Sword and Karakuli

. By Nahidah Khalid

Ask me, not, my name

A soul, like you

I’m on sale

From the land

Of, no more, saints

Where death has no end

And despair is nurtured

A doctrine

By the…

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Thank You! Aga Shahid

. Mirza Tufael Hussain

Dear Shahid,

What Agonises me  More;

Is You! Among Our Unsung Heroes.

And Eyes that Now Weep Blood? Futile!

I among This Ungrateful Nation.


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What do I remember

. Ishrat Bashir Matoo

What do I remember

Of disgrace, of pain

Or  of joy, of grace?

The  last leaf trembled

At the tip of my pencil.

The offering was the whole of autumn.…

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The vapory noose

. Syed Rabe'a Bukhari

Away from din and delusion of the city

When evening skids down my glum shoulders

And darkness stalks

Like a lost sobbing child

Rambling down a bligh…

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Shall I ever talk

. Rabia Bukhari




Gather the pieces rendered asunder
The day morose city melted
Against a bruised gaze,
Glints of vision punctured
The only unaided eye
Battling rive…

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Of our Azaadi and your country

. Uzma Falak




I liked your face, bronzed by time and burden
I liked the gleam in your eyes—of truth, of fight.


When you asked me: How does a free Kashmir l…

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A Blank Page

. Bhavneet Kaur




Faces submerged in stories
Voiceless and blurry

Through the tinted window glass
I saw her face alas

A blank gaze and an empty wail,
with three chil…

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Negative solitude

. Ishrat Matoo

When the thick black cloud of pain 

Down the rugged peaks of heart 

Drove the doves of bliss away 

And the feeling of being abandoned

in the midst o…

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An appetite for love

. Mubashir Karim


I have developed

An appetite for love

In love

I want to turn

The whole valley

Into a paper clip


In love

I want to drink the stars

Eat the…

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At the foothills

. Uzma Falak

I gather my summer dreams

tuck them in longing

while I wait for winter—my savior

at the foothills.


I carry satchel of dreams on my shoulders

and w…

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Akin to a weary traveler

. Rabe'a Bukhari




“If dust had an alphabet, I would learn.”
- Aga Shahid Ali

Erelong, descrying a golden blush
When soft orange rays
Of an evening sun
Melding with…

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Shadows of Curfew

. Faraqshaan Hameed

Shadows of Curfew




Morning with fade lights
Birds fly with hidden plights
Vehicles adorned with red lights
Announcing the curfew for Valleyites

Wake up with sweat f…

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Plastic Caterpillar

. Muin-ud-din




I am a plastic caterpillar
Crawling from under the dawn
I welcome the gloomy moonlight 
like the guests of freedom
I am the one who breathes the n…

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Who set my City ablaze

. Ikram Ullah

The poem is written by Ikram Ullah from Srinagar. He says he was influenced to poetry by the turbulent times in Kashmir during 2010 civil protests a…

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Night and day

. Ashfaq Saraf




Night and day,
As i play
On your hands; between the fingers,
I cease to be a subject,
As i no more belong to a sect;
Strange though,
As underneath t…

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. Syed Rabe'a Bukhari




Last drops of adieu

Hang about pendulous lids

Of a tired evening.

Breezy evening of a strange summer

Flutters empty like a beggar’s cloak


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. Syed Rabe'a Bukhari

Pieces of my broken soul still cling to you

Drooping breaths from frail limbs of life

Moonbeams, like quicksilver, skid down my ashen face

I see the…

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You - the only solace

. Syed Rabe'a Bukhari


Through how many such ray less nights

While scratching corroded wounds

Have I been writing to You

In obscure, blurry ink

By the shade of an onerou…

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the Sinner, the Witness

. Aalia Shaikh




a voice broken from its body
to winds clinging; drifting wayward
its hoarseness spiking hair on necks, bristling skins

a banshee-call haunting t…

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I am Guru

. Syed Rabe'a Bukhari




I have long been born for now
Weary of space and hour
Knitting the shards of existence
Into silence
Around a turbulent self
Roaring and screeching

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Headlines from home

. Ashfaq Saraf




From home, comes a dead body,
wrapped in late September breeze, overtly displaying
its left arm, dangling like a branch of dried apple tree,

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. Aaliya Sheikh

It was a year ago that I left Valley after working with Kashmir Dispatch. Hailing from Mumbai, the Kashmir visit changed my perspective about the co…

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Agnoy Incarnated!

. Rabia Bukhari

Here I sit, once again
On the window sill
Clutching the wood, golden auburn
Perched like a tiny bird
That feels so insignificant, so belittled
Under this…

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This fall mother

. Ashfaq Saraf




This fall mother,
The wounds have not been retraced.
They have let the curtain remain, and further
to the astonishment of my half-fed limbs,

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