Category Archives: Poetry

Poetry: Divan of Shah by Shah Asad Rizvi


is the key

to all doors

of peace.”

Divan of Shah is a collection of poetry that explores the dance of love, life, consciousness, and all things that truly matter. It’s been long since I’ve read poetry that doesn’t sound like its authors attended the same workshop, so reading this was refreshing.

The collection is made up of just a little over a hundred poems, with structures that bounce from short to long, and breaks of wise and beautiful quotes. This tender anthology is an honest display of love in its rawness and vulnerability.

The poems take us into a bold journey of love – a love of life, of self and other. There are some elegant and exquisite poems that I found deeply romantic and mood-elevating. There’s a lot of dance in the poems and when you drink enough to understand the context you’ll find how well he writes about dance beyond the physical. There’s the experience of dance within, of feeling, of the soul, and celebrating the dance of life as a gift.

“One step at a time

stumbling on struggles

and courage turns the tide,

we dance the dance of life”

It is quite long, and it took me double the time I’d thought it would take me. However, if it’s not borrowed then there is no need to hurry it. Take sips of it and enjoy every depth and breadth of it.


Poetry Prescription: Ijeoma, Rupi and Billy

Poetry is more than a few lines that rhyme, or throwing around big words trying to sound lyrical and esoteric. It’s an art and a form of communication. It exists in all languages, written or oral, and has always its uses in teaching, entertaining and beautifying the way we communicate with each other. There are poems that have made personal changes in people’s lives and poems that have made dramatic changes in the world and in history.

This year I have been consuming three poetry books throughout my personal journey, and these have helped me heal, put me in a good mood and changed my perspective on certain issues. They are;

milk and honey – Rupi Kaur

Questions for Ada – Ijeoma Umebinyuo

Chameleon Aura – Billy Chapata

These three books are filled with beautiful and simple poetry of love, pain, healing, inspiration, self-love, forgiveness, injustice, feminism and more. A lot of them are empowering, you read two lines and your whole mood for the day can stay on sunshine-mode.

I’d like to share some of my favourite poems from each book and I recommend that you get at least one of them. You’ll thank me later.

Questions for Ada – Ijeoma Umebinyuo

Before creating you

The Universe washed her hands

“This will take time,”

she said

as she closed her days.


Forgive your mother

for all the miracles she

couldn’t perform.


I am too full of life

to be half-loved


The way women are

told to carry pain in their bones

frightens me.

milk and honey – Rupi Kaur


have been

taught your legs

are a pit stop for men

that need a place to rest

a vacant body empty enough

for guests but no one

ever comes and is

willing to



other women’s bodies

are not our battleground


don’t mistake

salt for sugar

if he wants to

be with you

he will

it’s that simple


i will not have you

build me into your life


what i want is to

build a life with you

-the difference

Chameleon Aura – Billy Chapata


let no one silence the loudness of your love. if they can’t handle

the intensity of the music, gently escort them out of the room.



you’re not a burden. your past was never too heavy. their shoulders

are just not broad enough to carry a woman like you.


(don’t interrupt her)

and when you see her glowing

dripping gold from her pores

turning wounds into flowers

loving herself unconditionally – let her be



i have no interest in being for everyone

sometimes my truth will taste like whiskey

and sometimes my truth will taste like nectar

but i will never dilute myself for anyone.

I hope this poetry, and if you get a copy of any one of them, becomes your friend and therapist. It is one of the benefits of reading, to find a great companion in the pages. You’ll find yourself in one or more of the poems, and it will take a while before you return them to the shelf. 

Poetry: Stolen Pleasures

From: Poetically Ghetto

there’s an intrusion
barging through closed gates
breaking folds so delicate
turning the resting soft stones

devil spears this cottoned earth
canes into the silken clay
defeated rails of defence
misfortunes of the luckless prey

an agenda without gender or age
what it finds it takes
without asking or begging
no sound of permissions

broken barriers
wrecked walls
with arms of phallic privilege
and cannons of the entitled

fathers, brothers and our keepers
looting our temples
in which direction do we head
when shepherds have horns and fangs?

Raw Rhythm of Rue

If cold concerns

mingled on your chest

If sore struggles

begged to be confessed,

you still needn’t have left.

For now I wearily stand

with a dusty plate

waiting to be served

perhaps a rinsed version

of a soul that never went.

So I stitch a dutiful smile

with a sweet lining of lies.

I sew the hem with pretty pretense

for a world quick to tire

of waters overfeeding the eyes.

Loss and I in arms entangled

through arid paths and dark waters.

At times we swim, at times we drown

wailing aloud, sitting without sounds,

we crack and mend, we mend and crack.

I lay my head on rigid pillows,

plumped with drifting shadows

of unsung songs I wish I’d heard.

The unsaid and undone write a tune

with a raw rhythm of woeful rue.