Saturday, 22 October 2022

The Zejel Trilogy - Three Poems by Amita Sarjit Ahluwalia (Amita Paul)


The Zejel Trilogy 


A Short Zejel


Soft velvet night cool silver moon

Breezes whisper soon the monsoon 


Clouds form and vanish form again

Now a brief shower a little rain

Still the pains of summer remain

Breezes whisper soon the monsoon 


When the fire-hot midday sun burns 

Koels and rainbirds sing taking turns

Long painful day short evening earns

Breezes whisper soon the monsoon 


Sorrows of life waiting for joy 

Ploys of hope and prayer employ

When small comforts begin to cloy

Breezes whisper soon the monsoon 


Soft velvet night cool silver moon

Breezes whisper soon the monsoon 



A Classic Zejel


Love poems moved from sand to Spain 

A Moorish caste to Europe’s pain

A plaintive soothing sweet refrain 


A name that rang clear as a bell

The Spanish Poetry form Zejel 

Reminiscent of Persia’s ghazal 

Nobody’s loss everyone’s gain 


Exotic names for thoughts in rhyme

Ring past the dunes of desert time

Hum through the azure waves saline 

Colours of cultures bleed and stain 


When caravans changed into fleets 

When music moved from wilds to streets 

When troubles could turn into treats 

Pearl tears transformed to diamond chain


If only we’d let goodness trace

Our sufferings with its gentle grace 

The World would be the loveliest place 

Let love its free beauty retain 


Survival of the fittest, yes,

But let us not from soul digress

Let Spirit our endeavours bless 

Let all that’s soul- nourishing remain



A Jewelled Zejel


When love surged like an ocean 

Drowning all earth in emotion

Useless was hate’s bitter potion


Then the heart was full of wonder

Ears filled with the sound of thunder 

Petty twigs were soon pulled under 

Everywhere a sweet commotion 


When love surged like an ocean 


How can artificial preaching 

Replace centuries of teaching 

There’s no question of trust breaching 

Trust that is built of devotion 


Useless was hate’s bitter potion 


Confidence emerged from fears 

Smiles replaced sorrowful tears 

Everyone is soothed who hears 

How love won over hate’s notion 


Drowning all earth in emotion 


Useless was hate’s bitter potion 

When love surged like an ocean

Everywhere a sweet commotion


Amita Sarjit Ahluwalia is the pen name of Amita Paul, a retired civil servant who is at heart a poet and teacher. She writes , mostly poetry, in English, Hindi, Punjabi and Urdu. She was awarded the NISSIM International Poetry Award 2019 and then the Reuel international Award 2020 for Non- Fiction Prose, while Destiny International Community of Poets UK, declared her Poet of the Year 2020 as well as Critic of the Year 2020, and again in 2021. Women Empowered India declared her their WE Greenheart 2022 jointly with Bengal based poetess Rituparna Khan. Her work has been published in several international anthologies and also in many journals and online magazines such as Das Literarisch, Doaba, Lothlorien Poetry Journal, Yugen Quest Review, Setu Bilingual Magazine, GloMag, Fasihi Magazine, and Spillwords, besides twice being among selected featured poems on the global NaPoWriMo Website, once in 2021 and then again recently in 2022.


  1. Thank you for publishing this on your site, Strider !

  2. Delighted to see my Zejels on this prestigious poetry website!


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