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Tarek Ali Hassan

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Member Since: Aug, 2002

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Tragic demise of the Matriarch
by Tarek Ali Hassan

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Recent poems by Tarek Ali Hassan
•  crushing pyramids
•  she never had a faithful knight
•  Condemned
•  Oddities
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           >> View all 41

A vision for a mime or modern ballet drama

Yin-Yang, a secret note,
Who is afraid of Virginia Wolf and the
Autumn of the Matriarch
a Tragedy about the demise of Isis

contemplation one

Thus spoke Horus the son as he tearfully eyed the great and mighty Isis:

I saw her on her bed of flowers on a sunny afternoon
unwanted, forgotten, shriveled and shrunk
the flowers had grown thorns
I saw her ask
is this it?
I am old I am dying
I am cold I am crying
is this IT?
how can that be ?
all the sound and fury .. to this?

I saw her wrinkled
remembered her glory
the unstoppable magic
forever young ..

that terrible strength was her weakness
her downfall
ever protected from the knowledge of mortality
by feigned immortality
and action

you can't get old
decades and generations
learnt from her, worshiped her, adored her and applauded her

her mark indelible
the energy inexhaustible
you can't get old
hopeful, victorious, glorious
.. for right
with cruel certainty ..
you can't get old
you can’t die
you can’t loose
you can't loose
enjoying the short round
of winning

of winning the game of chess
you can't get old
you can’t die
you won’t die

and Horus remembered:

I saw her charging the baddies like nothing else in the World could, I saw her laughing,
I saw her accomplishing, asserting, achieving
I saw her asking,
for information
and more information
from the "official" quarters
as though she didn't know it all
but she liked to give her knowledge
Official backing official vindication

a magical sixth sense
had told her
that women were disempowered
she had to be a pioneer in the art of enquiry and learning
for she knew that she was .. important .. primordial

but after the second great war in heaven woman was disempowered, reviled, demeaned

denied and demeaned,
a few meaningless gestures were left
for the sake of appearance and decorum

but she was an exception to all that sham
she would speak with authority
and would never get old or weak

The guide for the perplexed
teacher fighter counselor guide
soldier sailor general
tutor maker creator
hammer clamour expert chide
and always supreme magician brings it off
and always wins

wins the game
the game of chess

and then she was suddenly discovered shriveled and afraid on that sofa of thorns

denied neglect, denial, rejection, staring her in the face
on that sunny afternoon
when she asked ....

"Physician heal thyself"
doctors never get ill
Isis, great Isis
can you face your fear?
can you resolve this fear for I can't
primal mother
mother yourself!
calm this crying

she asked about getting old
and no one answered
the all-powerful was now asking
about weakness!
The multitudes of worshippers had disappeared, confused
the subtle mounting rejection that pursues the weak was overtaking her

and no one answered her

who will answer?
who can make their voice heard?
so far up or so far down?
how can any one imagine
how vulnerable
the invulnerable are?

and I Horus cried
at her door:

I loved her so and hated her
how can she smite us all with that ocean of inexplicable weakness?

The all-powerful Goddess, supreme mother Creatrix?

how I wept over the lying centuries
of feigned omnipotence, the centuries of
our selfish unquestioning worship,
our unfair dependence

all the energies squandered
on paper thin delusions
collapsing like dominoes

I loved her so
but in her prime she had erected
all imaginable forms of .. BARRICADE !
she WAS so powerful !
in her feigned omnipotence
she had made herself .. UNTOUCHABLE !
Some force made her .. UNTOUCHABLE !
A fortress of FORTITUDE
she would never open the door
No one of her multitude of worshippers ever dreamed of opening the door

even I the great Horus sensed the anxiety gnawing at my liver:

when the crunch comes
all will fall apart and I shall be powerless to help her
perhaps I the great Horus was too ignorant
too arrogant
too weak too meek
"voie unique sans issue"

and then I hated her for exposing us without mercy
because I loved her so and could not love
she was the destruction of all male arrogance and make-believe
her lessons to mankind were electrifying
and then,

I sat by the great river and wept:
how it hurt that I could only
look at her pain ...
watch her shrivel and die
and know ..
just know ..

consciousness without power
is this heaven or hell?

is it wisdom? is it fear?
or arrested maturation?
why then this penetrating consciousness?
something arrested in the flowering of this universe?
from the great egg at Hermopolis
a big bang?
a wrong turning somewhere?

who will ever tell?

(Contemplation two)

when they had finally watched her shrivel and slowly die
and they smothered her in highest reverence

and the great virgin HAD to be impregnable..

Oh primordial Isis all is exposed now
will you still make all lovers impotent
for to protect your delusions ....
our delusions
of propriety? of form?

has anyone of these millions smothering you in worship imagined how lonely the revered icons are? The virgin mother? how cold it is up there?

Is it now too late?
Too too late?

who will dare fly high enough to share your joy or dive deep enough to assuage your pain?
must the great and mighty be shrouded in unattainability?
.... to cover up their need?
what curse has made necessity of all this pretence?
a curse has taught us to despise and trample what we attain

Act three

oh great and mighty Isis!
since your struggle for power with Ra
you, the supreme, were whisked out of circulation
It had to be so, even you, agreed at first
the supreme virgin mother of all things, balsam healer for all wounds, untouchable!

the price for challenging Raa and winning is to be made untouchable!
through a thousand and one iron-clad ploys and toys
and you affirmed this terrible twist
this subtle Nemesis
we are trained: whatever makes itself vulnerable to us we trample and destroy
for to drool over and worship the unattainable, the distant and the hard

familiarity breeds contempt we teach

we should have taught familiarity breeds respect!

familiarity is midwife to loving

how much did the Gods suffer then
on the mount of Olympus?

chosen home or forced exile?

pearls must not be thrown to the swine? We are told!

but pearls die slowly in their velvet lined protective boxes
and how about the true seekers
the seekers with a heart forced into conservation separation
must all, suffer this curse and be deprived and starved?

what curious formula
suffers the greatest things in life to be untouchable?
and how we all pay

the great untouchables and those who yearn to touch
"more than the calf yearns to suck does the cow yearn to suckle"
but to yearn is weak both ways
and it was decreed .. weakness takes you to the accursed land beyond where Osiris entombed cries for help

O Isis und Osiris

Once upon a time the story goes,
He did
offer himself to the swine
and was mauled and torn apart
She did
offer herself to the swine
and was mauled stoned and torn apart

did they build a symphony of new values? risking all, giving all?
did they set an example?
a new framework of understanding?
or did they condemn and terrorise the whole race?
and seed the birth of institutions
to affirm the condemnation damnation
to justify the terror?
the end of history dawns and no one as yet knows
which is the more terrible Golgotha:

to give and be vulnerable
or to refrain and stay immune?

and in our confusion
we have busied ourselves
inventing ingenious punishments
for both postures
for both sexes

(Requiem for a powerful woman)

much loved one
will you still pay the ultimate price
for this spastic rejection of all weakness
will you still meet all others
in attack formation
on the battlefield
even in your hour of need ?
.. still ?
and weigh me, loved one
victim tyrant,
with the guilt of doing battle
with a dying woman?


oh immortal mortal beloved
most beloved
how well you laid the trap
but it was laid so well
you WERE so powerful
overpowering even in your hour of need
and the damage was done
and what has been done can not be undone with tears or surgery
"the finger writes... ",

once before the fatal rendez-vous
at the battlefield
we heard the echo vibrating through our bones
the bones of potential combatants rattled
let me love you! .....again....
love me
and let me love you..... ....again.....
t'is the resolution of this pain and ridiculous stand off
love and let love ... again .. between equals
truly vulnerable
t'is the answer to this call
admit to one inch of vulnerability!

I can't let you in!
I can't let you in!
I can't let you in!
I can't let you in!
I can't let you in!
I can't let you in!
I can't let you in!

not now! not ever! never ! it was decreed!

why this cruel proximity then?
why has nature decreed this intractable proximity then?

(contemplation 3)

can you FORCE someone to be loved
... how hard?
can you force someone in need of love to be loved ..
to be loved?
the need for love, so overwhelming,
overwhelms the sufferer into refusal of all preludes!

where are the limits between loving and hurting?
between rape and sexuality?
between deviance and normality?
between incest, taboo and bestiality?
this fog makes cowards of us all
or rapists?
or automatons programmed
or cold vessels steeped in frigidity and custom

Oh for a potion that will bring forth the innermost reality?
a potion to bridge this calamity of normality
a potion to animate all dreams and fantasy
into tongue muscle bone and sinew
for to vibrate mother earth Isis anew
into the immortal dance of creation
and all vow a sacred pact inviolate

vulnerability is strength

vulnerability is the highest form of strength

vulnerability is the highest form of love

let them be forever banished from our midst all that will not take this vow
and can not but abuse vulnerability.....

the great fearless convulsed in terror
I can't let you in !
not now! not ever! never!
it was decreed
this was decreed ......
W H Y ? ? ?
.. by a blind man ....
.. in a rage ...
.. by an old man ..
.. in a panic ..

it was decreed ...
during the fatal battle of the Patriarchs
during the lost battle of the Matriarchs
.. by a frightened woman ..
in a guilt-ridden trance
it was decreed ...
.. by a scheming woman ..
at a glance
by a dead man
it was decreed


(Act the next the tragedy overtakes)

and there was no alternative left to you
but to thrash the whole world
obsessively ..
as punishment for intimations of tough tough mortality !

it was decreed
that love shall be made powerless
till it loses faith
it was decreed
the inner shall be separated from the outer
for to divide and rule
the yin or the yang never the twain shall meet
for to divide and rule
it was decreed
the blind shall lead the blind
and the divided shall lead the divided
into make-believe wholeness ...
and love shall be made powerless
until it looses faith


p.s. (a minor coda episode)

and at the scene of the crime
detectives found a scribbled note:
Urgent to all concerned and to all humans who(faded)
let it be known and beware (faded)
for I have discovered this document
before I was dried (faded)
it is of (faded) (faded)
(signature: P…… faded incomprehensible)
it is part of an action plan
it is old (faded)
perhaps as old as (faded) (faded)
by order of (unclear)

it was decreed that a dead man's head
shall be sewn onto a frightened woman's body
and that this unnatural thing shall rule instead of the paired Gods and Goddesses of old
Amon and Amaumet paired must be destroyed and erased by (faded)
it was decreed and agreed
after a terrible fight (faded) and the final treaty of (faded) (faded) submission of (faded)

that this agreed unna... all male (faded) artifice made all-power..... compromise of (faded)the all devouring male God (faded) (faded)
shall take male gender to the outside world (faded)
and (faded) and shall wear male clothes and rule forever over (faded)
it is agreed to disguise the (faded) (faded) (faded) (faded)
and rule
and rule

and decide the mind set
of all living things and rule
and rule
(faded) (faded)
faded) (faded) (faded)

even Isis the great (faded) acquiesced and signed(faded) so beware.. BEWARE (faded)

thus said the note
and naturally no one believed the macabre nonesense
sounded like a Frankenstein story or a Nosferato fantasy
and it was naturally relegated to the rubbish bin


but I Horus know the full content of this last note scribbled by Maat the Goddess of truth and justice in her death throes as they dragged her to perpetual imprisonment in the dread underworld together with Osiris.

at every sunrise and sun set
my rays tell the tale and decipher the script but fall on a deaf world
but hark one day the Sun shall not rise
as even the deaf shall be forced to lament and mourn the unjust demise of the primeval mother

Mozart and Osiris
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Reviewed by Jaclynn Huntington
Wow! I really got caught up in this one.
Reviewed by Bhuwan Thapaliya
Pofound write....This is excellent write....BHUWAN
Reviewed by E T Waldron
Tarak, I have never read a more beautifully expressed allegorical poem! I must say I'm in awe of your talent, which is surely a gift.I'm honored that you would read my humble offerings!Thank You!
Reviewed by nevine Al Seidi
Isis, in Egyptian mythology, is the Goddess of Life. Before creation, there was Nin, or the primordial ocean of chaos. Then, came a fire in heaven, known as Ra. This incident gave birth to Shu,or air and Tefnut, the moisture – together they created the earth, or Geb the God of earth and Nut, the Goddess of Sky. Geb and Nut shared a passion for each other that Ra , the cosmos, was jealous of their union and its potenial. Ra sent Shu to separate them, after them having a brief and passionate affair that gave birth to four children: Osiris and Seth ( males) and Isis and Nephthys (females).
Of the four children, Isis became the Goddess of life.Isis is the Mistress of the four elements: earth, water, wind and fire , the symbols to the powers of yin and yan as per Poet Tarek Hassan. Isis is referred to as the Mother Goddess whose blood nourishes the four corners of the world, hence: the Matriarch. From a union between Isis and Osiris, came Horus, The Living God and the Supreme God of the cosmos. “The Tragic Demise of the Matriarch” is a poem delivered on the tongue of Horus. Isis was skilled in the use of words that she could bring her dead husband Osiris back to life.Now, we can imagine how ‘tragic’ the demise of Isis is if she is the source of life itself and the source power that combats death!
Isis is also the Mistress of Magic and medicine. She is also the patron of women and children.In “The Tragic Demise of the Matriarch", Dr. Tarek Hassan sees the source of life, Isis, as dead and aloof, since she is not capable of living herself. Horus, the living God is actually living and more connected with life than his mother. The Goddess of Life is so divorced of living and her door is thus shut in the face of loving. In all her might and majesty, she is pictured as lying on a bed of worms and roses! The Poem is an allegory.

By humanizing Isis, Dr. Hassan succeeds in proving the loneliness of the Great. They, are so vulnerable when they are most powerful and there seems to be no way for us to connect with them, help them in their pain of loneliness because they will NOT be vulnerable. “the door” will remain shut in our faces when we try to reach out to love them. Furthermore, we are not allowed to love her, since we are not her equals. She must suffer the lack of love that dwindles her into her own death. She is in a weak position because she is rejecting the weakness of living things by standing above them as the Goddess! She, even in her hour of deepest need laid the trap consciously or unconsciously that shut her away from life and living, from loving and being loved. The poet even bewails:

"vulnerability is strength

vulnerability is the highest form of strength

vulnerability is the highest form of love."

But what Goddess can be vulnerable enough to empathize with this voice of Maat, the Goddess of Truth?

The greatness of this allegorical piece needs no further comment.
Thank you for sharing a masterpiece with us at the Den!

Nevine Al Seidi
Reviewed by nevine Al Seidi (Reader)
I enjoyed very much the vulnerability of the "Tragic Demise of the Matriarch". Just as you were writing About the 'Demise', I wrote: "At Yaru's Gate" - strange co-incidence, eh?
I will review your poem again; for now, let me dedicate At Yaru's Gate to you, on my demise!

They call me dead, though a gait I tread
Dozed and determined to Yaru’s gate
My heart is clear; what will I fear
Even if I came alone and late

I Did my share with the utmost care
My zeal never waned, my mind alert
Proudly I fought and justice sought
Now to the Hall of God, mitigate?

short time the Hall; shortly the Goal
Long time the earth, longer the wait
Now, I count fingers as soul lingers
About My own Rising Estate

Proud my sin, thus He would begin
To read my scroll of earthly fate
Oh, I loved too much and still as such
Indulged in disdain or hate

His eyes now fell on a word I tell
Light on my tongue and heavy the weight
Daily I said I was that God
I know and worship and dictate

I must confess I still know this
Is as true, as I would narrate.
And if there’s another Osiris
He must, then, be my godly state!

The Tragic Demise of the Matriarch tells me the physician has recovered ; this made my day!

Reviewed by Ted Sheridan (Reader)
This is as Andre has said one of a kind.
Reviewed by Andre Bendavi ben-YEHU

Asclepius could have healed Isis, and prevent her transfiguration…

– but then if he did, I wouldn't be privileged to read the

"Tragic demise of the Matriarch"; Erato wouldn’t be smiling as

Thalia tells her that Poet Tarek Ali Hassan keeps up with his creativity, and

Phoebus wouldn’t be so proud of his protégé, Physician and Poet.

It is a masterpiece; the "Tragic demise of the Matriarch" shall be on the pages

of the best of the twenty-first century’s Poetry.

Thank You for posting and sharing the "Tragic demise of the Matriarch".

Andre Emmanuel Bendavi ben-YEHU
Reviewed by Nicole Davis Vergara (Reader)
Wow Tarek now that was some in depth thought provoking very good reading!
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