Poems

The Rights of the Journalist

The rights and duties of journalists were discarded
And thrown it into a grave,
They were killed on a large scale and eradicated
Not given their freedom of independent press without hindrance,
Could one tell where it is officially written?
And in which act or legislation it has been enshrined?
 
Journalists were jailed
Put into the criminal prisons
Also were shot down
And their rights were denied
And were not given any respect,
Could one tell where it is officially written?
And in which act or legislation it has been enshrined?
 
Injustice is everywhere and widespread
Not safeguarding the vulnerable and children
As well as the dependents
And women eradicated as well
Mogadishu been the worse,
If the journalists reported the injustices occurring
Why they were exterminated?
Hey, you kinsmen! Why the journalists were arrested?
 
The man who is twining the tricky rope and fooling the public
Living in a mischievous way
Opposing the quality of being tranquil;
And hey, you the thief! You're stealing the country's treasury
Firing the bullets and shooting the people
You will be liable to account for your actions.
 
Let me prevent myself to pant and breathe with difficulty
And get hoarseness while reciting the poem,
Somalis don't treat anyone with honour and respect
Neither do they give modesty and good manners
They show with excessive pride and self satisfaction about death and the
       graves
Regard their strength and unity as being of little worth
Victimize and exploit the citizens
Drain compatriots of their physical and mental capabilities.
 
The signatories of the international law
As they have verified it,
Three people are forbidden to be harmed or treated cruelly:
 
When there's an occurrence of disturbance and disorderly outburst
And people start fighting
Hot bullets fired from cartridge crisscrossing
Making a whistling noise like a rain
Coming from every corner,
The corpses too numerous to be counted
Plus countless wounded people as well
And the quality of life being unpleasant
One could escape free from the situation
Because couldn't bear the distress,
But in this instance it's the journalist who boldly goes into the line of fire
Crosses the fences
And reports the unbiased news,
S/he is a reporter without borders
It's forbidden to be harmed or treated cruelly
S/he is an independent journalist.
 
The man craving for absolute dictatorship
Living a life of devotion to hanging to power
Feasting with the higher position of office,
Dedicated himself to being a leader
With three stars general officer rank,
Dreaming all these responsibilities last night,
When the dawn broke
He waked up galloping in a seemingly uncontrollable manner
Beat thoroughly the dust from his body by wiping it.
 
But when gossip surfaces reporting lapses in his leadership performance
And journalists start digging deep into allegations of misconduct and mal-
       administration
He shows a low level of intelligence
Has no virtue and moral excellence
And lacks way-out alternative solutions to the crisis,

As he starts to show irritability and temper outburst
With anger and swelling jugular veins
Then he starts to shut down the newspapers.
 
Second it is the very fascinating artist,
Who diacritically mark and insert vowel signs correctly
Has profound knowledge of playing musical instruments
Easily available within reach at anytime
Willing to sing love songs
The long-established traditional genre of music
In order to appease your hunger.
 
Third, when things are bogged down
And no progress can be made to break the deadlock
And the situation is falling apart in a chaotic and disorderly way,
It's the poet who rolls his sleeves up
Start peeling the layers of difficult and ask the right questions
And takes up the matter onto his/her shoulder
So it's forbidden to be harmed or treated cruelly.
 
At times, s/he's very special responsible person
Has exceptional talent from God
Allah has given him/her creativity and cultural skills
It's an unusual natural ability
It's a deep-rooted and firmly planted knowledge
That goes far down the soil
And fights against the colonialists;
Other times, s/he's xabagbarsheed [particular kind of honeycomb]
Rainwater that fall as precipitation from clouds
And rain that fall during the Gu' [Spring] season
Or s/he's like the Dayr [Autumn] burst with full of amniotic fluid
Where majority of the domestic animals have given birth
Where there's peace and stability
And the people, thanks to Allah, are prosperous.
 
The person who expresses things in words
Uses as a point of history from which it can develop
And can carve very beautiful literature
Honestly, it's not possible
The legal and the cultural expert and the singer
And the poet to be harmed or treated cruelly.
 
London, 2008

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