Meet the creative Samaa Ahmed!

SM-h_O_ztamaa is a transnational/diasporic Pakistani artist and poet. She blogs about politics, pop-culture, and post-colonial feminism at and is the founder of ARTBOX Toronto.

What was your entrance into writing poetry and what made you want to stay?

I used to write a lot of poetry growing up, especially when I was an angsty teenager. It was such a great way for me to get my feelings out, and although it was really melodramatic stuff, I enjoy re-reading it and appreciate how productive of a release it was. After a really long gap, I started writing poetry again through Outburst in October 2015.

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(Samaa is one of our performers at “Volume: Sisters Make Noise” happening on May 25th! Don’t miss out! Reserve your tickets HERE)

Meet the brilliant and hilarious Seema

Seema is a Muslim daughter who likes watching Food Network shows with her sisters and feeling a sense of accomplishment after returning things to stores. She constantly thinks about how her future Wikipedia page entry will come across. She also has a tendency to not finish thin


What was your entrance into writing poetry and what made you want to stay?

I was one of those people who hated poetry with a passion. In school, we’d read e.e. cummings and I would just get so frustrated at how much guessing we all had to do to “get it” and how we were taught that there was always a right answer as to what the poem was about. Then I remember listening to this video, I think it was William Carlos Williams who basically said that poems a lot of the time don’t make sense, but that they are meant to be read aloud and felt more than anything. Ever since then, I loved poetry and saw the whole genre in a different way. The poems I love communicate something that typically can’t be explained, but somehow the poet would find just the right string of words to pull at your heart strings. It’s so hard to do a human experience justice with language, but poetry can do that.

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(Seema is one of our performers at “Volume: Sisters Make Noise” happening on May 25th! Don’t miss out! Reserve your tickets HERE)

Outburst Action: Take Back the Night Sign & Noise Maker Jam

On September 16th join Outburst! Action to create signs & noise makers in preparation for Take Back the Night on Sept 20th. This is a protest and evening event to address violence in the lives of women. This year’s theme 2014 “DECOLONIZING FEMINISM GLOBALLY: FROM TURTLE ISLAND TO PALESTINE. It includes a community fair, rally with community-based performers, speakers and a march. It also includes a community dinner, childcare and media presence. 

Facebook event :

make me scream the right way

Outburst will be providing poster paper, art supplies & snacks to help you create your own message of healing, resistance & hope for transformative change. Join us! Email to register.

All available on request 

  • Space is wheel chair accessible & scent free
  • Childcare (48 hours),
  • TTC
  • language interpretation (including ASL with five day)

More about Take Back the Night

RALLY 6:30PM-8:30PM
MARCH 8:30PM-9:30Pm

For more information contact
Grissel Orellana
416-597-1171 Ext.228

Hey FIBA LIFT the Ban on Hijab & other Religious Wear for Professional & Competitive Basketball Players

On Wednesday August 27th the International Basketball Federation will be meeting to decide if they are going to lift the ban religious wear Ariticle We urge our Outburst Fam to reach out to FIBA and let them know the impact of this ban. Below is a sample letter you can use as well as images that speak to our #right2wear.You can directly email here: also tweet  @FIBA #right2wear #lifthijabban
President of FIBA – International Basketball FederationRoute Suisse 5 – P.O Box 29
1295 Mies – SwitzerlandDear Yvan MaininiI am writing to express my appreciation that FIBA considering lifting the ban Article 4.4.2 o on head coverings, i.e. the hijab for basketball players.  I believe it is offensive and discriminatory.There is nothing about the hijab, particularly in the sport-friendly version that is widely available now i.e. Resporton, that poses no more of an inherent threat to physical safety than other articles of clothing. Moreover, although this rule doesn’t explicitly single out Muslims, it affects Muslim women disproportionately.  For Muslim women who believe that the headscarf is a religious requirement, this rule asks them to choose between following their religion and playing basketball, which is not a choice that religious women of most other faiths have to make.  FIBA needs to consider the unequal implications of its rules, and to stop policing the clothing that some Muslim players are wearing.

For many girls and women, playing sports is a way of staying healthy, building self-esteem, and being part of a strong community.  The opportunity to participate in organised sports represents more than just an occasional meet-up to play ball; for many people, it is also plays a vital role in their health and sense of self and community.

This is also about more than isolated incidents affecting only a few players.  Many exceptional aspiring basketball stars such as Bilqis Abdul-Qaadir, who have dreamed of a flourishing future as a professional basketball player, will have their dreams cut short due to the FIBA ban.

There are many examples of sports events where participants wear hijab without incident.  FIBA, another international sports organization lifted their ban and now welcome players who wear the hijab.  The 2012 Olympics featured a number women who competed wearing the hijab including Wojdan Shaherkani, Noor Hussain Al-Malki, Tahmina Kohistani, Shinoona Salah al-Habsi, Fatima Sulaiman Dahman. Daily throughout the world girls and women are wearing hijab participating in a wide range of sports including basketball, fencing, Australian football, weightlifting, and boxing.

I am tired of everyone – sports institutions, governments, families, religious scholars, the justice system, our peers – being obsessed with what Muslim women wear.  Muslim women and girls have the right to choose how we outwardly express our faith and religion. Muslim women have the right to wear what we please. FIBA needs to get out of our wardrobes and let women play.