illicit poems

barbed wire poetry Sonya Kassam

the loyalty of love or the love for loyalty

and none left untouched

no ocean that separates your land from mine no mountains mark our borders the same wind blows to my side the same shadow casts on your side time after time we repeat the same old... though we speak in many tongues *** Any guesses as to what I am speaking about here? It is in … Continue reading and none left untouched

a history, erased

This poem is a gathering of my thoughts following the recent Kenyan elections. Fear, frustration, division, celebrations, calls for peace so that we can "move on", move on to what? It is not about the elections, this is an inevitable expression of what we have ignored or suppressed over a long period of time. *** … Continue reading a history, erased


After I created A Land, Broken at my poetry workshop we had to rearrange the same poem from 2 quatrains to 4 couplets, without deleting or adding any words.  when should we be unheard? we, the interdependent and erect hearts spoke in the master’s tongue                         … Continue reading Rearranged

A Land, Broken

I am participating in a Poetry Workshop where we will develop a habit of writing poems. The task for this week was to write an 8-line poem that has 2 quatrains (4 lines each) Being the 14th/15th August, I was inspired to write: When a land is broken by her masters And the pain we forget, … Continue reading A Land, Broken

leave heaven

i will leave heaven in an instant just to hear you recite poetry for me i will leave heaven in an instant for the scent of an incense stick in my memory i will leave heaven in an instant if the borders were erased and we could meet beyond their barbed wires on a land that belongs … Continue reading leave heaven

footmarks over time

if you draw the line someday it shall be crossed footmarks over time recognise no boundaries someday we shall erase borders (I am not so fond of borders, as you will see in my poem many borders)

so many borders

time after time we decimate a land, sketching lines, invisible but impregnable and a people who were once indistinguishable are now immigrants if they continue to wander across to the other side permission to graze for the grass does look greener even their herds have acquired nationalities a people who crisscrossed lands whose cultures were … Continue reading so many borders