Entries Tagged 'poetry' ↓

Chay Magazine Call for Submissions

Call for submissions
(Visit http://chaymagazine.org for details)

Deadline: May 15, 2008

Having observed in Pakistani society, a disturbing tendency towards fear and shame around issues of sex and sexuality – that is to say, around a normal human interaction – the founders of Chay Magazine feel that sex and sexuality should enter the public discourse. The taboo and silence around sex and sexuality are oppressive on all of us, irrespective of gender, and lead, at the very least, to unhappiness in our daily lives and, more often, to violence, shame, depression, ill health and general social malaise. We at Chay Magazine endeavor to bring to the Pakistani reading public a place to converse about those things we are most shy of. Our hope is that, through this, we can become braver and stronger, more powerful, self-assured, and just and fair members of society.

Our focus is on Pakistani society and our themes emerge from this context. However, Pakistan is only our starting point. Chay Magazine aims to enter the fray of international feminist discourse and, as such, we invite writers of all nationalities, geographies, stripes to contribute. We are not so much interested in where you come from as in what you have to say.

For the first few issues, we have outlined some broad themes, which are listed below. While we are looking in particular for work around those themes, we are always looking ahead to later issues so, if you have some work kicking around that you’d like to submit, feel free.

Let’s Talk about Sex
o Talking about sex and sexuality – why do it, the taboos around it, the problems with it, the silences
o Sex/Gender, gender roles and gender identity
o Talking about sex and romance
o Standards of “moral” conduct relating to sex

The Politics of Sex
o Sex-positivity
o Sex and feminism in Pakistan
o The politics of shame
o Religion and sex(uality)
o Visions for a new Pakistani Feminism

o Sex: enjoyment, coercion, guilt, force
o Sex and marriage
o Domestic violence and rape
o Virginity

o Saying no and saying yes
o “Sluts” and “whores”
o Sex-work
o Religion and Sex
o Virginity
o Re-appropriating language

We are looking for

– Feature Articles 500-1000 words. These can be analysis, commentary, historical explorations or any other non-fiction on the theme of the issue.
– Poetry and Fiction. There is no real restriction on the subject of the poem or story. If it gives a nod in the direction of the theme, we’re happy. Please send no more than 3 poems or fiction pieces in the vicinity of 1000 words.
– Artwork. Again, there is no particular restriction on artwork. If there is particular work you are interested in submitting, please email in with a query.
– Translations. We accept original translations of thematically relevant works in any genre, from any language.

Send queries and submissions to: chaymagazine AT gmail DOT com . Please attach .rtf or .doc files (we cannot accept .docx files), .jpg or .pdf for images. Please send in a small bio along with your submission as well.

We are an utterly non-profit, non-commercial, money-less concern; therefore we cannot offer any compensation to our writers. In time, we hope to become rich, famous and commercial, at which point we hope to offer you pots of money.

Kyla Pasha and Sarah Suhail
Co-executive editors, Chay Magazine


New poem up. Check it out, eh?

You invented India
over my head, called me wet
and pink, and overly looked upon –
You are so benevolent, old love.


آج کی شاعریٓ

I’m somewhat abashed about quoting a Noori song as today’s poetry, but it’s good poetry, dammit, and who cares if they’ve sold out, grown their hair longer and decided to play Sufi?


دل میرے رو لے
کیا کیا تُو بولے
میں سن رہا ہوں سدا

کیسے کہوں میں
پتھر بہت ہیں
پھولوں کے رستے جا

او ساتھی رے
ان راہوں کو تُو جان لے

ہم بھولے دنیا بھولے
ہم بکھرے، اب کیا رونا
بیتی یادون کے سائے اب ہیں پرائے
اس چھاؤں کو تُو بھول جا
سن لے

دل میرے رو لے
کیا کیا تُو بولے
میں سن رہا ہو سدا

دریا نہ ساہل، طوفان منزل
کانوں میں ہے شور سا
کیسے کہوں میں

موجیں بہت ہیں
پھولوں کے رستے جا
او ساتھی رے
ان موجوں کو تُو جان لے

New Audio on Main Site

I have a new poem up on the main site. Please check it out and tell me what you think,

Some Real Pakistani Writing

I say that’s it’s real Pakistani because the opening line has a Suzuki fx in it and it doesn’t explain what a bloody fx is. If you don’t know, you don’t know, and you just have to deal with your ignorance. It’s bloody lovely.

I’ll start you off but then you go and read her work, and comment like the good person you are. Excuse me, but I’m particularly excited about her because she’s a student of mine, Sidra Nadeem:

In the early 90’s Suzuki-fx was the car. It wasn’t a good car or a bad car; it was the car everyone had. Amongst all the reasons I had to love mine, the most important was that it was an 87 model, always as old as I was. For a girl, I’ve always been more interested in cars than usual, probably the effect of growing up with brothers only. I had decided at a very young age that I would get married to a guy who owned a Ferrari F-40, a demand that I recently reduced to a black Honda Accord, seeing that no one in Pakistan has a Red Ferrari. Read more…

For Annabel, a Translation

My country, I give myself over to your streets
where we have learned again that no one must walk tall.
That if some lover of yours steps out on his devotions,
he must lower his eyes, he much watch his back.
For devotees must hold now the heartbreaking knowledge
that the bricks have been locked up and the dogs set free.

There is excuse enough for tyranny. And the few
madmen who call your name find
those crazed with want prosecuting them, judging them,
and wonder who will defend them, who is there that’s just.

But those who will pass the time, will pass the time,
counting the nights and days of separation, like this:

When the prison window dimmed, I imagined
that maybe the stars entangled themselves in your hair;
and when the window bars shone, I knew
that morning had lit up your face again.

Though we may watch the days and nights go past
in the shadow of these walls and the door that’s barred,

this is how people have always fought with tyrants –
theirs isn’t a new way; and neither is ours.
This is how we’ve always grown flowers in fire:
their defeat isn’t new; and neither is our win.

So I don’t curse the sky for lighting. I don’t resent our separation.

Because if today we are separated, tomorrow, we’ll be together.
This night and this distance is no great thing.
If today our enemies have floated up to the zenith,
it’s a few days of godhood; it’s no great thing.

Because those who keep faith in their love for you
know what the cure is for these endless days and nights.

– Faiz Ahmed Faiz
tr. Kyla Pasha

The above is a complete experiment and not to be reproduced under any circumstances without my permission. It’s up here for critique and because a friend was wondering about all the Urdu.

Dreams Bite


Dreams bite
Dreamer and legend
at the edge of purpose
I see the people of winter
put off their masks
to stain the earth red with blood

Continue reading →

نثار میں تری گلیوں کے اے وطن

نثار میں تری گلیوں کے اے وطن کہ جہاں
چلی ہے رسم کہ کوئی نہ سر اُٹھا کے چلے
جو کوئی چاہنے والا طواف کو نکلے
نظر چُرا کے چلے، جسم و جاں بچا کے چلے
Continue reading →

Love From Gabriel

GlobalComment has published another poem of mine – Love From Gabriel. Natalia is my hero, as always.

I’ve also got another poem up at my site, a new one – The Heat of His Departure.

Comments, ladies and gentlemen, are much appreciated!

“Names Will Never”

Another new poem – Names Will Never. Have a look.

Progress Report

I promised Ponni in Delhi that I’d have a manuscript ready for publication by 31 December 2007. In aid of that, I’ve finally put together the list of poems. These are poems I consider publishable. I haven’t put them all together to see what the page count is. I’ll probably have to cut some out. Those that know or recognize these poems will be able to help me with that cutting. If you don’t know where it is check out my DeviantART page, where you should be able to see most of them. If you can’t, it’s because they’re mature content. Meaning I cussed or said “cunt” or something. Continue reading →

Website Designy Blues

I’ve been thinking recently about redoing my website. Yes, again. The thing about it is that it’s not entirely user-friendly. It doesn’t take a genius to get around it, but it’s a big opaque in its design.

So I can use Joomla if I like. It’s a web-design assistance kind of software – a content management system and it looks pretty good, except that I’d have to learn it all over again and … argh. Don’t wanna.

Any suggestions? On what software to use or what to do for a new design? What would make it  easier to use, what would you like to see… ? Anything.

These Poems Associate Freely

and they do so at GlobalComment.com. Part 2 in a series of my poems on the site, thank you very much.

– Curtsy to Natalia.