Friday, October 22, 2021

Adrian David: When The Euphrates Ran Red

Click here for an audio clip of the poem.

In a land south of the Black Sea,
we lived together in peace
for over a thousand years.
Then darkness engulfed us,
and life became a ghastly nightmare.

Reduced to second-class subjects,
we fell prey to the ruthless empire.
Brothers who lived alongside us
turned their backs in scorn,
owing to the entrenched bigotry.

Gendarmes stormed into our homes,
and dragged us out like animals,
leading us on death marches
across the desert as the sun blazed.
Countless skulls left scattered along the way.

Our homes were torched by the mobs,
devoured by the flames of hate.
Our women, abducted, raped, and killed,
succumbing to the fangs of supremacy
Our world turned upside down.

Innocent blood saturated the earth
as humanity came to a standstill.
Headless corpses lay in stagnant ditches,
letting the Euphrates run red.
Over one million futures were stolen.

Bidding a tearful goodbye,
we who survived fled our beloved homes,
stricken by distress and fear.
We lost our kin, our land, and our liras.
Yet, the one thing we never lost was our hope.

They strived to wipe us off the map.
But we rose from the ashes and thrived.
The prayers of our forefathers were not in vain.
We Armenians are still here, going strong.
Today, tomorrow, and forevermore.

(In memory of the 1.5 million victims of the Armenian Genocide)

Adrian David writes ads by day and poetry by night. His poems explore themes of conflict, existential crises, society, and everything in between, from the mundane to the sublime.

Saturday, October 02, 2021

Elise Youssoufian: Կամաց, կամաց ("Slowly, Slowly")

Bathe each fresh cut in our rivers of tears.
Take care of the root.

Kiss all the pain into shields of stars.
Take care of the root.

Plant battered hearts at Mayr Hayasdan's feet,
Breathe truth beyond snag of Grey Wolves' gold teeth.

Be vessel, be witness, be living stone.
Sing us gutted, uprooted, but not alone.

We are.
We are.
We are still here,
Hungering for a taste of justice,
Making bread out of bitter fruit.