Poetry: Quandeel’s Revenge and She by Fatima Ijaz

Fatima (2)

Fatima Ijaz, is currently teaching English and Speech Communication at Institute of Business Administration, Karachi. She is an English  graduate from Hartwick College, N.Y and York University, Toronto. She also holds a Master in English Linguistics from Eastern Michigan University. She won first prize at the Mclaughlin Poetry Contest in Toronto, 2007. Her work was featured in a poetry and art collaboration for #NomeansNo at the Music Mela, Islamabad’18 and at Art Baithak, Karachi University in March 2019. Her work has been published in Zau, Red Fez, Rigorous, The Write Launch, Abramelin, Della Donna, Whirlwind, These Fragile Lilacs, Writer’s Asylum and Praxis magazine.


Qandeel’s Revenge


Not too long ago, I the hated demon

The averse punchline in the grim

used to walk the streets of urban cities

and wash away the sins of men and women.


Since then, it has been a sudden demise

And I have fallen from my pedestal –

No longer alive.

So, “How am looking?” is what I ask you

Is it fair to ask you this now –

Now that it’s all over?


‘Love me or hate me’ you know you can’t

Escape me. I reach your roots like spider-veins

And I beguile your senses…

An after-death exquisite adventure.


But wasn’t it always like that with me?

An adventure with a ‘one women army’

My amazonion warriors, following me

The way indian dancers follow their lead dancer.


I search for an answer now, please do answer

“How am looking?” So from the vintage view of the

Outsider, please do tell,

And ignite the bell

Of Your Lord’s strange and strong mercy

“How am Looking?”  beyond all veils

of life and death?




A stapled blankness,

A neon sign that reads in bold:

Do not interfere.


When she was alone

She thought often of how trains

Outgrew silences, the locomotive start

Of engines, fires, rains –

Compare this to the still blackness of a quiet

Black train.


She ran over sentence after sentence of letters of longing

But it all came to the same conclusion:

Do not interfere.


When she was a little girl

she used to count the grass blades

And the innumerability of silence still stung.


I know, she thought to herself, I know,

Like the song in the shade under an eagle’s wing.

However, she must confess, she does not know

How, or what if, or why.



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