Where Destiny with men for Pieces plays:
Hither and thither moves, and mates,and slays,
And one by one back in the closet lays.”
Beyond the Barricades is happy to feature the bio of a poet who is presently living in Pakistan.
She came to my notice when she won a poetry contest here at this site with her brilliant poem Dog’s (a)scent’
My years in writing started early – enough to not leave me with a memory of it. Born in Hyderabad, Sind in
Pakistan but having grown up in the United Arab Emirates, I had been living a full and decisive life until my (supposed ephemeral) visit to Pakistan that turned into a stay longer than planned or expected. I have spent 7 years in Pakistan to date. And each of these years have been transient within the tangibility of a moving clock but elongated in the unending passing of time.
I have always contested that ‘home’ is where the soul belongs. And I have left my soul in the UAE, where memories of my time there probably lead a nomadic life in its journey back to my body that resides on different soils.
The move affected me deeply, which is why I have never understood the concept of origins and boundaries.
My writing took a formative turn in Pakistan. I have built a new nomad over here because of which I live constricted and stretched in loyalty between the real and substitute (love).
I’ve always been a reclusive writer. My words belonged to me alone and would not do the baton dance in front of an audience – that has been my lacking, I came to realize soon enough. My publishing journey started with eFiction India Magazine. This is the place where I met with many other writers and have made lifelong connections through a belief in my philosophy and aura of writing.
The publishing world is an ocean full of sharks. It is cut-throat, competitive to the degree of self-depreciation and a writer can very easily be lost of navigational escape. It’s like plunging into the pool. You need to flap your arms and learn to swim in order to get out (escape). But once you learn the basics to swimming, you turn into a writer who becomes the lifeguard to other plunging aspirants.
John Holland’s Poetry Sans Frontieres site has provided me with the opportunity to feature as a guest on his blog Beyond the Barricades and I am ever so thankful and delighted to post links to some of my works that is amongst many of the molecular steps I am climbing to universal spotlight.
A little about me in a gist. I obtained an O’ Levels from Ibn Seena English High School in Sharjah, UAE and a degree in Bachelors in Business Administration from Newport University. University proved to be a literal haven wherein I discovered and groomed myself to be able to confidently put myself out there in the writing world. I have been published in several online and print magazines but I still have a long way to go! I have a poetry book in the pipeline collaborating with a writer from and in Africa. To speak about the book, it is going to feature my very early works of my very early years – my late teenage years (or more so juvenile as I like to better call it). The writing will be raw and unpolished but I haven’t wanted to change a word of what I had written because it projects my style then, which is a considerably notable difference to my writing now. I have always literally bereaved not having a teacher or a chance at a formal writing course (to the least) to help me understand the tactical system of writing and have had to self-teach from reading closely into established and peer poetry (a faithful and consistent foundation plus spine). The works of Rumi, Gibran, Wilde and Byron enchant and enrich
My works :
I write under two names. My real name Umm-e-Aiman Vejlani and pseudonym Sheikha A.
I started writing out for eFiction India Magazine and am a regular contributor to the magazine that very generously
accepts my work to feature alongside the most brilliant writers I have met. My poems [Liar], I want to be your story, Looking towards the past, Writs and Wits, The sky of my share and To those who leave for a Better Life are some of my poems that can be found here. The link below is to the current magazine but also to the back issues.
To those who leave for a Better Life is a dedication to my late uncle whom I miss very dearly. His life is an inspiration
to many and if I begin to even mention the frameworks of the life he has fought and lived, time will run short.
‘Bleed Glee’ (Tongue Magazine) is a poem I wrote after having watched the macabre of a bomb blast that happened at Abbas Town in Karachi, Pakistan where many innocent lives suffered fatality or a fate worse than death. It voices not just that incident but many precedent and current blasts that the country routinely experiences as if in a casual, informal, regular, routine rendezvous with the angels of death being invited to your afternoon or evening tea.
http://tonguemag.co.uk/Download (page 52)
‘Scarred’ (Tongue Magazine).
‘…And this is why the caged bird sings’ (Voices De La Luna) talks about not just the confinement of a bird that chooses to stay in a cage in an act of protection but I just realized also speaks of my innocuousness of not having experienced the culture and history of life and its demons that I have felt in other poets’ works. I am enamoured by European and Irish poetry. I have been reading poems by Chinese writers as well and the kind of richness of words and a depiction of their day to day events shows to me a life that is different from what is learnt from History books in Schools. The geography/history that a writer can create in their poems is the words of history. That life is history. History – not what is past but what lives as a shadow in the current and future.
‘Invisible Land’ (Red Fez) is a reconstructed rendition of my original poem that I’m hoping will feature in the collaborative book I am expectant of.
‘Pre-rain’ (The Commonline Journal)
‘The Memory Jar’, ‘The lines around my eyes grow old’ and ‘What You Do’ (Boston Poetry Magazine)
‘Comfort Soul’ (e-book Aqueous by Solstice Initiative)
http://issuu.com/solsticeinitiative/docs/aqueous (page 83)
‘Uneven’ (The Camel Saloon)
This poem speaks about not just the inequalities and inequities of society in general but also between people (who
practice discrimination by choice as if it is permitted by law).
‘I lose my verse’ (Open Road Review)
‘This’ (American Diversity Report)
‘Dog’s (a)scent’ (Poetry Sans Frontieres)
I speak about the hypocrisies of politics and politicking.
‘In the ‘ssshh!’ of things … and When the artist says heart (collaborative conversation) in Issue 4 of
Alphabet and You.
Most of my articles can be found on the following links :
I have upcoming publications in American Diversity Report, Eunoia Review, Lakeview International Journal of Literature and Arts, and Agave Magazine.