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Poetry

Poetry

Let Me Hear Your Truth

Chaala Hailu Abata, an Ethiopian poet who was imprisoned and tortured in his country of origin for writing poetry critical of the regime, lives in safety in Sweden today. But his thoughts remain back...

Text: Chaala Hailu Abata May 03 2019
Poetry

Salt and Metal

The metallic taste of clotted blood, like the salt from a cold sweat, seems ubiquitous. Ineradicable. Liyou Libsekal was born in 1990 in Ethiopia and currently lives in Addis Ababa. She is an award...

Text: Liyou Libsekal May 03 2019
Fiction

(the business of living)

Carlos Egaña is one of Venezuela’s most prominent poets. Like many other poets of his generation he mainly publishes his poetry online. Internet has become a second home since traditional media are...

Text: Carlos Egaña January 22 2019
Poetry

Gazing at an empty mirror

Sahar Mousa is a Palestinian poet and writer. She published on Facebook during the wars in Gaza in 2008 and 2012, a series of articles that received attention. The articles led to death threats from...

Text: Sahar Mousa November 29 2018
Fiction

The Walls of Stockholm

"My name is carved into all the trees / and scribbled on all the buses / despite how I cannot write a single word… "

Text: Wafai laila September 11 2018
Poetry

Dancing like girls

"Don’t dance like a girl / I will dance / Don’t move like a girl / I will move"

TEXT: Khaled Alesmael September 11 2018
Poetry

Immortality

Yasaman R. Choube was born in Iran and now lives in exile. For PEN/Opp she has written a moving story about love, oppression and loss.

Text: Yasaman R. Choube December 18 2017
Poetry

To be silent is to say we are not alive

Romeo Oriogun is a poet from Nigeria, a country where homosexuality is criminalised and can give up to fourteen years of prison. In Nigeria, the publishing of queer texts is restricted and even if...

Text: Romeo Oriogun December 18 2017
Poetry

From Havana to Reykjavik

Cuban poet Orlando Luis Pardo Lazo was forced to leave his home country in 2013 after having been denounced as a “traitor” to his country and accused of carrying out “counter-revolutionary” activities...

Text: Orlando Luis Pardo Lazo March 10 2016
Poetry

My Eritrea

Poet and journalist Haile Bizen is known in his native Eritrea by the epithet “the man who broke the silence”. He was forced to flee the country after repeated persecution and systematic interrogation...

Text: Haile Bizen April 08 2015
Poetry

Poems in exile

Iranian poet, LGBT and human rights activist Elham Malekpoor has published several collections of poetry, most of which have been censored in Iran. She particularly deals with child labour and queer...

Text: Elham Malekpoor December 16 2014
Poetry

Diary of the silent

Syrian poet, Housam Al-Mosilli, was forced to flee Syria in 2012 after he was imprisoned three times and repeatedly tortured. Today, he lives in exile in Turkey. In the poem, “Diary of the silent,” he...

Text: Housam Al-Mosilli September 10 2014
Poetry

The spring of blood and ashes

“Blood and ash from the stolen Arabian spring / have penetrated the mornings, evenings and nights,” writes Syrian poet Bandar Abdulhamid in his collection of poems. The brutal reality of Syria is...

Text: Bandar Abdulhamid September 10 2014
Poetry

While we are waiting

Syrian poet Amira Abul Husn is one of those who have chosen to remain in the war-torn country, using her pen to bear witness to all that is going on around her. In her poetry, she depicts fragments of...

Text: Amira Abul Husn September 10 2014

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