from Al Jazerra 2 September 2012

"The uprisings in Tunisia were started neither by political action nor a military coup led by officers or opposition parties. Instead, the blade raised against the regime was made of banners and chants. And none cut more deeply than Abu al-Qasim al-Shabbi's poem, The Will to Live, which begins: "When the people demand freedom, Destiny must surely respond." This verse of poetry, tacked onto the end of the Tunisian national anthem, tightens up the collective Arab memory like a firm muscle. We learned it in school, reciting it for years and analysed it in exams. But with the beginning of the Jasmine Revolution in Tunisia, it budded once more within our grief - fresh, as if written only for that historical instant. But alongside the classics by professional poets was the spontaneous poetry of a people lighting a pathway to hope."

Stray Bullet - By Mazen Maarouf

"After crossing the living room,
the library,
the long hallway
and the picture that holds us on a trip to the River Alkalb,
then passing the automatic
washing machine,
and my mother, exhausted
despite the automatic washing machine,
it bends its trajectory with the
force of gravity
and finally rests at the back of my head where it kills you."

More on Al Jazzera, 2nd September 2012.

Also check out: 

A New Poetry Emerges from Syria's Civil War

"More literal and visceral, Syrian poetry is being spread on social media and chanted in the streets... A lot of poetry and beautiful lyrics are rising up from the ashes in Syria," says expatriate Syrian writer Ghias al-Jundi..."

And From PBS Newshour

January 20, 2014

The Conflict in Syria Through the Eyes of a Young Poet

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