Mukhtar Huduri




Mukhtar Huduri, a young Somali poet and writer whose poetry reflects his concern with the political and military conflicts among the different factions in his country. He also treats subjects related to the Islamic world, including the Palestinian problem. Mukhtar was born in the city of Hudur in the south of Somalia. He grew up in both the city of Mogadishu, the capital, and the city of Bidoa. After high school, he moved to Sudan for college education. In addition to his prose writing, Mukhtar has one poetry manuscript, titled On the Stage of Events.

Mukhtar Huduri’s poems are translated from the original Arabic into English by poet and translator Nizar Sartawi.



The Famished

If you saw them
you’d think
they were bones
dug out of graves.
they stagger as they walk
as if they were
And if they’re pricked
no one removes the thorns for them.

Into the bottom of the well

I see Gaza’s brothers
have thrown her into the bottom of the well
I see them there
dragging her despite her wounds…
She walks… and walks…
like an old man crawling
Says she: Leave me
Let me defend myself
Leave me; do not be so unkind to me
But they never heard her, never responded

They came back from the well
in the evening…
to cry aloud
before the press
and show on the cameras
the blood-stained shirt
while Gaza was in the well surrounded by serpents
and the whole strip was mutilated…
O good Patience!

The bombs of Zion are falling in cables
and Gaza is bleeding
under ruined houses
The sky hides the dust of shelling
and smoke…
covers every home
like a skyscraper amidst the gloom
A roaring is heard
like thunder
a child is moaning…
and crying under the rubble

In every household…
is a story whose title brings tears
and whose inhabitants tell you tales
of a martyr maimed
an infant’s head shattered with ache
people burned alive
and all is heard and witnessed
by the whole world

The morning comes
without sunlight
the evening follows
but Gaza is under missiles
The catastrophe
has come with the alliance!
Have mercy O God
the compassionate, the merciful.



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