The shadow of your story

That evening
your voice was low
you spoke slowly on a darkened stage
and opened a door to the past
that let the present in
in a surge of unfiltered hate
photographs and grainy films
faces, names and more faces,
gone, dead, tortured, gone
your family, friends, neighbours
the town you called home
bombed to the ground
nothing left of houses, schools, shops
only the gaudily coloured billboards.

“Write,” you said
“Write about our genocide,
you have seen it too,”
but my tongue cleaves to the roof of my mouth
there are no words for what you have shown me
Tears make poor ink
they cannot show the thoughts they write
words turn to dust
when human hearts have turned to stone
to do what they have done

The story of the tiger
haunts our nights,
the horror that goes beyond tears.

(For the Tamils of Sri Lanka)

Easterine Kire | 2012



Easterine Kire (Iralu), one of the finest story tellers from North East India, is a poet, writer, and novelist hailing from Nagaland. She has published several volumes of poetry as well as number of novels and her writings have been translated into Norwegian, German, Uzbek, Croatian, Italian, Catalan and Nepali. From 2005 to 2007, she had been the ICORN guest writer in Tromsø, Norway, where she continues to live and work.


Journalists for Democracy in Sri Lanka

  • JDS is the Sri Lankan partner organization of international media rights group, Reporters Without Borders (RSF). The launching of this website was made possible by the EU’s European Instrument for Democracy and Human Rights (EIDHR), of which Reporters Without Borders is a beneficiary.