Tag Archives: World Poetry International Festival

Amelia Barney World Poetry Empowered Artist Winner, 2012 from BC, Canada.


Cedar gift flowers for visitng poets.








Ariadne’s Note: I would like to explain about the World Poetry Empowered Series Awards.

The word “Empowered” focuses on being the best you can be, letting go of  negative delusions   and allowing that bright light that we all have within us to grow.  Empowered creates a space for talents and insights to emerge and to share that beauty with the world. Elder Amelia Barney is one such example. We are honoured to present her here.

 Ahousaht Elder Amelia Barney has created the lovely cedar flowers gifts especially for the World Poetry Canada International Peace Festival participants. Cedar weaving using the bark from the cedar tree traditionally was used for clothing, hats and blankets, being water proof and light. It played a large part in the traditional life of the people; the cedar has as much importance as the eagle. Cedar was also used for cleansing and had a strong spiritual aspect. The cedar bark is harvested with care and blessings.

Amelia has made these cedar flowers gifts with love for our World Poetry Family. We are deeply honoured to present these precious gifts to our National and International guests. They can take home a little bit of the proud Ahousaht First Nation  to remind them of the Peace Festival.

Background information on Ahousaht taken from the Ahousaht First Nation site:http://www.ahousaht.ca/Home.html

Ahousaht means people of Ahous, a small bay on the west side of Vargas Island in Clayoquot Sound. BC. Ahousaht can be translated to mean ‘people living with their backs to the land and mountains on a beach along the open sea.’ Ahousaht First Nation territory encompasses much of Clayoquot Sound with the village of Maaqtusiis (Marktosis Indian Reserve IR #15) being the only reserve or village site inhabited year-round. Ahousaht First Nation has 25 reserve sites within the nation’s territories, all accessible only by float plane or boat.

The traditional territories of the Ahousaht people are bordered by the Hesquiaht and Tlaoquiaht nations to the north and south respectively. These territories, within and beyond the Clayoquot Sound Biosphere Reserve, are home to an incredibly diverse ecosystem and a rare ancient temperate rain forest. The Ahousaht people have lived in harmony with these territories since time immemorial guided by an understanding of the Nuu-chah-nulth worldview, “Heshook-ish tsawalk” which means “everything is one.”

The traditional governance system of Ahousaht still exists today and is represented by three principle Hereditary Chiefs who are responsible to the Ahousaht people and the hahuulthi (ancestral territories and resources).

 Thank you for being part of our World Poetry Family!

Cedar flower and cedar earings.

World poetry Proudly Presents Wilma Seville from Canada!

Welcome Wilma!

World Poetry is pleased to present a new member to our group!

Wilma Seville writes poetry, short stories, magazine and newspaper articles. She originally is from Lachine, Quebec and now resides in Hamilton, Ontario. She sits on the Literary Arts Committee of the Hamilton Arts Council and has done so for more than six years. She is a member of Tower Poetry Society,  Poetry Center and World Poetry.

In her work, particularly in poetry, she writes about nature, human behaviour, people with special needs, and on the lighter side, she writes  about her beloved cats, Boots and Tiger.

Her interests include music – classical and semi-classical, operetta,  reading,
walking at the waterfront and attending literary functions.

She is the proud mother of two grown up children and a wonderful son-in-law.




Excuse me please, won’t some body help?

Outside the plaza, where he stands most days,
he bends to feel the shape of coins,
which strangers, as they pause to listen,
toss into his case.

Arms and legs ache from a long day.
smile fades from his face, he closes his accordion
tucking it neatly into its case.
he’s ready to call it a day.

He walks to his familiar bus stop and waits.
buses pass him, but they do not stop.
one woman driver pulls over, speaks and points
to the moved bus stop across the busy street.

My eyes notice his predicament
although I cannot hear what is said.
I see her point and him start off
in the direction where the new stop is.

I can see construction in his path.
my heart is in my throat, sheer will power
propels me ahead with my walker.
I try to catch up, to help if I can.

White cane wildly waving.
expressive face etched with distress
rushing feet going too fast for me.
he charges towards the danger zone.

Excuse me please, won’t somebody help?
tears in his voice and eyes
people ignore him as they rush by
wrapped up in their own affairs.

Unseeing, city workers, backs turned
gather around the yawning pit
as an  office worker, in dark suit and tie
sprints forward, takes charge in a gentle way*

“I’ll help, may I take your arm?
we’ll walk across together
I know where the new stop is.”

I breathe a sign of relief
as I see the danger passing.
happy to know that he is safe
at least for this one time.

Wilma Seville ©

 Wilma writes:”Yes, of course you may read my poem on the radio show.  I hope that it will help people to understand the plight of blind people and  the dangers they face in everyday life.Bye the way, I cannot remember if I mentioned this, but I got some action from the local transportation system here (HSR) as well as from City Councillors, Jason Farr and Brian MaHattie.The HSR drivers were given sensitivity training so hopefully this may never happen again.I was very pleased that something was done! Wilma.

SUSAN’S  MOTHER                                                           

Sixteen years old
That’s all she was
When pain and sorrow
Came to call

No more than a child herself
Caught up in uncertain times
Nazi Germany gobbling Europe
England threatened, our boys gone.

Moments of passion
Tingled with anxiety, grief
Fear of separation, death
Life changed, a seed was sown.

Long months without a word
Slender body changed
Morning sickness
Shock, anger amongst family.

In shame, she was sent away
To hide from folks around
Until her time would come
She would be with Aunt Jayne.

The day of reckoning came
When the child was born
No friends, relatives gathering
To welcome the little one

Instead, the new Mom left
Bereft of newborn child
Sorrowing heart, aching void
Scarred for life- always wondering

©2010 Wilma Seville



World Poetry Proudly Presents Duke Ashrafuzzaman from Canada & Bangladesh!

Featured guest

The World Poetry Cafe Radio Show  with hosts Ariadne Sawyer and Jason Lawrence were honoured to welcome Duke to the radio show. He spoke about his passion for Tagore and read a poem in English and  Bengali. We also talked about the upcoming peace festival and the two Poetic Necklace Exhibits. To LISTEN TO THE SHOW, CLICK HERE!

 The Vancouver Tagore Society is one of our esteemed partners for the World Poetry International Peace Festival. Our great thanks go out to Duke for his beautiful work with all the selected poems that you sent in  for the peace festival. He compiled them into one file and put a lovely border around them. This took him many hours but the result is beautiful and something we all can be proud of. UBC is starting to print up the poems. The gift poems are already printed and the photos were put into frames. They look amazing!

Duke Ashrafuzzaman, is one of the founder-directors, and General Secretary of the Vancouver Tagore Society. He had emigrated to Canada in 1994 from Bangladesh where he taught Computer Science in the University of Dhaka and Shahjalal University of Science and Technology. He also worked as a sports reporter for the Daily Observer and contributed regularly in the sports and science sections of weeklies Shandhani, Jai Jai Din and Mouchakey Dhil. He translated a few philosophical essays and poem. A fan of Rabindranath Tagore, and music and literature, Duke is well-known in the cultural circles of Bengali community of Lower Mainland as an active participant. For his day job, he works as a software developer with Faronics Corporation.


Rabindranath Tagore

In those frenzied primeval days, when
  The Creator unsatisfied with himself
  Destroyed new creations after creations
Amidst repeated shakings of His head

In His exasperated disapprovals,
Arms of the raging sea

From the bosom of
Primordial Mother Earth
Snatched you away — Africa.

Consigned you to intimate vigil of the
Thick forests,
  Inner-quarters of miserly light.
There, in your undisturbed leisureliness

You were mustering mysteries impenetrable,
    Mastering  impregnable arcana  of
    Oceans, Lands and the Heavens.
Nature’s unseen magic webbed
 Spells on your sub-conscious.
In the guise of crudeness you
  Ridiculed the frightful,
Subdued fear of perils
  Portraying yourself hideous
     With powerful sublime grace
             Of the terrible
     In the trumpet-roars of frantic
             Dance of destruction.

Alas! The shadow-clad
   Beneath your dark veil
   Your humanity remained unknown,
In the muddled eyes of indifference.

They came with iron manacles
Their claws sharper than your wolves’
     Came hunters of humanity,
    In conceit blinder than your
Sun-bereft murky jungles.
  Civilization’s barbarous greed
    Bared its brazen bestiality.

  Your muted wails in misty forest-alleys
       Mired your earth with
       Your blood and tears
Under the spiked boots of those
   Monsters’ feet
   Horrendous lumps of mud
      Imprinted eternal smudge on

Your insulted history.
Meanwhile, on shores of the ocean

 In parishes of their villages and towns,
       Temple-bells tolled for worships
        Mornings and evenings
        In the name of their Merciful God;
Playful children frolicked in mothers’ laps;
Poet’s music played hymns
             Worshipping Beauty.

Today when the dusk looms in the
       Western horizons
        Breathless in stormy winds,
When the hyenas emerged from
       The depth of secret abyss, and
       Proclaimed the day’s end with
          Ominous unholy shrills,
     Poet of the turning age,
     Stand beneath the last rays of

        The setting sun,
        At the door of that humiliated woman,
        And plead,
           “Forgive, forgive us” —–
In the turmoil of vicious delirium
  Let these be your civilization’s
            Last noble words.

             [Translated by: Duke Ashrafuzzaman, Vancouver, BC. April 2012] (C)

    রবীন্দ্রনাথ ঠাকু

উদ্‌ভ্রান্ত সেই আদিম যুগে

  স্রষ্টা যখন নিজের প্রতি অসন্তোষে

    নতুন সৃষ্টিকে বারবার করছিলেন বিধ্বস্ত,

           তাঁর সেই অধৈর্যে ঘন-ঘন মাথা-নাড়ার দিনে

                         রুদ্র সমুদ্রের বাহু

                    প্রাচী ধরিত্রীর বুকের থেকে

                  ছিনিয়ে নিয়ে গেল তোমাকে, আফ্রিকা,

          বাঁধলে তোমাকে বনস্পতির নিবিড় পাহারায়

                        কৃপণ আলোর অন্তঃপুরে।

                    সেখানে নিভৃত অবকাশে তুমি

                       সংগ্রহ করছিলে দুর্গমের রহস্য,

         চিনছিলে জলস্থল-আকাশের দুর্বোধ সংকেত,

                      প্রকৃতির দৃষ্টি-অতীত জাদু

            মন্ত্র জাগাচ্ছিল তোমার চেতনাতীত মনে।

       বিদ্রূপ করছিলে ভীষণকে বিরূপের ছদ্মবেশে,

        শঙ্কাকে চাচ্ছিলে হার মানাতে

         আপনাকে উগ্র করে বিভীষিকার প্রচণ্ড মহিমায়

                       তাণ্ডবের দুন্দুভিনিনাদে।


হায় ছায়াবৃতা,

            কালো ঘোমটার নীচে

          অপরিচিত ছিল তোমার মানবরূপ

                             উপেক্ষার আবিল দৃষ্টিতে।

          এল ওরা লোহার হাতকড়ি নিয়ে

            নখ যাদের তীক্ষ্ম তোমার নেকড়ের চেয়ে,

                   এল মানুষ-ধরার দল

        গর্বে যারা অন্ধ তোমার সূর্যহারা অরণ্যের চেয়ে।

                   সভ্যের বর্বর লোভ

নগ্ন করল আপন নির্লজ্জ অমানুষতা।

   তোমার ভাষাহীন ক্রন্দনে বাষ্পাকুল অরণ্যপথে

          পঙ্কিল হল ধূলি তোমার রক্তে অশ্রুতে মিশে;

    দস্যু-পায়ের কাঁটা-মারা জুতোর তলায়

                   বীভৎস কাদার পিণ্ড

    চিরচিহ্ন দিয়ে গেল তোমার অপমানিত ইতিহাসে।


সমুদ্রপারে সেই মুহূর্তেই তাদের পাড়ায় পাড়ায়

      মন্দিরে বাজছিল পুজোর ঘণ্টা

      সকালে সন্ধ্যায়, দয়াময় দেবতার নামে;

                শিশুরা খেলছিল মায়ের কোলে;

                কবির সংগীতে বেজে উঠছিল

                             সুন্দরের আরাধনা।


             আজ যখন পশ্চিমদিগন্তে

       প্রদোষকাল ঝঞ্ঝাবাতাসে রুদ্ধশ্বাস,

       যখন গুপ্তগহ্বর থেকে পশুরা বেরিয়ে এল,

      অশুভ ধ্বনিতে ঘোষণা করল দিনের অন্তিমকাল,

               এসো যুগান্তরের কবি,

               আসন্ন সন্ধ্যার শেষ রশ্মিপাতে

               দাঁড়াও ওই মানহারা মানবীর দ্বারে,

                              বলো ‘ক্ষমা করো’ —

                হিংস্র প্রলাপের মধ্যে

          সেই হোক তোমার সভ্যতার শেষ পুণ্যবাণী।