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I am a human being: Syrian poet

A Poem written by Ghadeh Al-Sama’nSyrian poet Translated by: Rouhi Shafii

If you come to my house

bring me a black pencil.

I want to charcoal my face

so not to be caged for the crime

of my beauty.

And a cross to rest on my heart

to stop it desiring.

Give me an eraser

to wipe out my lips.

I do not want being charcoaled

for having red lips.

Bring me a spade

so I uproot all my womanly desires

and rake my body

without which

I will easily go to paradise

so it is said.

Give me a razorblade

to shave my head

so my head breathes fresh air

and think for a while

without a scarf.

Bring me thread and needle

to sow my tongue

to my mouth.

This way,

my cries are more noiseless!

Don’t you forget the scissors!

I want to censor my thoughts

on daily basis.

I also need washing powder

to wash my brain

and spread it on a rope

so the wind blows my aspirations

to the far distances.

You know, one has to be rational.

Bring me a silencer

if you can.

I want to silence my sobs

when they call me a prostitute

for being in love and choosing.

I need a copy of my identity

to remember who I am,

as the pious brothers or sisters

are guiding me with insult and contempt.

For the love of God

If you see somewhere

they sell your rights

buy me some.

I want to mix them with my food

and eat my rights before others.

And finally, if you are left with any money

buy me a placard

in the shape of a necklace

I want to write on it in bold

I am a human being

I am still a human being.

I am a human being every day!


About Amnesty UK Blogs
Our blogs are written by Amnesty International staff, volunteers and other interested individuals, to encourage debate around human rights issues. They do not necessarily represent the views of Amnesty International.
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