Poetry by Hillol Ray
Human Rights (HR): A Cross-Cutting Issue
Hillol Ray (HR)
Universal momentum to our common struggle
Is leading us to promote human rights-
Regardless of frontiers, such awareness is awesome,
And is gaining the new heights!
The demand for a world of law and dignity,
Of peace and justice, is too visible now-
And founders of our United Nations are moving
One step closer with their annual vow!
No doubt, we live in the age of human rights
But violations and barriers are still found-
On many parts of the world, such rights are
Callously denied and make us spellbound!
Values of equality or non-discrimination
Should not be trampled on to benefit the few-
In stead, a climate is needed in which human rights
Will flourish for our global view!
The twentieth century has bequeathed us
An impressive set of standards to drive-
About human rights, enshrined in binding covenants
That will surely lead us to thrive!
Racism and intolerance plague all countries
By scarring our societies or marring our joy-
And examples are so many when we see politicians
Are using race-based appeals as a toy!
The essential conditions of growth and prosperity
Of mankind are based on many issues-
Like the rule of law, transparency, and accountability
Without obscuring the vital tissues!
Full participation of all citizens in decisions of government
Must play an important role-
And I am so sure about universal implementation
Of human rights via our heart and soul!
Time has come to break the vicious cycle of deprivation
And violations of human rights-
And replace it with virtuous cycle where
Thoughts will nourish without loosing the sights!
The fruits of Holocaust today demonstrate
The nightmares of totalitarian power-
Wedded to perverse and helpful theories
Of racial superiority reigning from ivory tower!
Now I see a need to end culture of impunity
Or declare no peace without justice on Earth-
And impose a promising approach to violators
Of human rights to stop their mirth!
By acknowledging common human rights,
We accept common humanity without a doubt-
And create a world of equality and non-discrimination
To avoid matching game of shout!
Peace cannot be achieved where dissent is forbidden,
And ideas are limited by force-
While economic success and growth
Depend on governance of its people as the source!
Deliberate obstructions to create ideology
Of human rights need to be seriously thought-
With universal ratification and implementation
Where painstaking efforts will be sought!
Today, as I am growing old quietly with the sands of time,
I am so convinced to see-
The dynamic blueprints for progress of human rights
That is turning on deadlocked key!
An indispensable role is now played by United Nations
And it has become a pulpit for us-
To air grievances, bare witness and share experiences
With the universe without any fuss!
The visions of my busiest pen today
Dream about the global solidarity as a powerful tool-
For the next millennium, to teach tolerance
And diversity to our children in global school!
Still I urge you all to look at the flaws
In the modern society that we have neatly built-
And emulate the ideas of the civil society
While embracing the harmony without a tilt!
The peoples of the world who today
Are under oppression are crying for genuine action-
And asking to deal with their basic human rights
By ignoring the race, religion or faction!
So missions of my heart are wrestling now
To make ringing affirmations of a global need-
And rouse "human rights: a cross-cutting issue"
As a fruitful tree while I plant the seed!!!
March 3, 2002
Food For Thought
Over the last decade, humanity has conquered
And made great progress in every facet-
From mapping the human genome to
Global communications that became a real asset!
Giant leaps have been taken via the Internet
And the gentle click of the silent mouse-
To make the world viewable now without travel
And from the comfort of our house!
Yet a human tragedy still afflicts the world
For denial of most basic human rights of all:
The right to food for millions of hands
And mouths that are now ringing the global call!
Food is vital to human life, and its scarcity is triggering
The daily hapless global fights-
'Cause hunger is a major constraint on
Human development followed by human rights!
Hunger kills lives and hopes of individuals,
While damaging peace and prosperity as well-
It may even take the toll on learning, art, and literature
Where our thoughts need to dwell!
This problem is acute in the developing world,
And relief needs to be desperately sought-
In an effort to make this millennium free from hunger,
And the battles we already fought!
Globalization of agriculture has progressed so well
As a mixed blessing for the mankind-
And now strives for a pattern of economic growth
To reduce poverty that we can still find!
The complexities of agro-ecologies require big push
For new research, money and power-
To speed up the food security with new patterns
And flow, blessed with heavenly shower!
Be assured, ending hunger or food security
Is not simply a matter of growing more food-
Rather it's a challenge to allow food to flow
To the needy irrespective of hoarders' mood!
Now we must focus on long-term strategy
To eliminate hunger and the underlying cause-
Empowered by safety nets to protect the vulnerable
Before we even take the single pause!
In a stretch of own madness, the strategy to build
A hunger-free world looms on my mind-
Devastated by the sadness of the poverty
And I do prefer to put the subtle clause in a bind!
Undoubtedly the World Agriculture needs
The global governance today and I am too sure-
So may I raise this issue as a 'Food for Thought'
From a divine heart, innocent and pure??
March 13, 2002
Hillol Ray - A Poet of