“09 August, 2019” – Mehvish Rather

Tonight as rain splashes against the asphalt on the street
The dust still doesn’t settle into the asphalt on the street.

You only breathe within your walls while they sell you a dream,
The insomniac at check-post will be halt on the street.

In the homes where hearths have cooked blood and stones
there they stand selling salt on the street.

In a silent war, the nation rejoiced as they locked our doors [1],
Their dirty secrets are open vault on the street.

Now in the clash of the lead and the stone,
Will it be my own fault on the street?

[1] The abrogation of article 370 and 35 (A) was meted out with jubilance in India while the people of Kashmir were put in lockdown and detention (and still are as of today) because those two articles represented their political aspiration, identity, autonomy and the last hope in the struggle for freedom.

Artwork for this piece by Hannah Issa.

Hannah Issa is an artist and graphic designer who lives in Wichita, KS. She comes from a small village in southern Lebanon. Her personal art is heavily inspired by Middle Eastern culture and her religious upbringing.