcoming in various anthologies, literary journals and on line magazines. Kalbasi has worked for the United Nations and the Center for non Afghan Refugees in Pakistan, and in Denmark.

She lives with her husband and daughter in the United States.


It is absurd to close your eyes
and pretend that the Bahais
have never been slaughtered or forced
to convert to Islam,
as if the executions of political prisoners
or the Kurds were just part of a game,
an unwritten law in a lawless land.

Extended customs, mute prayers,
grave to grave, Tehran cemeteries
black from the flesh of the youth
and on the faces of the mothers lay
chipped beliefs and spreading tears.

The News shows the Godzilla regime
- mourning over the tassels of demolished
homes of the homeless in a country
not even close to my land - sits on tinplates
of power and announces another castration.

This perhaps is a blessing from God
that when there is a Friday Prayer in Tehran,
we still cry over the Arab-Israeli War.

Hezbollah: Party of God, it follows the distinctly Shiite Islamist ideology
developed by Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, leader of the Islamic Revolution in Iran.

Bahai faith: It is a global religion founded by Bahá'u'lláh in the 19th century in Iran.
It is the forbidden faith in post revolution Iran.