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‘Small Feet In Iraq’ and other poems by Dalya Kanani

By: Dalya Kanani

Small Feet In Iraq

The sun,
She paints over the homeland
With her glistening shine and hope
Gazing as small feet wander
The streets of Iraq

Without interruption or intervention,
Bazaars are flooded
ears ring with commotion
Small feet dance around
the colossal magnitude of the Tigris.

Small feet wander the marketplace
Eyeing bountiful produce
Hope and family spread their wings
No fear of weapons pointed at them.
No mother watches closely behind in fear
Or is a shield to her child from danger

Small feet dance to the farm,
Smiles and laughter stirring
mothers beaming

Small feet are embraced before school
Knowing it will not be their last
Small feet return home everyday

Small feet never feel lonely
The strong sun casting
A friendly shadow behind them

Small feet know how the sun
Paints everything, she sees
The sunrise in her glory lusters
over the homeland
every breaking dawn
for Iraqis who have awaken
and those who never will

Every waking instant
The ordinary and extraordinary
will occur
As her majesty the sun
Watches us gleaming

As dusk breaks
Small feet lay beneath her gleam
End of the day is near
Saying goodbye is never easy
Especially for Iraqis


Nurses Fighting COVID

Front line defense
Against an army
Growing by the second

We stand proud
Prepared to protect
The vulnerable
The sick
The weak

We are nurses
With children and families
Loved ones
Our lives and health on the line
To uphold our duty to you
The patient

We promise to honor the privilege
No matter how capable the army we are fighting
Our love and compassion drive us
Past the sleepless nights and fear
Just for you
The patient

We stand with courage and bravery
To treat a pandemic
To fight a war
We intend to win
Just for you
And our duty to you
The patient


Blood Stained Hands

Me and my people are known well
For hospitality and generosity
Not for chaos or radicalization
Until you were a guest in my home
You arrived unwanted by my people
Surely, they do not appreciate mayhem
Or illegal occupation
Your weaponry painted devastation
Soldiers invaded homes
Tortured prisoners with guerrilla warfare

You turned children into orphans
Wives into widowers
Us Iraqis are hospitable
But also, unforgettable

Be prepared for another shoe we fling
At your face with no regret
We will ensure you will not forget
The misfortune you plagued us with

Ali AlKinani,
The youngest victim of blackwater,
Was unlucky
For being born in an oil rich country
Your greed drove your ambitions
To invade and conquer at any expense
You are a man eager to wage war
Slaughtering an innocent 9-year-old boy
In front of his traumatized father
Surely, I will make sure you will never forget
Your blood-stained hands


Dalya is an undergrad student with experience in speech writing and performance. She is an avid poetry admirer and is interested in global health and cultural awareness.


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