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Words Without Borders: An Evening of Poetry and Spoken Word


Event Status

‘Poetry is like a bird,’ the Russian poet Yevgeny Yevtushenko famously said. ‘It ignores all frontiers.’

People whose lives have been governed by borders often find solace in the freedom of artistic expression. Join us for an evening of poetry and spoken word, performed by members of Australia’s refugee communities.

Curated by Manal Younus, the celebrated Eritrean storyteller who now calls South Australia home, this special online event will showcase the talents and stories of brilliant poets from across the country. Hear from emerging and established artists, connecting from their homes to yours, as they share words of both freedom and exile.

Hosted by Younus, with Lujayn Hourani, Hani Abdile, Flora Chol and Awale Ahmed.

Presented in partnership with Refugee Council of Australia.

Watch this event on this page.


Manal Younus

Manal Younus is an South Australian based freelance storyteller from Eritrea who believes that language and stories are the very fabric of our existence. Using her writing and performance, Manal explores different aspects of life from perseverance, identity, travel and truth. She has spoken and perf... Read more

Lujayn Hourani

Lujayn Hourani is a Palestinian writer, editor, and arts worker based in Naarm. Their practice uses little stories to ask and answer big questions. Lujayn has been published in Overland, Meanjin, The Lifted Brow, Going Down Swinging, and Voiceworks among others. ... Read more

Flora A Chol

Flora Chol Is Melbourne based South Sudanese writer, Poet and activist. Flora migrated to Australia with her mother, brothers and sister in 2003. Flora describes herself as ‘an earthly black woman writing in a stream of literary consciousness’. In May 2019 Flora published her debut a Poetic Anth... Read more

Hani Abdile

Hani Abdile is a writer and spoken word poet who fled the civil war in Somalia at 16, forced to leave her family behind. She made her way to Australian waters by boat and was detained on Christmas Island. Hani is author of I Will Rise, an honorary member of PEN International, and a lead writer for ... Read more

Awale Ahmed

Awale Ahmed is a multilingual writer and storyteller who shares stories through poetry. Born in Somalia, he grew up in the Middle East and recently migrated to Australia. He firmly believes that artists are the true guardians of our creativity, childhood spirit and imagination. An advocate for socia... Read more

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