I am not a Sri Lankan

For crossing passages
I have a visa
as Israelis passport
in the hands of Palestinians.

For going past the ‘Checkpoints
I possess an identity card
as the American ID that the Iraqis have.

For spending
I have several coins
just as those French coins
with Syrian citizens.

In our soil
a national anthem is aired
just as the Indian National anthem
sung in Manipur.

In my land
a flag is hoisted
as the flag of China
flying in Tibet.

In my finger
the impression of landless refugee is seen
as that branded by fire
in Myanmar’s hand.

Translated from Tamil by Latha Ramakirishnan


Theepachelvan Pradeepan



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.