Deep Song: Poetry for Our Times!

Before the Scales, Tomorrow,  Otto Rene Castillo, Guatemala

And when the enthusiastic 

story of our time 

is told, 

who are yet to be born 

but announce themselves 

with more generous face, 

we will come out ahead 

–those who have suffered most from it. 

And that 

being ahead of your time 

means much suffering from it. 

But it’s beautiful to love the world 

with eyes 

that have not yet 

been born. 

And splendid 

to know yourself victorious 

when all around you 

it’s all still so cold, 

so dark. 


Y cuando se haga
el entusiasta recuento
de nuestro tiempo,
por los que todavía
no han nacido,
pero que se anuncian
con su rostro
más bondadoso,
saldremos gananciosos
los que más hemos
sufrido de él.
Y es que adelantarse
uno a su tiempo,
es sufrir mucho de él.
Pero es bello amar al mundo
con los ojos
de los que no han nacido
Y espléndido,
saberse ya un victorioso,
cuando todo en torno a uno
es aún tan frío, tan oscuro.

Darkest Before Dawn, Kaushalya Bannerji,2020

The Critical Attitude, Bertolt Brecht, Germany

The critical attitude

Strikes many people as unfruitful

That is because they find the state

Impervious to their criticism

But what in this case is an unfruitful attitude

Is merely a feeble attitude. Give criticism arms

And states can be demolished by it.

Canalising a river

Grafting a fruit tree

Educating a person

Transforming a state

These are instances of fruitful criticism

And at the same time instances of art.

Old Tree, Kaushalya Bannerji, 2020

What They Did Yesterday Afternoon, Warsan Shire, Somalia/England

they set my aunts house on fire
i cried the way women on tv do
folding at the middle
like a five pound note.
i called the boy who use to love me
tried to ‘okay’ my voice
i said hello
he said warsan, what’s wrong, what’s happened?

i’ve been praying,
and these are what my prayers look like;
dear god
i come from two countries
one is thirsty
the other is on fire
both need water.

later that night
i held an atlas in my lap
ran my fingers across the whole world
and whispered
where does it hurt?

it answered

Defund, Kaushalya Bannerji, 2020

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