poetry

Without poetic seed there won’t be prose. The elaborate network of trunks, branches, twigs, flowers, fruits and leaves is nothing but a commentary on the small poetic seed. So all ye wannabe writers, nurture the poet in you, who understands the value of pause in life, who moves slowly to watch everything, sight and smell everything. Brushstrokes of poetry softly touch the soul without disrupting its restful muse and bring out the nuggets of love, compassion, harmony and peace.

Holy Harlots

Yamuna!

A black, toxic, putrefied nullah.

Cow!

A sewage-eating big pig

surviving on garbage dumps.

Two holy mothers turned harlots

in this age of Kaliyuga!

Delhi, meanwhile, pumps

more pride in its polluted lungs.

On stinking sewage-layered banks,

The skinny cow grazes on

noxious weeds and poisoned shrubbery,

Its beneficent, teary eyes

ogle at the human-industrial waste

mocking and mirthing over Yamuna’s sighs.

Who needs a holy bath now and cow’s blessings?

Two pillars of faith

now crumble down to pieces, 

Any listeners to their dismantling shrieks?

Holy Touch!

With softly pining majesty, silence sings a song,
Shadows grow long,
Her soft fingers brace my face
and go along a tears trace.
Delicate tip of her finger bears the jewel,
The tear that would have been lost as salt on my face.

                                                    Phoenix

In the fire of my passion

people say I will burn my wings,

And then I will not be able to fly,

How mischievously society takes a dig sly

at those who dare to be different,

For rutted path’s stranglehold is luring,

doling out short-cuts aiming massive gains,–

The ordinary paths avoiding the penanceful pains.

Burn I’ll myself in my own fire

to ashes and ambers,

Or the inferno will bake the skill raw

To turn gold in my soul’s chambers,

Either ashes or gold—

Though the path full of miseries untold,

But even this treacherousness has exceptional charms,

Its forlorn sand is pregnant with virginal solitude,

Its uncluttered loneliness, a mine full of possibilities!

Far away from the crowd

How brilliantly shines that prospect!

The solitary walkers on this path

either die a lonely, ignominious death,

To become the unencumbered particles of its ungutted earth,

Or if somebody carries through the desert,

He arrives at an oasis of gold,

where the creative bliss takes him in charming fold.

These sufferings might turn me into ashes

or turn me into gold,

If the ash is my fate

then I should not hate

my passion’s flame,

For I turned out to be a horse lame

that lined up for the toughest race,

Or with inferno lurking on my face

I play with the fire

and make it my mistress to sire

the golden-winged off-springs;

my consummation signs with the infernal houri,

That wedding night’s taming with creative fury.

The moth is aware of fire’s fury,

Still it doesn’t hover

around a desirous flower’s utility,

With passionate ambers smoldering in its guts,

It goes for a dazzling display around fire;

Its perilous, exciting, flirtatious orbit around the glow,

And the flame laying snares for the deadly blow,

Yet with intoxicated zeal

nearer and nearer it comes to kiss and feel

that finest nectar hidden behind the fiery eyes:

The honey sweeter than any flower for which a worldly honey-bee dies.

Fuelled and fired by every ounce of its instinct

it buzzes around with ecstatic swirls,

It lives life thousand times more

than the ones lured by worldly flower’s lore,

Even its death isn’t just painful plights,

It is merely the pinnacle of its

gradually graduating love flights,

And when it meets its end that explosion of its flesh

is the acme of its fiery passion.

Likewise, I’m the helpless satellite

of the sun of my art,

Hardest I might try,

but from it I can’t part,

Its my life and source of light,

Without it everything is a blind flight

and nothing of purpose in sight,

Hovering around my inspirational sun

is the only form of my fun,

Even if it means the final

crashlanding into the fiery ball,

For the artist it is still a regally carpeted hall.

MIRAGE

How possessed the show of life floats away!

Self-absorbed and self-satiating eyes

perpetually ogling at that last ray,

Shines which with trayful of exceptional mundanities,

delicious crumbs and specks of pleasant trivialities,–

Prize’s lesser essence exaggerated manifold,

How deceiving has’n this mirage since times untold!

The rioting mob, meanwhile, creating a stampede and storm—

Thirsty, hungry, eating and breathing sand,

Trying to outpace each other

to reach that coveted oasis land,

where the mirageful sweet speck lies

and the supposed spring of will never dries.

God created us to walk brotherly

on the lush green pastures hand-in-hand,

But we take the path lost in treacherous sand

to out-run each other,

Leaving each other dying

and lying to be buried under those sand dunes,

So much we lose and force others to lose

while running to catch those boons,

Blindly we trample orchids

to catch up with the call by those sandy sighs,

And see, so many die with sand in mouth and eyes!

See that fellow huffing and puffing like an animal

going after that ever-escaping destination,

Like an oxen sweating out the precious drops

to drain out even the last ounces of humanity

from those strained innards,–

The orchid inside suffers a drought,

Aah! How valiantly he fought,

But unfortunately always had’n taking unnecessary shot,

And then the chase became unbearably hot,

Desire’s hallucination sparkles in his eyes as the loser’s dot.

Ever pretending to kow-tow the pious injunctions,

most often we do the opposite,

How coquettishly we keep God

unaware of our motives true!

The characters outsmarting the creator’s real hue,

Betraying thus God and trampling orchards,

whose seeds He planted,

we move ahead,

Unaware the spirit is already dead,

And the title deed with the creator

torn and tattered to its last thread,

Then we go out without any dread

and tread over each other in blind race,

Spit each other in the face

to stop (or made to stop) finally at a place,

where there isn’t those presumptions’ single trace.

Highway Murder

Listen you all, men and nature!

They are killing me!

As the iron hisses, and kisses

across the rings of my age,

I stand benumbed in daze,

This end was not supposed to come so soon,

Wasn’t I fulfilling all the duties assigned to me,

entitling me another wintery full moon?

In self-imposed anesthesia

I just feel the saw’s butchering

into my bloodless flesh in my guts,

There is no blood in me

to give the evidence of a murder,

The sanguine darkness of my mass

is worth only stone for you.

On this hazily sun-lit winter noon,

The hounds are around me,

My murder has been sanctioned

by the state authorities!

For decades I stood for both nature and man,

During those beautiful days

this road was a simple friend

leading to common journeys and destinations,

Now it becomes a foe and highway

leading to some illustrious ray,

And I become redundant old,

standing in the way of progress

with my few square-feet of foot-hold.

If a healthy mass like me is no life;

no more than a mile-stone,

I hope to tell my murder story

till the axes, scythes and saws

send my tiniest of branches to be turned to ashes.

We trees never wince with pain

as your axes spray around chips of our flesh,

I understand we had equal rights

till mankind was just part of nature,      

Now this saw going deeper and deeper

into my bloodless guts,

reminds me of our inevitable fate,–

Every tree on earth now has a deadly date

with the greedy most, treacherous and unforgiving mate.   

They know that I’m massive and big,

So they are afraid of my fall,

Haa! The cowards!

They don’t know, while they rob me

of my few square feet of space on earth,

My saplings are still doling out oxygen

under this winter sun,

Even my murder can’t change me

because I’m helpless due to my nature.

Now the saw has gone sufficiently deep,

And I get some signs of that eternal sleep,

I feel some unbearable pain in my painless mass,

For death is death after all,

Hope you will understand!

Like hangman’s noose, thick hemp ropes

are tied to direct my fall,

From a safe distance, the tractors pull

to bring down this wooden bull,

And now I feel the pain

as cleavage breaks through that portion

still holding me to my mother earth,

From softest saplings to rock hard tissues

my whole body is panicked,

Saplings are crying like purely innocent children,

Hardest of trunk tissues are shamelessly crying

like battle hard, handsome soldiers after losing a battle,

But who cares!

This big snapping sound is my death cry,

And I fall with a thud,

Yes, man you win,

I’m dead before I thought I will!  

SPRING SEEDS

⋯and now the April has also gone,

Where are the seeds that I’d sown?

Like a ploughman I worked

in the summer almost melting bones,

Removed the stones,

Rattled which the spirit like someone

caught in desert’s sandy moans.

Then during winter my toil lit up a bonfire

amidst blinding blizzards and nature’s icy deeds,

These were my spring seeds,

embedded, impregnated in earth through my earthy deeds,

Spring seeds meant to

conceive, germinate, grow, ripe, flower and fructify,

But the spring came and went with a sad sigh,

Sorrows in my barren fields hit another high,

My spring seeds thus lost,

And me the farmer standing forlorn

without that harvest of which I used to boast,

Now the scorching May sun

beats down the dusty land with a fiery pun,

Peasant and his field thus stand mute,

Almost complete has’n the plunder and loot,

To gallows was sent my crop,

The hangman just mechanically pulled

the handle at the hanky’s drop,

Efforts’ dead body hangs from that noose,

And even the last strains of

faith, will power and hope getting loose.

People say that too much is my browbeat,

‘Why not clear another stony plot

to get something to eat?’

Perhaps they don’t realize

the blind, illogical passion’s treatise

which I wrote over stones with a pure soul,

Impractical, insane I stand out

with cracks and brain’s hole,

How could I expect fruits from this very plot?

And now I stare at the nullifying dot,

The desert storm meanwhile hisses with its lust hot,

Seeds have most probably been killed,

Aah, with amazing precision

the Goddess of infertility drilled!

While the songs of my fertile efforts in a chorus trilled,

But She has’n successful in its swipe,

Its blinding gung-ho and macabrous hype,

Lolloping its greedy tongue to

dejuice and deflower everything ripe,

Now I lay my back against a

hard, hot, unshaded rock,

My weariness, fatigue and torture

put me in a sleepy dock,  

In that short uneasy sleep

I get some relief from the pain of this injury deep,

A luxuriant crop I see in my dream

and nearby gurgling goes a stream.  

The Invisible, Untouched Debris

A painful churning goes on

in the deep, deep recesses mine,

Outwardly I manage to look well and fine.

On my skin sweat beads shine,

These tiny outpours of my desperation

are the struggling vestiges of battles

that I failed to win.

There is a salty sea of sufferings inside,

which the clothing and the mask hide,–

The sea of tears accumulated from yores,

Here mournful, tragic waves strike

the forlorn sand on gloomy shores,

There were deep, hollow pits and spaces

that could have’n easily filled up with

sweet freshwaters and lifeful braces,

But that wasn’t to be,

Rather the tears of endless traumas

made up the sorrowful sea,

Outwardly I just tread on the ground,

And even try to dance

to the social puppetry and civilized sound,

But in the deep recesses of the sea of my being

sharks shred the flesh like the bloodiest of hound,

Thousands of leeches suck the soul’s blood,

And the salty sea gets another torrential flood,

Surrounded by such deadly gloomy waters,

My being’s lofty peaks

shudder with protesting shrieks,

In those vales, precipitation born of miseries

sends down dark showers,

Creating mudslides and breaking stones

from the lofty towers,

Deep echoes of this sea’s triumphant storms

go rumbling through the inner being,

Rains, floods, earthquakes

storm the soul’s citadel,

Their combined fury unleashes mud and sleaze,

Carries which the ensnaring breeze

towards the salty sea of gloom,

Even though outwardly I manage to

keep up some bloom,

But the tremors from inside

reach new high day by day,

And the afraid soul runs helter-skelter

to find some solacing ray

that might say

a valiant nay

to the horrible avalanche pouncing on my soul,

But unmindfully the rocks of

my ideas and principles fatally slide,

and painfully the debris glide

towards the salty sea.

If the erosion from inside

goes on like this,

while I try to maintain the appearance

worth a lady’s kiss,

Then it will leave a huge

cavern overlooking the sea,

Collapse it will then,

And that shiny façade and that wren

will crash with its glittering,

broken eyeglasses still facing the sky,

With the last imprint of final worldly

shot with a cry,

What difference will it make then?

Perhaps, people will still

shed tears over the shiny shell,

And muse,

‘He didn’t die as a broken man.

He was as starry as anyone can.’

Their analysis will just

mull over the debris shiny,

But nobody will give solace

to the agonic corrosion going inside,

Because those who couldn’t

see it while I was alive,

How can they now

when I take the final dive?

 Obituary lines will be written

on those broken shiny shards;–

Farcical symbols of my worldly struggle

and puny success,

While the real struggle

thousand times valorous remains unsung,

For it lies scattered at the lowest rung,

What foolhardiness!

Soul’s sanctum-sanctorium

remains in deadly pals,

while they kiss only the temple’s

outer walls.

Golden Noose

With that invisible love story

tied with an unseen cord

to my tightly sewn lips,

Let me kiss the last drops of her memory

from the cup still brimming

with her image.

The last spiritual door

opening finally for His light,

Preparing for something more,

somewhere in some other world and form,

Where down the distanceless

space-time continuum

lies the timeless face of an

untold, unrequited love tale.

The tiny waves of breathing

can now no longer carry the boat of life,

Last moment’s stormy seizure

quickly subdues the feeble efforts to stay afloat,

And down goes the body,

Hanged by the cord

of a painful love story that was never told.

The Defeated King

The night was very long

and all moments thronged

with frustration, angst and despair,

The darkest faces yelled for anyone to dare.

Like a terribly lynched mule

sluggered away the day

without bringing a new ray,

Now, the night’s long sinewy hairs

cast ghastly shadow over the battlefield lost,

And battle scars get bandaged with frost.

A cumbersome long-long day

when his efforts got butchered

by some mysterious force’s riotous ray,

Now stars shine on darkness’ face;

Like tiny lamps they twinkle from

some fallen hero’s mace

and point to hope and smile

somewhere still holding onto tiniest of trace,

Their poking raylets brace

the frozen blood around scars,

‘The day will come’, they say,

‘and the next sun will light up a new ray!’

‘You will then forget these days dark

and still fearsome nights with a terrible hark!’

The wounded, handsome soldier’s hands

clenched a fistful of earth all blood-soiled,

There were more moments to be toiled,

Somewhere fire in his blood still boiled,

The enemy’ll return in a couple of hours,

‘Let me see how many heads my club covers!’

For the mace handle his hands fumbled,

But once again his feet stumbled

and he fell down,

But that effort’s majesty shone on his face,

Succumbed he then to his injuries and died,

Aha! Immortal was that last shot of pride,

It was found frozen on his face

when the victorious hound

arrived later on the trophy’s trace.

Invisible Scars

Too often I’ve stumbled, staggered

and fallen headlong,

Cuts and wounds mercilessly throng

the bodily stranglehold mine,

Deep fissures reach

where the soul’s diamonds shine;

Injuries so deep—

Aaah! Invisible, invincible dragnet’s richest reap.

Nobody sees the gaping holes in my spirit,

Here the destiny’s blind force

so venomously hit!

God!  Why is it that deepest scars

are invisible to the society’s eyes?

Why remain unnoticed

cuts and wounds of such mammoth size?

Injuries like deepest trenches on sea’s bosom,

Above on the surface

the worldly water waves normally,

Below the scars lurk dreadfully

and darkest of dark roam

in the gloomy, depthless womb.

I, the perpetual peasant,

Always engaged in the sacred labor duty,

While the foe doing

its undoing spadework continuously,         

Its ensnaring checkerwork grinning cunningly,

I meanwhile rise up again

to get some littlest bit of gain,

Alas, my mountainously bulky efforts

only but go haywire!

Not even a little mice I find,

And sorrowfully the tiny lamp goes blind,

The invisible scars

get enlarged and multiplied, of course,

But not even a single eye

sees the bloody bath and the loss!

Last Hideout

Here I sit in my cold, secluded corner

and take stock of the

pleasant profanities scattered around,

The world basking in its

majestic, unholy mundanities,

while the unhindered morality singing unbound.

The corner with its stagnant stench

and mucking air;

where my tortured holy-self lie,

Cruelly contriving world meanwhile tempts,

‘Why thou become the fodder of game fair?

Son, now have an unfair try!’

‘Succeed thou will,

the moment thou unshackle

thyself of poor righteousness!

This load will always find you a loser,

for too old is now the history of uprightness!’

And I shiver and snivel

in my little, dark hole

to keep the little flicker going,

The dark-race however gets

perpetually stormy and cries,

‘Let’s us see! How long you’ll keep rowing?’

Too small is the boat which carries me

across this deadly sea,

Big waves pound from all sides

and each crest devilishly neigh.

How foolish of me

not to surrender to the cozy

seduction by the compromising short-cut!

Cut after cut they give me

to break open my little hutment

whose wispy door is bravely shut.

Passes as the time,

graver still become the urgency to

drag me out of my hiding hole,

Too far and wide is the

swash of ‘only feasible game’

in which all must play a survival role.

God! Let me see how long I can cling

to my altar-like holy den,

But times are really dark

and the moment will surely come,

The little lamp will go blind then⋯

Birth

This tiny flower

becoming a fruit;–

Transformation of this

once petalous soot:

Its beauty and color

now turning into a tiny vase,

Old flower and the infant fruit

transmixing for nature’s laws.

Flower’s beauty being sacrificed

at the fruity altar,

The Goddess of fruits

watches this pleasant hatching from far,

She muses with a midwifery glee,

Sings then a playful lullaby for the

fruitling in the flower’s womb,

Oh! How glittery is this little

juicy lad in the petalous tomb.

So, the soft flowery curls

take a hard, fruity mould,

The petals bold

vanish into juicy, hard fold.

Love Storm

When love smiles like a rose,

some famished heart gets a dose,

Cupid’s arrow breaks the shackles

and that unemotional, hard crust crackles.

A pumping machine is heart no longer,

as the softest turbulence gets stormily stronger,

Love-storm knocks at the rugged coastline,

There for a new dawn, several suns shine.

The Love like a flower

sways to sizzling dew-shower,

Dew-drenched, a new life sizzles,

and moments rejuvenate in precious drizzle.

The heart dancing in the rain,

Pleasant madness; nothing to gain!

Sheer abundance of all giving,

Gain-lorn is no longer the being.

Heart’s orchard in full bloom,

Archaic-old now seems that gloom,

Brightly starry is the night,

Self-esteem soars to loftiest height,

And when the storm ebbs out,

like a panicked fish heart’s angels shout,

‘Oh, thou uncertain tide,

when will thou again arrive with thy sweep wide?’

The Game

How hard and how long

I take to reach near

the summit of my hardworked hill,

All battered and bruised,

final steps I still try,

Above, the peak brags its highness,

while the caterpillar’s soul doth cry:

‘Yonder, still uphill sweet cups lie!’

My eyes ogle at the peak,

And heart ready to render

a full-throated victorious shriek, 

But eyes then see

the hard taskmaster’s glee,

Awaits who there to teach

that solacing sips are still out of reach.

Oh! Its quick ascendancies!

Always galloping ahead

with mammoth mirth in hand,

It is always the first

to quench its thirst

from the cup at the crest,

Then uproariously beats its breast:   

‘There lies another one!

Pal, let’s get promptly begun!’

Oofs, its insatiable thirst!

It claims exulting victory every time,

And I get my weeping, mediocre rhyme. 

1412TH Toy

So they are clapping for their achievement!

They are celebrating the 1412th tiger in this land

where my forefather roamed to make legends.

But before they take all the credit

for saving my species,

Let me—a mere skinny kitten—clarify:

A tiger born in a zoo is no tiger!

An animal opening its eyes for the first time

among self-vaunting humans is no animal,

It’s a mere flesh and blood toy

conceived by semi-dark conscience

and mechanical techniques.

No man! No I’m no tiger!

I’m just a tiny means to allow you mighty

people to get some solace,

The genes in me have been broken

through your rampages across my lands,

You people know me as a mighty

hunter galloping after my prey,

And here in the confines of this cage

My parents forgot that they were tigers,

Your cages just define we poor animals

Just as poor dependents,

The showcase items for your kids,

To be hooted at,

To be laughed at,

To be mocked at,

No man no! I am no tiger!

I’m just a proof of your outgrowing

your shoes,

What tiger is a tiger that is tame,

It hangs down its tail in shame,

Yes man, you win!

And I bear the burden of being a tiger,

even though my genes have been changed!

Kiss of Death

Life! My purest kisses on your lips

were the honest stamps of

genuine love and loyalty,

I was in supremely pure love,

Even though my delicate, soft smooches

were returned by you as bleeding bites,

I always smiled,

ascending higher and higher to loftiest  delights.

Each moment found me unprecedently crazy,

infatuated and caught in the sweet

tentacles  of unreined, unrestrained love,

You but always bit back more viciously,

Oh thou heartless seductress!

Taking the poison as sweetest honey,

with bleeding lips I always smiled,

Cuts after cuts you gave,

even before the previous blood dried.

You only sucked,

I just gave rosy hues to you,

and you returned deadly blue,

Still smile and sweetness never

left my bloody lips,

How crazily I shed those lifeful drips!

Blindly I surrendered my being before you,

And you tricked me,

for I always saw life in that deadly hue.

Greedily gasping with venomous sighs and winner’s hiss,

You now approach with that final kiss

to deprive me of final breaths,

Life! Aren’t you ashamed of cheating someone

who perhaps loved you the most?

Flying Kiss

  In these slumberous vales

and shy, silent dales,

My spirit escapes the clutch-hold

of my confined being,

And ecstatically saunters away

to those snow-melting peaks,

where the March sun breastfeeds

many a tiny rivulets,

Like a helpless, rooted palm,

I assuage myself and put balm

on my constricted conscience,

Cold sighs I vent out,

 as the pinnacled majesty winks

from far with a seductive pout,

And my forlorn spirit runs amuck

and flies to kiss those

coyly surrendering, shining crystals,–

Away, away where rock’s snobby

ego melts maternally!

A Plump Hatch, and Tiny Catch

The day rose

after that stand-still, dark pause,

Like an infant’s mysterious muse,

pinkish horizon took shape

with dreams huge.

Warmth and light fastly spread,

Light prevailed and darkness retreated

with an uncharacteristic dread,

Shadows first lengthened

and then shrank to become bold;

clung firmly to get noontime foothold.

With crowning majesty,

the moments moved towards the zenith,

Everything warmed for brightest glory,

With a firmly straight venture

written was that glorious story,

Roses, roses all the way,

Endless seemed that ray,

Meanwhile the pendulum

swung the other way,

During the lazy afternoon’s lugubrious sway,

shadows silently crept away,

In that slumberous silence,

many a leaves gave away

to the titillating pulls of

mother earth’s gravity song,

Shadows panicked and slowly-slowly

ebbed away to become long,

The other horizon now crimson and red,

It sprayed colors sad,

Lolloping tongues of its funeral fury,

firmed up like death sentencing jury,

Tired voices, slow steps, ebbing strength:

The day that had risen

with such pomp and show,

It was wiped away after that

feeble twilighty ‘no’ .

Criminal Moment

There were times

and there would be times,

But endless is the moment

that still chimes

with the evil song and music of a crime,

A crime when it plucked a life

like a thief sneaking away with last breath

amidst heartbeats missing their mark

imperiled by that chaos and strife.

I bear witness against that murderous moment,

when I was left fatherless and

put on an unprotected plane like never before,

Like a boatman cast away

countless treacherous miles from the shore;

Like a pariah face

Bumping against a slammed, shut door.

No a fatherless being can’t be

the same anymore,

Moments will come

and moments will go,

But the steely vessel of my being                                    

is almost cut to depth by that perilous hoe.

Betrayal

Life! You are plainly a treacherous friend,

He loved you more than himself,

Nurtured you with the most potent,

pious and vigorous juices of innocent childhood;

Fattened thy fibers

with the impassioned heartbeats of youth;

Increased the aura around your hallowed head

through graceful wisdom and talks of ripening age.

He made you the charming queen of his dreams,

With decades of love and toil,

he prepared a glittering palace for you,

And then you eloped,

Eloped with dark-winged shadows of death,

You crazy one!

Right from the start you were in

blind love with the angels of death.

Yet all he did was to love you,

Love you from the core of his soul.

Blossomed he a flower

that was always love-lorn for the

ghastly clutch  from the other world,

Now, here lies your lover’s corpse

and you make merry with your evil playmate,

hidden in the darkest chambers.

Spring Rose

Spring rose!

Pampered by nights’ dewy dose

your full-lipped pout

invites stingy, sucking bites

from black bee, the lout!

You but mind it not

and give fresh flashes and fragrant shot,

Your lover’s impassioned gasps hot,

shake you up like a storm tossing a boat,

You but still smile,

Pure, unstinted, without any guile!

You have the softest, petalous lips,

And like a rapist he just sips

the feminine juices of your blood,

You rosy red and he black,

His crazy, blind passion lets loose a flood,

His darkish, sweating, contorted face,

How murderously he responds

to your innocent, breezy grace!

Greedily he goes on,

Those fiery grunts, subduing your softest moan,

And reaching the dangerous peaks

where his unquenchable thirst shrieks,

The plunderer flies away!

Away! Where more fresh faces sway,

You but still smile,

His love bites prominent on your lovely face,

Aha, undefeatable is this grace!

Vandalized Rose

Full moon night and this pond!

The sky flaunts its full-faced beauty,

The pond too kisses

the mirage, the reflection!

Love-lorn, the gentlest waves

caress the lovely, tricky mirage,

Ducks quack!

From the shore-side bushes

a bird suddenly goes for a night song,

With expert ease

and like nimblest breeze

suddenly a pack of night-fliers arrives,

And the hawks go for a hearty feast,

for every hungry belly is a beast,

Sharp talons, strong beaks, sturdy wings,

The air with pugnacity sings,

They swoop down on the soft delicacies

enjoying the soft bedspread  on ripply waves,

That lotus too bears a talon scar,

The birds of prey swoop down for one-sided war,

Soft flesh; rock hard claws,

How easily soft life’s skin saws!

There is blood, noise and shrieks,

This softest of solitude creaks

And breaks down  in the tight, lusty embrace of the storm,

A piece of black cloud  takes the milky full-face

in its dark, mating brace,

There is darkness, blood, bites and noise,

Those dreamful moments lost of their poise!

Now, the oblivious cloud,

free of its impassioned hinges,

flies away, surrendered to the winds,

The sad beauty smiles again,

And throws its tired, tamed milkiness

on this torn serenity and pause,

lying here like a vandalized rose!

Illustrious Sun

He was great in his own ways,

A small but substantial sun

brilliantly scattering its rays

across his being’s orbit,

We the planets majestically circling,

Sourced by him and always in debit,

He was fiery

and spun on his axis with copious fury,

His eyes had dreams,

Dreams of all of us becoming stars,

But fate was always at wars,

In the infinite and mysterious cosmic gloom

disposals were always in full bloom,

He and the family spun,

The supreme intelligence had pun for a fun.

We had our fire storms

and titillating, exciting bumps and smooth rides

in our small cozy orbits,

The burning core of his being

sucked fuel from the happiness born of

big dreams of his planets becoming stars,

But dreams are what?

May be they are the pyres in disguise!

In his own fire he collapsed,

From a distance the chunks of his own body

saw him being consumed by the same fiery tongues

that had zealously chorused his dreams,

There was an explosion,

His pieces were blown into

the depthless void of eternity,

And we the plants,

Shook, sobbed, stopped;

fatherless in our cradling orbits,

With horror and sorrow

we watched the cataclysmic fire,

Then helplessly driven by cosmic forces,

we were carried ahead by time’s horses.

A Moment Lives, Dies, Becomes Immortal

A dead mouse lies,

Forlornly the April air sighs,

Water in a nearby puddle dries,

A dung-beetle hurriedly tries

to roll its trophy; take home as pies.

There on the infinite, blue calm of the skies,

an eagle air-dives for ecstatic highs,

With death, decay and destruction,

its hunter instinct vies,

From the faded, sunburnt petals of that flower,

the short spring says byes.

Lower and lower the hunter comes,

It eyes the humble measles

a former life has still to offer,

Driven by the expert dynamics of its airy skill,

It goes for the carcass’ kill,

Triumphantly it ascends,

The trophy held in its talons,

A sparrow chirps as if crying of murder,

Another bird sounds applauding,

A curious mix:

The nature in qualityless, impersonal fluid.

Unseenly a chapter is closed,

The slumberous panorama, meanwhile, dozed.

  Tryst with Destiny  

To be popular and great

is the biggest bait,

So many of us miss the charming date

to get a favorable alliance

between hard work and fate,

Alas but its always too late

by the time journey comes to a sudden halt,

The bubble then bursts,

Names and dates turn to ashes,

Unconcerned world goes on

as usual with pompous dashes,

As soon as you become past,

Redundant thy memories turn really fast,

Still we surrender to the bait,

May be its just our inevitable, humble fate.

Lip-kissed Lies

Your lip-kissed lies are

the diamonds of truth for me,

Forgive me my blindness;

Lost in your dream, reality I cannot see!

The Princess

Many-many full moons ago,

There was a beautiful princess

in a tiny, paradisiacal hill state,

Surrounded by nature’s blooms great

her beauty was ever-touching new scales,

Nature spread across far-flung wild trails

sang songs of her majestic beauty,

Slowly-slowly it did its duty

to spread around the tales of her charms,

For miles and miles

her fame could measure distance in arms,

Reached it the ears of a prince far,

whose kingdom had’n at war

with her father’s,

And lo! Enough bravado this prince gathers

to set out to look at that famed face,

Seemed he then a futile chaser

running after destiny in a tragic race,

Lovely wild flowers kept on giving her trace,

Untamed breeze came to brace

his young heart and brave, soldierly chest,

Moved he ahead without rest,

After months-long sufferings in the ravines,

he found himself where her star shines,

Wandered he in her kingdom in impersonation,

for so antagonistic was the air in this nation.

Her fame spread more from the mouth’s word,

Too precious was this bird

to be ogled by too many eyes,

So desperately he tries

to give solace to his aching eyes,

His pining heart gave suffering, cold sighs,

Then chance showered its bloom

and gone was his heart’s gloom,

It was a full moon night

and moon was lit at its fairest bright,

The princess went for a boat ride

in the marvelously calm lake,

His heart shook with a thunderous heart-quake

as he stealthily waited in the shoreline foliage,

Every passing moment gave a new courage,

He was just above

the princess’ safe, secret bathing ghat of marble sleek,

This white monument gleamed

exotically in the panorama bleak,

Arrived her boat then with her giggling maidens,

His heart was now achingly struggling

against his broad chest,

In filigreed finery she was dressed,

In silent majesty she put her adorable feet

on the gleaming, cool facade by the waterside,

Waves rippled through him with a coquettish chide,

Her hallowed figure glowed distinctly

among her helping ladies,

And before he could think anything,

stony become his whole being,

Her finery no longer covered

her exquisitively carved flesh curves,

That naked fairy jammed his nerves,

That statuesque glow of marble on her skin soft,–

Aha that real life sculpture of

utmost sensuality and symmetry aloft!

Moon-rays deflected off her curves

and panting, pining reached his eyes,

Every moment her moon-sculpted body

acquired new vistas and highs,

Her flowing tresses on her naked back

lustily shook to her head’s gentle gyrations,

He couldn’t see her face clearly,

but he heard word spoken with mythic softness,

He was, but, dying to see her face,

so closer and closer he came

to fulfill his young heart’s only aim,

Alas! He was noticed by her female arm-guards,

Quickly their masculined arms hissed,

Surrounded by trained females

he’d decent chances of escape through a fight,

But how could he blot this night

by testing against females his skill,

Strong ladies advanced on him

with the chances to kill,

Caught he was in this way,

When the next sun came with its curious ray,

his misadventure’s word got around,

Shook then her father’s throne’s ground.

It was the enemy’s unforgivable crime,

So sentenced he was to death at his youth’s prime,

But kingdoms have inviolable laws,

so his royal blood deserved

the fulfillment of a last wish,

Then how could he miss

the last chance to see her face,

So request he an eye-full brace

of her magical features,

God! Why thou create such bewitching creatures?

He was thus led to the courtyard

below her balcony ornate,

Her sad eyes looked at him without any hate,

The prince too was no less on handsome scale,

On his perfect features a smile loomed pale,

The princess knew that her face had’n the bait,

which could soon seal this life’s fate,

Thus fell she at her father’s feet

with an utmost, painful entreat,

‘Father it was no fault of his,

but is all due to my well-thought kiss,

Stranger this prince is not,

for your daughter secretively tied the knot,

And if you kill him

sorrows and sins would cross ocean’s brim,

A father would widow his daughter,

For ages known will be this slaughter,

And if thou still send him to gallows,

certaily another death bellows’.

How could the King let this

darling flower wither away!

So smiled on many fates a new ray,

They were ceremoniously married,

Decades-old animosity was buried,

What beautiful outcome of her wise, petalous step,–

For herself marital bliss

and for two states a friendly kiss!

The Sage

Many-many years ago,

A sage was meditating

on a Himalayan peak,

Majestic dales and solitary vales

around all aglow with divine streak,

Though the bird chirped songs

and rain poured down in throngs;

In winters, icy cold storms blew

and snow around and over him glew;

In autumn wind-fallen leaves

sailed down with slumberous tumble,

and fruits ripe fell proudly,

adventurously for a juicy pleasant crumble;

In spring, wild flowers fully unfurled

their fragrance and smile,

and honey-bees engaged in

down-to-dusk toil;

Summer’s warm days sprayed

Desultory, eerie uneasiness around,

And cool nights proudly embraced

this son with soul heaven-bound,

But he never changed

from his meditative path.

Then on an autumn full-moon night,

A fairy was flying amid milky delight,

Her maidenly circles in air

found the seer in sight,

But even her laughter

and the rustle of her

unbelievably soft dress failed to

break the spell of engrossed sage,

His exquisitely masculine physique and personage,

Created tempted sparks on her magic stick,

She tried all juicily leering feminal trick,

But her desire-lorn curves in air

Brought only pearly tears in those eyes fair,

Helplessly she came down,

and sat in front of him

with those rose-red lips pursed in a

heart-breaking frown,

 Her nymphatic eyes were lost

in the handsome sculptural face,

 On it there was not a single worldly trace,

Mesmerized!

She lost the sense of night’s flight!

Next day!

The sun rose with full earthly delight,

Her eyes ogled at it terrified,

The hope to return to her realm died,

She’d broken the law of her place,

by not returning the same night

after that brief terrestrial, nocturnal brace,

The realization crashed at her

like a thunderbolt!

Her utmostly sensuous bare shoulders

heaved under the tremors of this fault,

A heart-rending shriek escaped her throat,

And serenely flowing meditative phase

met this sinful, fullstopping dot,

His communion with the divinity broken,

and his aeonically closed eyes opened,

Even flora-fauna realized

something terrible had happened,

His fiercely burning eyes

stared at the petalous flower in sobs and sighs,

Her large flooded eyes pleaded for mercy,

But fire in his eyes was unforgivingly cursey,

His fabric of serenity was torn,

He thundered,

‘Become an ugly bush of thorn!’

Mowed down by the spell off his cursing energy,

an ugly bush stood in place of those

beautiful limbs that kissed the air,

All shaken and ravaged he left the place,

A thorn branch, meanwhile, got entangled

in his loin cloth

as if for some meek, pleading brace.

The Parrot and the Old Sparrow

After a long, hard, heavy, wearisome journey

at sun down,

its will a bit cast down

and temper with a little frown,

The parrot with wings tired,

its beautiful colours all mired

in hard journey’s perspiration

landed on a branch.

Winter was at its peak,

And anxious, drooping, panting was the beak,

With every minute saffron slanting rays

were melting into misty bays,

Cold was slowly creeping up

and its pinch was becoming bold

to take everything in its hold,

With sad eyes it ogled at the setting sun,

Too long and taxing had’n the run

and long forgotten was the flight’s fun,

(Where was that fleeting, winged pun?)

With each mile the journey had become a drag

and vigour and energy that uplifted him with a brag

were now dumped in some pit,

Last ounce of strength was then hit,

But still he had far to go,

while his height became continuously low,

Before the eventuality did he bow

and anchored his feathery weight

upon a branch’s restful bait,

‘Merciless, frost-fanged will be the night,’

he thought to his misery’s delight,

As the warmth vapoured off his body,

Shudder came over him with incremental ease,

Anxiously he ruffled his feathers

as if to loosen cold night’s siege,

Where to spend the night

he thought from depression’s highest heights,

Suddenness of sunset made him realize

the possible utility of the remaining time,

And he looked around like the

feeble truth emanating from a sad rhyme,

For miles long everything appeared

surrendered to the twilight’s imminent pal,

And all wood appeared solid and creviceless;

without that niche which is a bird’s hall,

Before his despair and agony touched another peak,

he heard a muffled, breaking-free, old, juvenile shriek,

An old sparrow,

its grayish patches long under time’s harrow,

was seen bathing in a puddle,

Seeing him his senses went into a chilly huddle,

‘Hey, such a cold night in waiting!

Take care it does not become death’s baiting!

Fellow, you must take care

and must not extend your dare

to the extent of your doom!’

The sparrow squeaked and shrieked with zoom,

‘My old coat has enough room

for the water to turn vapours

and shun and beat death’s creepers!’

With his saggy, drenched feathering

the sparrow flew to him for a hearing,

And the visitor’s problem was told,

Said the sparrow becoming gracious and bold,

‘Dear, I have no family

and live in a banyan crevice,

Come with me, I’m at your service!’

It was a horribly chilly night,

No light for miles to sight,

Chilly rainstorm beat against the tree

to uproot the shackles and set it free,

But the tree was strong,

It withstood the deathly throng.

‘I live here all alone,

Though reminiscences sometimes come to moan

over my beautiful, active past,

Darted when I fast

and voowed damsel sparrows with finesse,

 Raised families as the cost for my instinct’s ecstasies,

Then age caught with me,

Now eyes no longer see

the beauties of this world around,

but sense the death’s bloodthirsty hound.

Still I live happily as the tail-end

of that great life lived,

 Enjoyed I the choices that fate sieved,

Now, I have to pickup and play

among those things and chaff discarded

which remain unwanted above

as fine particles trickle below,

Steadily this discarded heap grew

While I enjoyed the sieve’s fine brew,

Now I roll like a kid in that rubble of past

which was once waylaid by youth’s blast,

 It now becomes the precious wealth

of my old age,

Shiny becomes the rage in this haze,

There are no takers for it now,

So I enjoy it all alone

without that competition’s drone,

Happily I’m all alone with my age old,

And try even to become bold

against this winter’s hold,

During youth I flew majestically high

To beat cold by my blood warmths,

But now wisdom swarmths,

And I still find ways

to brightly lit my days with these feeble rays,

In this cosy wood-hole of mine

Drunk I’m with my age’s vintage wine,

I know that I may not go out of this hole

to ride softly on time’s back at some dawn,

When mortality may pick up the pawn,

Leaving this old feathering engraved

in this very woody niche,

But that does not make me sick,

Because that sleep does not seem

different from the one that I now enjoy,

The pitcher of desire no longer exists,

Neither is it empty

so that I must have desires to have it full,

Nor it is full, so that I should browbeat

being afraid of losing it,

The sinews holding life to my body

have become impassive, senseless and bloodless,

They will not feel the pain of cleavage:

It will be just like an autumn leaf

being painlessly windblown into oblivion,

In this tepid existence of mine,

devoid of both heat and cold,

warmth and coolness prevail in some

pleasant, vague proportion,

Pleasure and pain seem to have lost their specificities:

Neither both exist, nor are they dead.

You are young and colourful!

How come you look so submissive and sad?

Have the conditions been so bad

to steal and rob all the real charm

and leave the colour on the feathers and soul

so dull and poor?’  

The parrot spoke:

‘Though I am young

but the spirit seems to have sung

the last song of life,

Too much has been the pain and strife,

My spirit seems to have run dry now,

Though the colour on my feathers holds somehow,

When just a hatching, father was gone,

Grew I hearing mother’s moan,

The paternal sun thus never shone,

 Still the biggest consolation was mother’s

caressing, preening, feeding beak,

Ate I fruits at love’s supreme-most peak,

As the sole nestling

I was fattened on her labours daylong,

And then went to sleep hearing her lullaby song,

 Aha! Sweetest dreams came with a throng!

My whole existence was tethered

to that maternal pole,

The brightest, attractive-most star sole!

Under her great grooming,

colours on my feathering came bright,

Lavishly they flashed as I fluttered

them for my first flights,

Unbelievable was the pride and compassion

as her soaring soul’s maternal shades touched brightest heights,

In her eyes I saw a new light,

How marvelous was that sight! 

Alas her incorruptible love of yore

was arrowed by fatality’s shot,

Again cupid’s love arrow came hot,

I became a past with negligence and rot,

She was now in another spring of love,–

Incipient love for the future in her womb,

I thus became an orphan

even though my parents lived,

After many cries and anguished aimless flights bereaved,

Life’s burden with my soft feathers I heaved,

Young and beautiful, flew I with

time’s oblivion and balm,

Intoxicating is such youth’s charm.

Inevitably I fell in love,

Heartfully I cooed my beautiful lady,

Those love-lorn days when heart

was ever ready to sing an ecstatic ditty,

Such a wealth was in my kitty,

So sweet, silent, mirthful, unencumbering

were those acceptances of nuptial responsibilities,

Those watchful, eager searches for niches

in trunks for our nest,

Tirelessly we wandered around for the best,

Guided by love’s brace

we found our place,

In this tiny hole

nothing else but we had all the role,

Our identities melted into each other,

How proud was I when I became father,

I’ll not become like my parents, I thought,

I will not be ensnared like they were caught,

So I clung to my possessions with pride,

But the inevitability came with a chide,

In full bloom of youth and colours

all of my brood flew away,

 My lady-bird came to be infatuated

under someone’s cooing sway,

It was another fine day

when she bade adieu and flew away,

I embodied all forlornness,

All my loss was glaring in my face

monstrously unremedied,

I decided to leave that place,

And my sulking wings did brace

to take up the longest possible flight

from the place where such unfaithfulness abound,

So flew I as if pursued by

fearsome-most flying hound,

For many days I have been flying

with my soul aching and wings crying,

Why should we enter into something

and love somebody so completely,

if it is bound to gutters,

Isn’t all such temporary dives

into life all banal,

Aren’t we cogs in the hands of those

inevitable, unstoppable processes?

The old sparrow, full of wisdom,

Undisputed king of his life’s kingdom,

Spoke with the solace and simplification of age,

 When youth’s dilemmas no longer

haunt with their pinch and rage,

The sparrow said:

‘Its just like a flower ruing

and weeping over other blooms,

because its beauty will not last forever

and will go to glooms,

Dear, it’s not we who are the ends,

Rather the beautiful phenomena like

love, marriage, procreation that decide the trends,

We are just means to these

beautiful ends and destinations,

So, become a tool uncomplaining

tilling earth without any expectations,

It is not that love exists

because we do love someone,

Love is the primordial sea without any

limits of space, time and individualities,

It is we who sweeten a few

moments of life with it,

till the chaotic, destructible existences get hit,

Do we procreate to cling to procreation life long?

No! We are made to procreate

to become unselfish means for the propagation,

for handing over the batons,

to perpetuate these beautiful phenomena of

love and relationships,

We do not leave behind an offspring,

but a possible instrument

which might come in handy for

the sustenance and survival of

those very precious moments

that got us the taste of love, happiness

and contentment at their best,

And if we recognize that

then our spirit gets a solacing rest,

If not,

then caught in the web of selfish net,

we acrimoniously bet

that I completely loved her

and became the cause of young lives,

It was I who caused that buzzing in those hives,

But such limitations would have been

meaningful had our survival unlimited,

or say our immortality was uninhibited,

But our journeys are to be ended,

So just cherish those moments which you tended,

If you cling to these phenomena

like they are your inheritance forever,

They become a drag around your neck,

making you a prisoner behind bars,

which you create around yourself,

Liberate fella! Liberate yourself!

Become a journeyman who understands that

young flowers on a plant,

young soots on a twig

do not lessen themselves or the spring,

in not ruing over their wispy autumnal dismantling,

for they inculcate phenomena,

They help perpetuate treeness

And they sustain the beautiful,

natural concepts of beauty and bloom,

They also served in a similar way,

made some new ray (though it is only light)

to decimate in some shadows, some gloom.’

The long fabric of the stormy night

was slowly lifted over their head,

Outside, stormy chilliness was fleeting

before a promising twilight,

Chances were there for a day bright,

Clouds parted from the face of sky,

The parrot’s spirits cut through the shadows

and soared high,

The old sparrow said:

‘The day today is warm and sunny,

The dawn promises sweet honey,

Youngman, I’m in hurry to come out of my hole

and play my chirpy role

in the beautiful stage set around,

My soft soufflés and feeble light in my eyes

are enough even for the down-hilly afternoon,

 You but go high,

because the forenoon is there for you,

with its multihue,

Go, so that you do not rue over

the day aimlessly lost,

Do justice to the old spirit of thy host,

Take some lesson from my soft feebleness

and the way I make a day out of my night.

Thanking him the visitor flew away

into those swathes of promise,

where new life, new love, new relationships

held sway!

Platonic Love-making


These are the offsprings
of our platonic love-making,
I leave them in the
safe confines of your womb.
Nurture them!
Bear the pain of carrying
these restless, crying babies
inside your beautiful, safe self.
I am a weak father,
and you a strong mother,
You will need to
learn to be painless,
Because these burning babies of mine
are the angry fires
of their father’s pyre.
The pyre in which the soft flesh
of heart burns days in and days out.
You have been making love on the
hellish bed of my pyre
in which my living self burns forever.
In the fiery cradle
you have to hatch these cubs
of a father gone to ashes.
You have to blossom
living flowers amidst this
smouldering heap of
bones, flesh and my soul!

  Torrents of Love

An old orchard!

Swathed in the peaceful shades

of meditative trance,

Wise old trees,

Ripe fruits hanging languidly,

Solitary footpath covered with

pale fallen leaves,

Moments mating with timelessness,

Then suddenly a gust of free breeze!

Pining storm!

Ruffled leaves!

Sighing branches!

And the fruits ripened from ancient times,

Fell under the spell of

those majestic shoves

unleashed by the free wind!

           *********

It was a cave!

Dark, dreary and cold!

And he was the yogi,

Immersed in an unending trance

impregnating silent, still moments.

Mossy, damp, dark!

Then a softly shining

raylet sneaked in!

Unleashed a storm of light!

It kissed the darkest,

inaccessible stony crevices,

Sucked out the lifeless

core of dispirited self.

Those wispily pining lips exhaled

love, life and spirit!

It was pleasant riot!

An effusive mayhem!

An exhilarating melting!

An exciting massacre!

Of freedom over bondage!

Of light over dark!

Of…………………………

         ***********

 Summits stood proud,

Flaunting their rocky citadels,

We are the unconquerable

mountains they proclaimed,

 A wild river came

with its riveting fury.

Its sharp, serpentine curves

let out throbbing, pulsating fury,

which cut through

the iron-hard rigidity.

Rocks gave in!

Summits after summits fell,

Their proud mass melting

in those sensuous swirls!

The river flew majestically

carrying boulders and sand

of those fallen soldiers who

challenged its majestic mirth.

              ************

Across the darkish cloud of my being,

You shine like a moon.

Milky……soft!

Beloved! You put this shining

signature on my being!

*********

Wild river!
Feel the sand that you carry
in your majestic swirls!
That’s me the proud mountain!
But that self was rocky and rigid,
Now I’m soft and cradled 
in your gushing torrents!

            *********

Majestic river,

Now I feel like a

particle of sand

in the sensuous swathes

of your gushing waters!

        *********        

In the pining silence of

frozen, dark hours,

a star spreads its mystic light

over a vacant heart.

Feminine raylets mate with

cold stones and impregnate

the boundless womb with

countless little stars.

The heart now becomes a galaxy,

Its self enlarged with a cosmic quotient

and profound peace spread

across its bosom!

        *********

I am the moth

and I love my flame!

My fire!

But I feel the burning core of

the glow around which

I helplessly circle around!

I know that I cannot stop

the fire from burning,

So I throw myself in a fiery pit

to forget my dear flame’s burning plight!

I throw myself in a bigger fire

so that I forget myself

and my flame’s cries!

             ***********

I feel the shapeless mass of your love,

It creeps like a venomous reptile

through the garden of my heart,

It furiously hisses,

returning my softest kisses,

I bear the toxic marks

left on my skin by your fangs.

Still I carry your poisonous bulk

in the soft cradle of my heart.

Why?

Because I have no choice to hate you,

I can just love you!

          **********

Love, I’d a cemented identity,

It was narrow, confined,

and constricted by the iron mask

put on my true face

by the society and circumstances.

The you walked in my life

with your pining majesty!

Your soft lips kissed the

the lifeless iron of my mask.

It melted in the softly smoldering

furnace of your pout!

The melting mask!

Its glowing fluid shining on my true face,

Beloved, you salvage my

real self from that imprisonment!

This real self may be good or bad

for the society,

For they judge by my identity old,

I but care not

because at least I see my true face!

    **********

    There was an ice block,

As old as anyone can recall!

It had its frigid polar existence.

In the deep recesses of

its cold, snowy being,

endless nights pined,

Icy cage around its soul!

Then a warmth suddenly sneaked in!

Mossy rigidities melted under

the spell of those nimble cuts

and the stony ice melted,

Unleashing countless rivulets

gushing over his melting landscape.

The cage was broken,

The spirit merged in the

melodious embrace of

those royal-hued rays.

He lost his old self

to merge in a larger identity.

It was rebirth!

It was liberation!

*************

The Stone and Dead Wood

Only a flower that has been allowed to blossom

knows the pleasures of caresses and kisses, 

A stone but misses the breeze’s deft touches,

Into its hardened pores no raylet reaches,

Only a beautifully blossomed bough 

adorned with new soots, saplings, leaves and flowers

dances to the air’s singing tune,

A dry twig is all but immune to the storm’s fury 

and soft breeze’s flirtatious games.

I too now become a stone,

Put me in desert’s parched sand

and you will listen no moan,

Put me in the cosy confines of a luxurious room,

And you will hear no heart’s boom,

Because all the juices vanished

during those nights of gloom. 

A stone is a stone, is a stone, is a stone,

It has got its solid, concrete, lifeless status alone,

Inside it the light never shone

and its ironed particles clumped inseparably and forlorn. 

Now, I too become a stone,

So let the storm blow,

It but cannot beat me further low,

Or let there be spring around,

Let the blossoms all panorama surround,

It but cannot change my face,

On my stony, statued lips no smile’s trace,

A stone statue now I become,

Expressionless and eternally mum,

But the stone statue is not dead, 

Even though no calamity’s fear

roaming inside its ahead ,

and no pleasant expectation imprinted

anywhere in those cold stormy eyes,

But life somewhere deep down in its

solid chambers impassively sighs!

The Old Moon and the Imperiled Panorama

Pallid rays of this pale moon

had grown old so soon

during that half hour before the morning twilight,

It was a chilly, clear-skied, frosty, fogless January night,

The moon just a night away from fullness

had been exceptionally bright.

Nightlong, almost near the acme of its beauty

it had fulfilled its luminous duty,

Its milky beams had over-lighted

or overshadowed many a star,

It seemed eager to blot out

every stain and tainting tar,

Its beams falling like snows

upon sleeping horizon to the far,

The beautiful plains of this countryside

were lying in sleepy abundance

under the milky, chilly blanket with slumberous pride,

Everything was open to this celestial torch

with nothing to hide,

Cold-basking fields were huddled under their croppy sheets;

above was gloating the marvelous moon-shine,

Wheatlings stood bow-headed in reverence

with dewy crown fine,

Those marigold flowers were shining

unabashed under the milky showers,

The flowers happy about

losing their colors to the lover’s

mysterious smiles and its powers,

White pea flowers boasted their augmented whiteness,

Aha, such dolefully beneficent had been the brightness,

Even trees didn’t seem dark, indistinct specters

lurking shadowily over the horizon,

They appeared boats of foliage

floating in a misty sea,

In the background of such a brightly lit stage

even the sky seemed earth-lorn,

Through the milky transparency

its bluish-black veil lurked and through it

only the brightest stars smiled,

Scattered in the docile swathes of this

moon-baked countryside

villages seemed like mammoth ships silently

floating in the white wavy sea of light.

The moon was now well past its prime,

as if in shining too bright it had committed a crime,

Its setting quarter was in the north-west,

where the moony panorama had shone best,

And now it was moving towards rest,

Its strength and vigor had

dangerously plummeted down,

It now seemed ogling with a

meek, angry, anguished, helpless frown,

Its brightness was fastly fading out

And its yellowish pale rays

appeared eager for a wailing shout,

Glumly it was fading over those sandy undulation

carrying fields, furrows, crops on its gently unfolding dome,

Shiny fruits born of sweat-laden efforts in its sandy loam,

Accusingly the moon threw pale, protesting

shadows in south-east,

where urbanism, consumption and crass commercialist

blatantly had its seat commanding, metropolitan, capitalist feast,

The area had been earmarked

for some merciless development project,

It now being defined by a tiny space

bound in a map issued under

the state government’s gazetted notification,

What a mischief by the developmental hand!

Ever eager to bulldoze over nature

and turn it into uncomplaining, lifeless sand,

where lustrous stones will be built over nature’s burial,

 Oofs! How heartless, wanton and depraved!

This pale, mournful moon

which was to set soon

into the misty gloom of twilight,

when a bright sun of consumerism and commerce

was ascending to its dawning height,

Those stalks of reeds

which sway in the cold breeze without greeds

seemed gently bidding the moon a good-bye,

Plummeted which further down

with a swollen face and a sigh,

Its pallid face grimacing with a painful nostalgia,

Its fading, setting rays tainted with deadly paleness;

Its oblong, teary face

now looked at this landscape,

Sleepy fields, warmthful wastes and fellow lands,

What mighty lessons have been taught here!

Aha! The farmer going to the fields with his gear,

Those long, painful, sometimes fruitless days

subsided when the sun’s eager rays

 looking at the sweat’s trove

and the shirt’s hoe,

Where the long painful dark nights

arrived like the deeds accomplished,

Where the failures galore

but the hardwork never bored,

These failures defined success

as the losses stood just as a testimony to the profits,

Where hopes, aspirations and desires

varied with the changing hues of weather,

Farmer pawning everything

for the feathers in destiny’s crown,

Gold forms immaterially—

or minimally at the rate of a dust speck for a gram—

in the toiled soil brown,

All will be gone,

The moon was also dying with a moan,

This beautiful charming mystery of the landscape—

why hardest labor fetches minimal returns;

and why a bit less harder toil results in

a soul-satisfying speckful of return that seems wealthiest—

All this beautiful, aesthetic, curvy, circuiting strings;

Mysteries of landscape, of destiny,

of the see-saw battle between pleasure and pain,

between penury and sustainable as well as gluttonous gain,

between life and death:

All this will be lost for a direct, straight,

materially penetrating needle of surety,–

The commercial, unflinching and fixed

use of the landscape

in the form of concrete approach

where profits will boomerang

in proportion to the short-cuts;

Where compromised morality, ideology and conscience

will not face any ifs and buts;

Where there will not be any sweet scent

of labor that will be replaced by

the mechanical, greasy, muddy panting

of merciless competition and grab;

Where concrete blocks, flats will replace

these wonderous solitudes basking in and around;

Where sheaves, stalks, straw and reeds

will not sway to the breeze,

but blank, rigid, ironed tower

will stand mutely, inflexibly to the nature’s cooing calls.

Now the sorrowfully yellowing

death rattle of the setting time

was arriving with a chime.

There on the opposite horizon the day opened a window

to sneak a peek at the imperiled room of night,

Wispily, there was the twilight

with its mixed day-night delight,

In its mysterious lap,

the old moon met a slightly premature death,

Slumped as it feebly, freely

into the silvery sea of mist

standing still over the treeline.

Into this sea of death, the moon plunged,

And the twilight mischievously winked

with it unfaithful, teasing look asking favors

both from the night and the day,

The old moon was gone with its last ray,

And soon-to-be-doomed panorama,

unmindful of the fatality waiting,

came out of its dewy slumber,

A crane’s clarion call

cree….ked over its yawning breast,

The sun prepared to cast its first ray

and the fields got up for another hard farming day.

PS—Time of the poem: Half hour before the morning twilight of January 13, 2006 (Lohri); a day before the full moon day (Makar Sakranti, January 14).

Conversation with a Stranger

One day he asked someone hiding inside

the bodily façade like a fugitive,

‘Who are thou?

And why despite all the architectural negativities

people define thou positively?’

From it unreachable deep cellar

that someone raised it germ-free, disinfected voice,

‘I am the exiled one without choice,

While the bones and the flesh around me

in worldly spotlight rejoice,

I just take the ordained backseat

and watch the game of

birth, survival, struggle and death

played inside the castle on the shaking stage.

‘Don’t you feel perplexed by the passing days?’

Again the query was voiced,

‘Don’t you feel bad or ever you rejoiced?’.

It answered in a heavy, impassive tone,

‘Thy gimmick cannot shake my throne,

In the timeless shades I spend my time here

and when the castle will be broken

the death squad will find the door open,

Away I’ll fly with the figures of

deeds and misdeeds to the final court,

and if it is found short,

again I’ll be exiled.

It has been like this for thousands of years,

but I never rejoice at new birth

nor weep at death and shed tears,

My book lies in mighty primordial hands

and the player to settle cores changes with worldly trends,

I am the same forlorn, exiled child

of the majestic, mighty father,

It’s a never-ending game perhaps,

A tiny cog on the chessboard of creation,

Let’s see how high and mighty you make the castle,

Void will then gobble the tone and stars!’

Life

It is good that

we must cultivate dreams,

But most often

man’s uncertainty and destiny’s certainty screams

to shatter them to pieces.

We, though must hope

to evade the deadly anchor’s drop,

It is our futile, and not so futile, duty to

carry the life’s ship through heaving waves,

Wonderful! So many winds one braves!

Like smoldering coal in the hull

the passion ever craves,

The tiny flicker braves

against the mightiest swathes of stormy dark,

Storms, meanwhile, play against the timber strong,

In the wooden frame, but, many dreams throng,

And enjoy the journey, though, unfinishable and long!

Time’s worms eat the timber,

And stealthily doth eventuality limber,

to sneak through the destiny’s holes,

Longly piled up agony of the storm furiously rolls,

Carried thou so far and wide;

tattered are those soles.

We carry a mountainous bulk of hopes

encased in some ash and tear drops,

How meticulously time thrashes its harvest,–

From buxom ripe fruits

it reaps only peelings and stones,

From life’s crop

death reaps only the lifeless drop,

The majestic reaper

wants but few grains of soil

from all the juicy, lifeful, thriving tissues.

Still, we have to live

and we need to hope

till that final mop,

We know that the slate will be

cleaned up after all,

But we have to play our part in life’s ball,

For crammed will be the hall

tomorrow as well,

When in other bodies life will dwell.

Whom Should I Blame?

What we do and what we don’t,–

May be it is our choice,

Or maybe the hands of providence

guide or misguide?

Don’t know

whether it is our action’s rejoice,

or partisan fate’s prejudice?

Stealthily we try to ensure

the credit for the good falls in our own bag,

And if things go wrong

our stage-manages throng

to put all blame on the old hag.

Whatever we may think of ourselves,

We’re, but, the good- or bad-chanced kids

of the parental—earthly and other worldly—topsy-turvies,

If not so,

What person is there to wish

directly his doom;

Which life’s light voluntarily seeks

to be extinguished to gloom?

Still—less directly and more indirectly—many

against their will are brought to the wrong end,

Where the expected destination

does not exist not even its name;

Where the undoing swiper chuckles in all its fame,

And the half-willed animal

gets tethered to a peg for a chained tame,

Then follows the great game,

Many try to put each other to blame.

It is but a futile mockery,

Mere verbosity cannot bust

the secret of that trickery.

Ever-lorn to justify ourselves,

Many-a-time we put the blame

squarely on destiny’s elves,

saving just digestible morsels for ourselves,

And feed mammoth dose of

unwanted garbage to the uncomplaining lady.

What does it matter

if the blame lies with us

or it is borne by the

speeding wheel’s crush,

The loss, after all, is a loss,

Whoever is the causing boss.

To me, either both of us go scot free,

Or both are put under the accuser’s glee!

Victory

O thou poor lady of rich virtues

and big but spent eyes,

Thy rosy, soft, tempting lips

bear the blood-drawn scar of a

timeless, incessant, ever-greedy, lusty kiss;

On your fair cheek, tireless pursuer’s mouth;

Muck with saliva and pitiless, sadistic hiss;

Your majestic head,

heavily diamonded with uncountable,

innumerable, romping homes and wins;

Smartly, smirkly are tied under this crown,

thy mercilessly, heedlessly, heartlessly tresses

tampered by the fingers committing sins;

Thy firm, upright breasts have been

bobbed to excitement so many times

that stonily they no longer feel the lover’s lick,

They now feel the pathetic kid’s sickly blood-suckling.

I wonder after so many love-romps, intercourses,

love-makings, rapes, smotherings and sex games

—the victories—

what thou feel in the area of focus of such tireless passions!

Is it still the titillating sexual ecstasy,

or every endeavor is as repulsive

as the stealthy, predatory approach of a cowardly hyena?

Thou were once the Goddess of the realm of

commitment, excellence and diligent striving-forths,

But for thousands of years,

wars were lustily ravaged against thy beautiful body

and thy blissful skin was bombarded with

human passions and pestilence.

If the lofty destination all but becomes

Final steps of the mucking path,

Mud will definitely clung at its own apron,

As the stained devotee falls at its feet

after all those gutted baths,

And in its insurmountable helplessness

the Goddess of yore has been turned into a prostitute,

Though they still worship it in its old physical avatar,

But that soul banished and left destitute,

The herculean endeavors and efforts

of these throbbing masses

go on squeezing from all sides,

Thou in a tight corner,

Dressless and pitted against the wall;

Only that small, soft hand hides thy honor,

Thy Godly spirit now driven back to the

edge of a fearsome precipice,

Thou are no longer the Queen,

for thy own fate seems

worth decidable by the throw of a dice.

The poor lady now stands all exhausted;

Tattered, battered, bruised at the lowest tide,

The most coveted, prized virgin

now sulks like a dejuiced, unsuitable fruit

ready and waiting to give its stone and hide,

What can I get from thou O poor lady?

Thy treasure trove is all but famished now,

You are left with just

monstrously compromised Satan’s diamonds,

Even my beautifully courting pursuit

will seem a poor robbery and loot,

So here I step aside

from the blood- and treachery-rutted path,

and think of some long-drawn, circuitous path

that can take me

—after a life-long hard-worked journey—

to an isolated place

that may provide me thy pure, unstained sight!

Dark Shelter

Too far and deep I have gone into the pit of gloom,
And lost in the cavernous folds of the impending doom,
Even the brightest big suns now appear too far,
Faint stars these now and just flash their inspiring rays,
Feeble raylets reaching me cannot take out the ship caught in treacherous bays,
I know the futility of the beckoning light,
Even in its brightest folds outside, hope was always out of sight,
Now i go deep into my night,
With nobody as a witness to my plight,
All cherished dreams out of sight,
A wingless bird that tried to fly but then crashed from its struggled height,
Now I just silently walk into the dark hold of my night,
Alone
and forlorn,
Musicity of my soft moan,
Carrying me into hitherto unreachable zone!

Dark Shades under Light


It has been months since 
I last lit my faith’s lamp,
So many days have passed since
prayers chimed in my dark den’s air damp, 
My meditating self,
Now gives atheistic yelp.
Lost my faith!
Lost my prayer!
Lost my rituals!
Lost my meditative trance!

Hope Melting out of Frigidities!!

There is light beyond the deepest dark depth,
There is a bright day after the ghostly haunts of nightmarish night,
After a barren famished fight there is a blossomed springed delight,
After pining pangs of seperation there is a worthy end to the desperation, 
After crashing in the gutters there is a surge and rise to bathe in holy waters,
After crying convulsions on the lips, a smile takes honeyed sips,
After the last deafeat, still there is an undying urge to accomplish the feat,
Even when blind with despair, there is hope hiding and cajoling somewhere,
Even in hate love still lurks somewhere!!!!

Self-defined World

The Spring’s traces last,
Hot summers approaching fast,
Languid notes in the air,
A solitary bird’s forlorn chirping for musical share,
Drowned in stillness
this late morning bright and fair, 
Sky’s dull blue,
Overhanging the earth in paling hue,
But a smaller world is there,
The overall lethargy cannot reach where,–
In its self-defined world
in a corner tiny,
The luscious wild flower
still stands brave and shiny!

Being with the Self!

I know life has rejected me,
And death when will accept me
that time is yet to be!
Till then, O Sufi, is there any light to see?
Yes fella! 
It’s in being with those who have been discarded by fate,
Who have laboriously scrawled and scribbled lifelong
but still have a clean slate;
It’s in smiling with innocent dawns;
It’s in basking in the sunny charms of forlorn lawns;
It’s in the faded twinkle of distant stars;
It’s in saying goodbye to the intrigues of my own internal wars;
It’s in being with me,
And the way it is, let it be!

Love Bites

 The poisonous black coils hiss

and entangled in fanged loops go for a kiss.

Two glossy-black slithery bodies

lost in the fearsome quagmire of poisoned passion

eat each other’s identity in some unheard fashion.

The venomous fangs,

Lay bare their monstrosity,

making the moments vicious, stealthy, dangerous.

The tongues of death

nastily sway to a mysterious song,

It is like brutal soldiers of death

marching on a bloody path endlessly long.

It is like death dancing:

Its poisoned lips heaving, pushing its mighty pout

against the innocent, pure face of mortality.

Pitted against the cataclysmic forces of death,

the lovely pink sheen on the pristine face prevails.

Its softest brace breaks the hardest stones.

The fierce aura suddenly bids time to stay still,

to extinguish its fire at the acme:

the pleasure-topped hill.

The love prevails,

The horrible storm loses its restless travails

in the hazily lit mellowness of ecstatic surrender:

Defanged, depoisoned.

They are now just two beautiful creatures.

The Old Bull and the Dead Wood

 I’m an old bull,

My rock-hard bones heave and pull

the rickety cart,

I’m skinny but perfect in my belief

that I’ve to justify my morsels before I depart.

I carry a dead body that once was

a robust attire for some sylvan soul,

It was an honest being;

this long, hard body,

It fulfilled all its duties without exception.

But then this is the age of vandals,

They can just vandalize only,

They axed it, chopped it.

I now carry the carcass

as the trophy of their triumphant glory,

I but silently mull over this murder story.

Delhi around me boasts of its mechanized colors;

cars, megamalls,  skyscrapers,

westernized guys and gals,

and thousands of glamorous pitfalls.

Haa..wonder they can’t do without me!

With salivated gusto

my labored breathing eggs me on,

while my victimized skeleton creaks and bemoan.

The flyover is the challenge,

My owner beats my back like an enemy,

It is a treacherous task,

But it is my duty to carry the body

for its final rites,

otherwise someone will miss

many a drawing room delights.

Iron Lady

It is noisy chaos,

Delhi at its best,

Impatient horns, smoky guffaws,

tired engines, shouts, dust,…

The lotus, but, shines in the mud.

Pulling the carrier rickshaw she is unfazed,

Two kids, a goat, a bundle of poor provisions

safely in tow,

Like a valiant captain at the best row.

Clad in a dirty saree

she shines like a queen,

I don’t think femininity had ever been

so illustrious in its sheen.

Meanwhile, madly mechanized world hisses,

But its lolloping tongue meekly kisses

the dirt on her hardened feet,

She pulls the rickshaw with pride

in full maternal heat,

Cramped for space she turns the tide,

The goat and the kids though panicked,

but the mother carries on the fight

in the traffic jam,

Fights for space with utmost grace,

and clears like a swiftest deer’s brace.

The prisoner

I’m ragged old,

I was once the youth icon

of the fauna around me,

Delhi was far and nonthreatening then,

We just enjoyed its lights from a safe distance,

The city didn’t seem at war with us,

But then it just spilled over,

Its bridges, roads, cemented pavements

ate into our innards,

I witnessed massacre of my near and dear ones,

I’m now caged in a high rise residential complex,

I’m just a poor, tiny banyan tree now,

Standing as an archaic symbol

in my cramped corner of this little park.

I go out of my way to give shade and cool air,

But I’m horrified and scared.

Even a kid picking a tiny pebble

to playfully hit my canopy

sounds like a terrorist hurling a deadly grenade.

So, against my nature

I’m always on guard,

crying for peace and mercy,

But it is too noisy around,

My mercy petitions fall on the deaf ears

of the stony facades standing haughty and proud,

I’m afraid any day the judgment

will arrive against me! 

Encroachers

This thunderous beat of waves on the beach

tries to reach

the hardest core of rocks standing

mute and sullen on the coast.

The sea and its maddening waves;

uproarious, stormy, and boastful most.

For years, its stormy passion kissed the rocky face,

The fury of its infatuation caught the unsoliciting

lover in a grasping embrace,

The rocks mellowed and crumbled as beach sand,

Once where there was land

now becomes the soft love bed

for the waves to shed

their gnashing fury on its soft grains,

where love sighs in gay abandon

and soft showers turn into torrential drains.

In this land—sea love pit

a new passion gets lit,

Surrendered to excited storms

we forget all norms

and let loose waves

that break false rigidities and forced facades

build inside us for decades.

Waves to waves!

Rocks to rocks!

The sea just watches meekly

this sensuous storm on its bed:

The encroachers with all shame shed,

Its warning shouts ebbing away in distance,

as if afraid of this rival stormy surge

on the beach,

It recedes to save itself from this

huffing, puffing , grunting, tempestuous game. 

The Kashmiri Girl

I read a pastoral poetry,

Among hills, of elysian delight;

Light’s incidental rays when

versified moment that,

A little queen burst into view,

Eyes were mesmerized by

that youthful hill girl.

Our eyes met for the first time,

Mine from the plains,

Vehicled, wind-screened, speeding,

And hers from the mountains;

Alluring gaiety of hills and pastures,

One which saw so few;

Forests, snow, pastures, goats,

apple orchards, pines, sheep,

And jovial looks of course at

the vehicles bound for the holy cave.

The other but fed up with

brain-sauced, levelled up intricacies,

And when they butted upon,

Tensioned smiles surfaced,

Some grudges, some complaints,

Fear, excitement and adventure,

Mine for the fee-faw going on,

Hers for their sufferings.

Symbolized it two plates,

The Indian and the Eurasian,

Rubbing into each other,

Earthquakes, landslides, killings;

The tale of two religions,

Two geographies also.

She looked coyly,

The deflorating valley hurtled while

a craggy voice around,

Kashmiri girl! Child you were not

to shout for toffee, biscuit from the pilgrims,

Like the small ones doing the same.

A long road the yatris travelled,

Mature too you were not,

To snub at the pilgrim’s gifts,

From the jovial 14- or 15-stepped podium,

Thou smiled with full brace;

Nature’s smile, unchecked and pure!

Made then a V-sign with fingers,

Its meaning you may not even know:

A win for which side?

O floret! Still it was a welcome,

Also a signal to get some gift

from the pilgrims to the holy cave,

Some returning to the plains,

Perhaps never to return again.

Stupefied, I leaned forward,

To accept welcome from the houri,

Crowning the celestial beauty around,

Dollishly you smiled again,

Alas, thou were welcoming

a fleeting acardiac tin box,

Sped off which by your side,

Thy fingers somewhat shaking,

Curling to show dejection,

Under your breath

a deflorating smile surfaced,

It was laced with a sweet request,

The excitement in your beautiful eyes

touched peak as the vehicle crossed over,

That emeraldine face blushed,

I was but the poorest man,

Not to possess anything to offer

to that welcoming symbol of love,

Something strung and awakened the self

like the morning song of birds;

The ditty which the heart

just danced to beatific rhythm,

Turned it now the verse

defective at the beginning,

Yes! Fugitive and guilty—

Escaping with the heartless machine,

While that velvety cord,

Connected which many Twos,

Was on the verge of snapping,

Moving was I with lolling time;

Chhee, a passive journey

from here to the place called home.

Past it was becoming from the present,

Dirt cheap celerity was taking a toll,

A few seconds ago

the feminine Goddess smiled like full moon,

Chiding Abba was now turning it demi-lune,

That soft, juicy, jovial, ripening

bird of love and peace was branched alone.

In that moment of versification

forgot this mortal to symbolize

its ecstasy in any way,

The distance was increasing now

to the farness of hills from the plains,

Like a misbecomed soul,

I convulsed and turned to look back,

And there you shone like a little star,

Bright enough to make time reflow

by the road and your little hamlet nearby,

Crowning the path like

a milestone reached by someone, somewhere,

Missy, thou as rare as a perfect lunar rainbow!

Me lucky to spot one!

I waved at you,

A gesture of defeat, bliss, apologetic and may more,

Good bye perhaps to that

monticule moonet waving back,

Oh, what purity!

Welcoming and forgiving,

Brisking away the netherworld bursting around.

Girl, I looked back till

you turned a faint image

to these eyes,

kept on which hope for the peep-o’-day,

To see the orchid again,

Alas, you but were sheer rarity;

An elusive dreamy appearance,

Which like a fictitious love-tale

painted the heart for a while,

And then you were gone,

For seconds nine or ten

waved when you at the vehicle,

Chiselled in the heart an ogive,

Fade which will not with time,

That small ray emanating

from that montane onyx,

Will always keep travelling

to deep fathoms in my heart.

Tears were of course there,

For that smiling forgiveness,

I gave you nothing,

But the novelette poured

such tomes of wordings in my heart;

That wave of hand,

As rattled on the clatter-hearted pilgrim,

Created big tremors inside,

Enough to break the glaciers

crowning the peaks above,

With suffering peals of thunder inside,

Driven was I forward on the gutted path.

O girl from the mountains!

You smiled for Kashmir whole,

The smile which was part-coloured;

Anguish, fear, communalism, violence

got mixed in an all-pervading whiteness;

That olive branch to a visitor,

Offering the nature’s indiscriminating boons around,

Negating all that repressing force

subdues which the free-ways of liberated hearts,

You thus appeared a little saint,

Preaching love, compassion and humanity,

Oneness of nature, humanity and God.

A pilgrim to the valley,

Aching was isolation:

Not of tough clime and testing terrain,

But of hearts rapidly forgetting love,

Kashmir! The crown of India,

The diadem of culture and history,

With man-nature bonhomie,

And cradled heaven on highest terrain,

The seat for spirituality of the great Lord,

And many legends of religion mine,

Meditations in the snowy peaks,

Vales, glaciers, pastures and clouds,

The cheering spectators for truth’s delight.

Now the same peaks isolated,

Bombs and bullets yell macabre,

Only suffering cries reach His door,

From these lofty peaks under His chin

guns rattle and bombs create bloody din,

But for whom?

Ishwar or Allah?

Devastated by such a loss,

Hung midair like legendary Trishanku,

Between two extremes,

Trapped in a paradox,

With numbed senses,

Unable to think and feel,

I crossed your roadside hamlet,

And there you were,

Ready to enliven this dazed puppet

with a gold thread having silver core.

That girlish look of eagerness and curiosity,

Excitedly standing on the toes, chin high,

Neck firm like a goddess:

Seemed it a salad-days gyration:

That V-sign,

That smile,

and the wave of hand,

Byeing and good-byeing the visitor,

Hill girl, you stood for the nature around,

Sang a little song of lovely nightingale,

With the scented message that

I am above the things you think,

Waving on the road

you were thus left behind,

Rattled as I along the road,

Knew the authority of ‘moving on’—

‘Accept not welcome such’,

Many uncertainties of the stoppage:

Of Hinduism, Islam and a pilgrim,

Of a Kashmiri Muslim adolescent girl

waving at an Indian Hindu,

And thus helplessly I moved on,

Surrendered to fate and destiny,

Caught in the forces of an orbit,

Mechanised like all the parts

of the vehicle around me,

And then the curve in the orbit

took me out of sight

from that small raylet,

Which was left lost there.

A huge nostalgia piling up already:

Tears in my eyes;

Tears for the curved inevitability,

Tears for a glorious spectacle,

which the fate provided to a stranger;

Fear for the turmoiled smoke

ready to engulf her and her tiny hamlet,

And the Ws about her—

What, when, why, where, whom.

Moisture in the eyes,

Feeling of pain about the damsel,

Who an instant back

poured nature’s shower upon me,

And with such an open heart!

With such unselfishness!

A gift for the miser from the plains,

The glorious gift of the hill girl,

From the daughter of clouds,

From the sister of serpentine ravines,

From the playmate of wild breeze,

From the princess of that golden silence.

O bather in the brooks,

Catcher of early sunrays,

O snowy beauty of winters,

Or the flowery one of springs,

I don’t know whether

I will see you again or not,

But you will always remind that

nature once stood before me,

versified as a slender hill girl,

looked and waved at me,

That nature once let me read her,

Not the chapter usual

of forest, peaks, snow and brooks,

But a new chapter

in her human version,

Where a sweet swifty angel

chanced across me;

That nature from its abditory

produced a juvenile accretion,

With gaiety, mirth, hilarity;

A page from the Elysium epoch,

With words of unqualified love and smile.

The rugged topography around

saw a goddess in the ripening face,

Those fishy lips moving to fullness,

Those oval eyes acquiring hazel depth,

That nose eager to snatch female coquetry,

Those cheeks eager to be apple-hued,

That forehead proud to recently hear the call of puberty,

That chin with a naughty twitch,

All these depicted the desire and dreams

of the unconquered nature around,

Earlier it lost its smile

in the generality pervading around,

Mother nature, voice whose

came through birds, brooks and sighing mountain winds,

All these and more realized their worth

around your lips,

Whispered as you some sweet word with a smile,

These ears are most unfortunate,

Not to catch that soft whiff,

Which nature tried to voice.

Kashmiri girl!

Mother nature again hid you in its folds,

As suddenly as you appeared,

Lost are you in your small world,

I recollect the sinews now,

Scattered in my soul,

That glimpse sparkled too heavenly,

Melting pains and sparkling ecstasies,

Ever evolving and diversifying,

And me with a birdie hurry

try to relive the same picture again,

Alas, now but I only fail,

Depersonified nature I face now—

Huge mountains, forests, snow

and a large vacant pool of silence,

A wave of pain surfaces from inside,

It goes to the soul’s deep well,

And echoes from that cosmic experience

travel far into the distances.

֍♠֎

The Lone Pine

‘Embraced by the pining silence

and stillness of these mute hours,

my detached self grows more independent,

free and aloof like these misty distances

virginally spread out under the moonlight,

The silvery mists kiss my prickly needles

with love free of pride or prejudice.’

Thus mused the lone pine

and felt absolutely fine!

֍♠֎

The Beauty and the Beast

Greedy, lustful gust of wind

clasped the fragrant petals

of the full-blossomed flower.

Covetous currents of its dark passion

tore the tiny vase of beauty and perfume.

Petals fly with dust in all directions.

The storm doesn’t win

and the beauty doesn’t lose!

The former loses battle over time and distance

and dies with thorny imprints

left by the stem on its viciously throbbing heart,

The latter spreads its cosily surrendered self

in the limitless folds of peace.

֍♠֎

The Roguery of Kiss

The sun playing hide and seek among floating clouds,

The humid air wispily whispering a smart secret,

The land lying languidly with overdose of love;

its pining thirst quenched

by the sky’s countless kisses and love-drops,

A dove pair mating,

lost in the silent majesty of lusty innocence,

And he holding her hand

with a soft touch to cover stony realities,

A gentle kiss follows

to hide the mutual lies told

to make each other happy and joyful

for the time being.

֍♠֎

A Paradisiacal Moment

With softly pining majesty,

silence sings a song,

Shadows grow long,

Her soft fingers brace my face

and go along a tear’s trace.

Delicate tip of her finger bears the jewel,

A tear,

The tear that would have been

lost as a salty line on my face.

֍♠֎

Moving on

Lynched by loneliness,

I surrendered to the

sweet tyranny of solitude,

The wounds healed,

The suffering receded,

They moved away

like shifting shadows,

Painful memories lagged behind

and turned milestones on the foggy path,

Of course sweet breeze blows sometimes

and carries syrupy memories from behind,

They leave a smile on my lips

and are again left behind, as I move on,

like sweet path-side flowers,

I look back,

They wave a sweet good bye

with a still sweeter sigh,

And thus we have to move on,

All alone

to our destination next,

And pitch our tent at one fine dusk

and go for a long, long sleep.

֍♠֎

Love-cuts

Love leaks out of my body,

drop by drop.

Her cuts are incurable:

The non-healing holes;

the ever-existing outlets

for the mellowness inside

to seep out and turn stones.

֍♠֎

Sugar-coated Hook

Was it your love?

Or the fishing hook of some winning, crushing trait,

On which you had expertly put

smart, suave, attractive and beautiful bait.

֍♠֎

A Pure Religionist

Religion mine isn’t that weak,

So as to cripple me

to condemn and hate some other religion.

I don’t have to hate others

to prove love for my own.

֍♠֎

A Normal Grip

If there is a storm around you,

I mean nasty, leering sea-storm

churned out by the incurable circumstances,

Whining like a dog won’t help,

Nor will the majestically brave lion’s roar

to tame the storm help you.

It’s better that we try to swim

to the best of our humble capacity,

Leave then the rest to the unknown forces.

Believe me,

even the burning core of the nastiest storm,

ultimately embraces

the cool ice block of a genuine effort!

֍♠֎

Awakening

In the mist-veiled silence of a dream,

I sleep-walked into the crazy grasp

of a thorny bush.

All we just need is a prickly bite

to see the reality!

֍♠֎

Grand Illusions

With sand-grains grasped in my hands,

fleeting clouds in my heart

and enforced philosophies in my head,

I set out to win the kingdom

that never existed!

֍♠֎

The Angels of Duality

We hatch our own agonies and ecstasies

in the workshop of our mind,

Deep in a little corner

of our private space.

֍♠֎

The Runaway Vagabond

In the calm core of my wind-lashed, stormed self,

some unmovable shadow

defines the substance of my being.

I but have been running miles after miles,

chasing mirages to seek my identity.

֍♠֎

The Journeyman

It doesn’t matter

where you come from,

what matters is

where you go;

and more importantly

how you go.

֍♠֎

A Rain-soaked Moment

Village…

musty…

like a mossy mushroom under a banyan…

rain-lashed…

semi-shaded silvery-haired wise days…

rain-washed greenery greedily sprouting forth…

a love-seeking peacock dancing…

a bee-eater diving for its success

and the dragonfly’s failure…

flirtatious swallows riding the airy horses…

a tailorbird throwing loud vocal force

for its 7 gram weight…

a squirrel and a crow fighting for a nut…

a mud-smeared dog losing the force of its barking

against a braying donkey…

paddy standing lugubriously…

and the water sailing above in huge cloudy ships,

ready to melt and shower its love again,

any moment…

֍♠֎

The Lost Love

A dewdrop slips down

the petal of a full-blossomed rose,

It seems like a tear,

A tear for the black bee that came,

sucked juice and was gone.

֍♠֎

Top of Form


Shadows under the Light

There is no perfect darkness,

and hardly complete light,

Not entirely good

and perfectly bad either,

Darkness stands because

the light is at some distance,

And light means

the shadows are yet to crawl near,

Here lies the challenge for goodness,

because bad is just a bit away

to unleash itself and dance and sway.

֍♠֎

The Winter Dawn of My Village

My village under cold, foggy clouds,

Lives, dallies in the wintery days,

The beholder of bare earth and smiling soil

and still closed to the rampaging world,

It’s a small corner of dew, mist, frost and all:

Birds, animals, villagers all surrender to the chill,

They too carry icy shades within:

Uninterested and not much conscious of the ‘hotty modernity’.

The dawn taking a yawn after a night frosty,

Like a curvaceous damsel,

after a dreamful, sweet night,

arms stretched to the vigorous pull of youth,

reddish lips in a tantalizing twisted pout,

and breasts firm against any overture uncouth,

Her dreamy eyes shine with maternity universal,

Ready to save this world from the doomed hate,

Her eyes full of love, smiles and dreams.

The westerly breeze sashaying over the budding wheat

like a dusky, nimble-footed beauty,

The soft touch of her heels on the earth—

soothing, assuaging, healing and comforting,

And the wheat spikes open their eyes

to the maternal touch,

Like an infant moves its wispy, sparse eyelashes.

Arrogant crows fly out of the village,

To those dense plantations afar,

With wings cutting the saffron rays,

Cawing labour they will engage in the whole day

and return with the smell of twilight among tired sunrays,

Choosy parrots fly to tastier trees,

Mother nature has extra-pampered them:

The vagrant beauty of colours red and green,

Even nature seems favouring them

more than the blacks,

So they fly in the opposite direction from the crows,

And why not?

Closer they are to nature

than the rookies showing many characters human

in being retentive, querulous and cunning,

So the greens fly higher than the blacks.

Wool-laden toddlers waddle along the streets,

Like little Eskimos,

Their mothers put extra woollen layers on them:

Maternal care swaddled around them,

While they sneak away like tiny explorers

to see a bit more of this world,

Their aged grandparents, their exact analogues

on the other side of the slope,

warm their fragile, old bones around hookahs in chaupals,

Hollow cheeks buzz with chuckle and logic simple,

Far from the warmth of gushing youthful blood,

They are mere fractions of life,

trying to integrate the group

and form a still-meaningful complete integer,

to live with at least that much of life

that at least would comprise a single, bubbly youth.

The village beauty smiles behind her thin veil:

The moon behind a fluffy curtain of soft clouds,

The sun peering over the cloud’s edge,

The star smiling from the farthest distance,–

The sweet enjoyment of ogling at lotus in hazy waters.

The hurried gait to finish her household chores

looking a bit odd on her fine, work-honed curves,

Her tipsy, honeyed ogles,

potent to infatuate the hardest heart,

just fall on crude work,

The locks of hair with style simplest,

The envy of metropolitan beauties of great care,

Worry not o damsel,

The virgin soil of the village

dances around your work-beaten heels;

a chilly breeze kisses your rosy cheeks;

The tiniest particles of the mist cling

to the single lock out of the veil.

And the sun struggles to rise in the east,

Only to look at your shadow moving graciously.

Yes, such is the winter dawn!

Saffron rays cut across the fog,

Gobble up the last traces of the night;

It comes to my village

like a daughter practicing ‘nature’s care’,

right from her birth in every relation.

The rising sun will dry away the dew, mist and frost,

Seedlings straighten up; the burden is off!

Bravo! Every seed off the peasant’s hand

fights nature to feed the nation,

Salutes! The farmer’s green paint splashed around.

Icy vapours in the village pond

shelter the migrants; many from the Himalayas,

Exiled by the snows,

they live happily, warmly here,

This dawn is proud to host the familiar

crane couple, ducks, pelicans, herons and many more.

Such is my village at dawn,

Ready to go and almost self-sustain,

So few are such places, elsewhere!

֍♠֎

The Light Beyond

There is light beyond

the deepest dark depth,

There is a bright day

after the ghostly haunts of a nightmarish night,

After a barren famished fight,

there is a full-blossomed spring’s delight,

After the pining pangs of separation,

there is a worthy end to the desperation,

After crashing in the gutters,

there is a surge and rise to bathe in holy waters,

After crying convulsions on the lips,

a smile takes honeyed sips,

After the last defeat,

still there is an undying urge to accomplish the feat,

Even when blind with despair,

there is hope hiding and cajoling somewhere,

Even in hate,

love casts its beautiful bait.

֍♠֎

Love-fangs

I feel the shapeless mass of your love,
It creeps like a venomous reptile
through the garden of my heart,
It furiously hisses,
returning my softest kisses,
I bear the toxic marks
left on my skin by your fangs.
Still I carry your poisonous stones
in the soft cradle of my heart.
Why?
Because I have no choice to hate you,
I can just love you!

֍♠֎

The Immortal

I know life has rejected me,
And when death will accept me
that time is yet to be!
Till then, O Sufi, is there any light to see?
Yes brother, there is! 
It’s in being with those

who have been discarded by fate,
Who have laboriously scrawled

and scribbled lifelong
but still have a clean slate;
It’s in smiling with innocent dawns;
It’s in basking in the sunny charms

of sultry, forlorn lawns;
It’s in the faded twinkle of distant stars;
It’s in saying goodbye

to the intrigues of one’s own internal wars;
It’s in being with me,
And the way it is, let it be!

֍♠֎

A Note from Spring’s Deathbed

The spring’s traces last,

Hot summers approaching fast,

Languid notes in the air,

A solitary bird’s forlorn chirping for musical share,

Drowned in stillness,

this late morning bright and fair,

Sky’s dull blue,

Overhanging the earth in paling hue,

But a smaller world is there,

The overall weariness cannot reach where,–

In its self-defined world

in a corner tiny,

The luscious wild flower

still stands brave and shiny.

֍♠֎

The Smile, the Godliness

O thou wind-lashed flower,

Sadistic nature took rapist bites

at your soft petals,

At each bite and cut it laughed

and licked its blood-smeared lips,

You but stood unfazed for

beauty and fragrance.

The storm meanwhile

kept on increasing its fury,

But for how long?

It ran out of its fuel,

And stood panting and drained out,

When the night and the storm died

and a beautiful, warm, sunny day was born,

the profound flower stood majestically resplendent!

Its storm-lashed petals

more beautiful than ever!

Why?

Because never did it let

the smile go off its face!

֍♠֎

The Flower’s Tears

Flowers aren’t supposed to weep,

Even if their petals are vandalized,

As the raping storms

spit all their fury

on their fragrant face.

It’s just for beauty’s sake, they say,

And tears on its petals are no tears,

These are unholy signs of its revolt.

So they just expect it to smile

while their poisonous fingers

greedily tear away petal after petal.

Listen you merciless fools!

A flower bears the pain most!

Even though its unfading smile

never allows it to surface on

its smiling face.

But a flower weeps unseen in the

dark hours of the night,

Humans, the dew-laden petals that you

gratify your senses with

are in fact the tears of that

soft petalous self.

֍♠֎

The Mother

I’m the fire,

Who can fathom my

burning core’s plight?

They dance in my warmth

and see only the light!

֍♠֎

The Bleeding Flower

Flower you were always beautiful!

Those balmy days blossomed your wonderful petals.

Then the weather changed,

Stormy winds, furious storms

took sadistic bites at your soft petals.

Bleeding flower,

You but kept your smile,

Nature’s fury lashed you,

Biting winds lynched you,

Like a sinful rapist they groped you,

You but smiled forgivingly.

Now the sinner stands

robbed of its fury,

And you smile more beautiful than ever.

Love, beauty and harmony prevail,

Hate, anger and lust always fail.

֍♠֎

A Moment’s Pining Call

Staring at the misty past

and forcing myself not to see

the future eager to unfold itself too fast,

I wave at the nostalgic strains

still beckoning and alive,

How I wish I could dive

back into the pools of the past,

To have my moments last

at a place that held me in its cradle soft,

That soulful embrace which still holds me aloft!

֍♠֎

The Last Prayer

It has been months since

I last lit my faith’s lamp,

So many days have passed since

prayers chimed in my dark den’s air damp,

My meditating self,

Now gives atheistic yelp.

Lost my faith!

Lost my prayer!

Lost my rituals!

Lost my meditative trance!

֍♠֎

The Coin

My story is strange, 
To understand it, you need less brains

and more open of a heart, 
I was a coin with lots of shine, 
Then I passed through hundreds of hands

one after the other,–

The moulding darkness gave me fearful creep, 
And I was lying at the top of the mint’s heap, 
Somehow I was given to a young guy, 
Who tossed me in air and made me fly, 
Then I was given to an old lady,
She kept in a place that was very shady, 
I noticed I had lost my shine, 
And I didn’t look young and fine. 
That is because I had grown old, 
Now, I know my life’s story is told,
There are endless scars

and imprints on my soul.

I have lost my value in my own esteem,

But they still haggle over me sometime.

֍♠֎

Oh God, that Hollowness!

Oof that soul entombed in misery!

The ragamuffin, the beggar,

Great potter’s potsherd he was,

Those decaying, yellow teeth

splashed and sprayed this world

with misery and incurable jaundice.

His trifle weight could outweigh

the fattest people in the street,

And eyes ever so colourless

could gobble down springs all.

The ears like the deepest gorges,

could accommodate a billion sympathies

and countless words soft,

The tongue would talk to millions,

if the opportunity arose,

Alas, the milling humanity around

pretended not to be visible at all,

People scampered past with the

careful eyes of a cautious thief;–

saving both their conscience and money.

His emotions lay buried deep

in his famished breast,

This was his treasure trove,

He kept it safe,

Afraid to take them out,

lest they slaughter these as well,

His bleeding heart would have

painted this planet in gloomy red.

A dog, cat poop, wrappers, dust, snoot, phlegm,

And he just another addition to these,

Almost indiscernible in his insect kingdom,–

Dusting, rottening,  petty and cast-out.

The accusing emptiness,

And the hallowed universe around,

Holding his mocking lighthouse,

Throwing feeble, exposing light over the

fallacies lolloping under the abounding waves

of the booming sea of hilarity and well-being.

֍♠֎

The Feminizing Man

Fragrance scented and colours prismatic,

Flowers seduce with surrendering softness

and intoxicating aesthetics,

This alluring, sweet poison slays many,

Parasitically it creeps into

the hibernating, sleepy male vitality,

And the red, gushing blood of sense and sanity

turns into silly swirls of bluish oblivion.

Foolish torrents of bewitching beauty follow,–

A marvellous decolourisation of

flesh, vision and potency!

The woman does the same with the man,–

Her moves lie under the surface,

Letting loose amorous tremors,

The tamed beast clinging to feeble, unmanly chains:

the emotions, cooings and the mellowed stone,

Then she slaughters the prey most manly,

Bravo! Salutes to the femininity:

the hardest heart under the shield softest.

Weakness has its strength in vulnerability,

Don’t mistake power by the steel in muscles,

Soft flowers and seductive women

thrive on the dew shower of temptations,

Eyes thirsty, pining senses;–

The altars of the insected, infatuated masculinity,

More the offerings on the altar,

more the Goddess thrives,

So many wither to bloom a smile

in her sly eyes.

But her demands from the worshipper

are never satiated,–

Greedy Goddess!

She thus hunts around,

But greed can never make one complete,

So she just remains a fraction,

Men cut themselves to the same

to complete her missing portion,

The happy Goddess then

laughs at the follies of the maimed.

Black bee, man sacrifice to

prove the worth of an ounce of femininity,

Rivers eat mountains, while the stones

surrender to the fluidity of the majestic masseur,

The woman meanders to fragment the man,

Making round, harmless, cuddly pebbles.

As the feminine dreams web around,

The ensnared caterpillar hums the songs of love,

The spider salivates and chuckles,

The trap of seduction,

The cobwebs of death,

The river thus triumphantly

rolls on with mighty boulders,

The song of macabre swirling

among the torrential giggle and frightening moan.

Femininity wins through its weakness,

The flowers smile and bloom on showers of tears,

The woman makes the man a means to her end,

Travels on his strong back

to reach her destination

and find the purpose of her life.

֍♠֎

A Brief Love-grip

Love loops around on an early winter day,

In the heart, endless things to say,

Shines a gently warm, bright ray,

Before the icy winters shout, and chuck it all out,

Enjoy and make hay!

֍♠֎

The Whisper

The mighty lord whispers in a soft voice,

‘My son grow thou strong

and sire chances for those without any choice!’

֍♠֎

Sweet Enemy

Though your enemy, I am sweet!

My neck thus deserves a softer treat!

֍♠֎

My Mind, My Buddy

Be the seat of my strength, not weakness.

Be the seat of kindness, not cruelty.

Be the source of light, not darkness.

Be the source of energy, not idleness.

Be the source of creativity, not limited vision.

Be the source of love, not hate.

Be the source of smiles, not tears.

Be the source of happiness, not suffering.

Be the seat of optimism, not pessimism.

Be the seat of gain, not loss.

Be the source of help, not obstruction.

Be the seat of leadership, not just sleepwalk.

Be the seat of a better human being.

Be the source of a more loving person.

O my mind, my seat of potential,

take my journey further.

Choose the better half of all the dualities for me.

One should keep reminding one’s mind.

Repeatedly.

Daily.

With eyes closed with a fervent request.

It’s a very nice, nutritious pre-breakfast food.

֍♠֎

The Voice Inside

Forget about the hoot and holler

emanating from the world outside,

And give an ear to the soft and murmurous

cooings emanating from the soul,

It has a soft and sympathetic

message for you only,–

your most personal message,

meant only for you,

Listen to these delicate chimes,

It’ll help you in finding peace in chaos,

In getting a foothold in the stampede,

In feeling rest, repose and respite

amidst constant buffeting by the world around,

It’ll help you in breaking

the hardest of superficial layers,

which suffocate and limit your identity,

And put you face to face with

your true self, your real worth,

Listen to it, close your eyes,

And pay attention with all your heart,

Just for a change,

don’t look far, look closest at yourself,

It’ll be as uneventful as looking

at a dust particle around your feet,

But it changes the universe for you,

You will have the biggest message

in the softest of whispering phrases!

And it’ll help you in finding yourself.

֍♠֎

Jewelled Vagary by Nature and Man

White-pearled necklace smiles,

Of cobweb, with dew beading it,

Silvery, on a bonsai-like acacia,

In murky morning, fog and cold.

Prickly branches sprout, frozen,

Empty-headed, standing still and mute,

Like a bribed beauty silent;

Jewelled throats disclose nothing.

The fog-vaulted sky above,

Vapours riding nuclei unseen,

Making things around appear as sprites,

And the necklace among the bones and thorns.

Gallowed! Thus serene forever,

Like the ever-impressed eyes portrayed,

Follow which the observer always,

Greedy to be jewelled more.

Nature’s goldsmithy and the man’s:

The necklace in the thorns,

The other making the skin prized more,

Beauty thus defined, thrives on donated bounties.

֍♠֎

Drawing, Sketching Webs of History

People come and go,

with genealogies spinning history,

Everything changes to survive,

Similarly, man becomes his opposite more.

Fast riding jockey he is,

Sticks to the saddle of time,

His horse trampling the turf,

And the cheers eating the dust around;

The ‘eagle’s eye’ spotting the winner

among the beasts riding the same,

Gallops match the applauds around

to cut the finishing line first.

Whoever may be the lucky one,

It’s nothing but simply

a line drawn over the last one,

And many parallels following.

What did the winner get?

Nothing but the smallest

glimpse of others doing the same;

Irony drips from the dusted moments,

Look, the victor ponders back the maximum,

Trickles which to zero

for the last one cutting across.

A trophy, a V-sign, a horse’s smile,

That is what they give him,

And some rest on the podium;

That is what life is,

Dropping every skill of ours

on the back of a beast

to carry us as a victor,

Half-man, half-beast,

we leave nothing but litter around;

Exhausted and throbbing hearts.

So much of the course is

trampled to death,

only for the thinnest line

connected by similar tangential lines;

With milestones of eulogy,

And battlefields in between,

This is what we call

history, progress and more.

֍♠֎

Death in a Forest

Night was falling in the jungle,

With stars smiling from a cold sky,

Early mist making a drink

to inebriate the trees through the night,

And the leaves preparing for a dewy bath.

A dark man matching the night’s colours,

Stumbled across the decaying windfalls,

His skin clad in more darkness,

White teeth flashed to life,

Like water in the abyss of a well,

A sigh of agony poured out

warmth in the imposing cold.

All vestiges fading out of sight,

Yet, two gentle eyes like an elephant’s said,

‘Live and let live’;

His burning self gave

some warm solace to the dewy, cold leaves,

His bright foot-soles drummed

on the decaying leaves,

Sowed seeds of life among death and decay.

The music approaching the forest’s centre,

With stars applauding

and the trees swaying to the tune,

Nature styled his hair:

Curls, locks, dust matched the jungle’s disarray,

He stumbles now more

and finally sits under a tree,

Sleeps then to eternity,

The last trace of life mixed

with the darkness around;

The morning came to enliven everything,

but not the last trace of night.

֍♠֎

Escapades from the Pyre

Hot ash of the cremated,

There lies the voice of the Himalayas,

Stood which rock firm,

Now turned into grains few

by the holy flames,

Fire ate the fire—

an elaborate oasis

combusted to a desert small.

Hot air rising upwards

with liberating soul

and mourners’ tears,

To make rain of it,

which will shower upon a flower

manured by the cemetery’s ashes;

‘Will’ dies never,

The passion of a life whole

now forms the flower of a single day!

֍♠֎

Jailed by Destiny

With every sinew losing out,

There lies the nest of my hopes,

Scattered like dying, gasping fishes,

Destiny chuckles over the vaporizing,

fading signs of its opposition.

Why not? Sinners are those

who toil against the lines of fate

drawn on our palms;

The web of destiny

that limits and chains ventures all,

And the puppets merely dancing to its tune.

Every pulse, dying or born,

Here in this world, or the other;

From the first cry to the last in an abyss,

We are just tools in the great reaper’s hands,

The cruel General leads an army

comprising we the puny foot-soldiers,

Fighting against each other;

Instruments and weapons in millions of hands,

The leader uses one to cut, thrash and mow the other.

Each hope and cause great

turn the sins bigger for the mighty ringleader,

And I am the biggest sinner,

With my misplaced ideals and misfitted compassion;

Now I stand amidst my garbage,

Unworthy, hopeless and thoroughly beaten.

֍♠֎

To Talk Small; To Talk to Earth

Hiccups come whooshing like arrows,

Bowed backs, tension-stringed souls,

The tension stored from the time immemorial,

And the sobs go squelching.

Ye squeak only, bad marksmen!

Your shots just firecrackers

around the towers of the exploiters,

The towers hanging sprucely, with talons.

Tag-rags! Thou from yore,

From womb to the grave,

Cry just one by one;

Individually and separately,

Pouring saline anguish on wasted cheeks.

Ever eager to attack

the heavenly vaults for the evils all;

Hands ready to break His head,

Never but the real cause lying nearest.

You murder prophets easily,

Never but support the champion of liberty,

So you remain as ever,

Ugh, historically the same beaten class!

Yoke fellows! Please let Him rest,

If eager to weep yet,

Then cry ghoulishly in a chorus,

Like Shiva’s drumbeats.

Or waste not anguish in tears,

And noises that fall on ears deaf,

Shout Tally Ho! For history’s sake,

Let it progress by a different type of change.

֍♠֎

Fenced Jaunties

Billions jangle, survive, obey

the instructions of a single urge;

Of infinity,

finites which itself

by kraaling simpletons in a common craze,

It lounges to exist forever,

And the night-walkers sleep-walking,

Moving in the shadows

and believing it to be a bright sunny day.

The ever prudent God, the shrewd muleteer!

Measures His fathomless depths

with puppets playing on strings of ecstasy and tragedy;

The luminary lights a bit of the stage,

Death and darkness but circle around,

where the light of reason and faith

escapes with the escaping soul.

The five senses slipping over the oily scalp;

Tongues turned steely by quoting borrowed words,

Nostrils get clogged with the smell of decay,

Eyes take the last shot of the puzzles around,

Ears drum for the last to the eternity’s beat,

The touch of mystery leaves more clueless,

And all it turns out is a

journey from nowhere to nowhere.

Sheep peeping across the fences barbed,

Hoy! Bleating jargon longing to voice the truth last;

The final mystery meanwhile

buried underwater like the lotus roots,

Above, a water lily blooms under the owl light,

Excitedly flickering to pamper

the Himalayan vanities scattered around.

֍♠֎

Beloved, Thou art Life’s Sestet

Your love became soul’s food,

O my lyrical lyre special;

Intoxicated was every pore and cell,

Mind lost its relevance,

Only heart ruled over the show.

Body vibrated with thy name,

Love-blinded, the eyes saw only your dreams,

Thy voice drummed on the plane of my being,

Millions of nerves sensed only you.

Time and this world sped off for me,

I got time-frozen for the eyes deep and brown;

Red, curvy lips eager for a smile,

That moony face bewitched me.

Path’s prickles smiled like you,

I stepped over, where was the pain!

The mind didn’t reason with heart anymore,

Even in sadness I glowed with visions thine.

Now, away you are; ever to be seen?

The soul cries, lynches each second passing by,

But, thou are my last lines,

And will remain so, till I die.

֍♠֎

An Atom Leaps, Snakes Hiss Around

Purple clouds, fires ablaze,

The atom danced profusely,

The soil around its feet got burnt,

The choreographer talked peace in future,

Peace! In invisible poisoned wombs,

Not in the beak of the pigeon white,

The reactor fumes coloured it black,

The black messenger flew around for fifty years,

Talking of peace with its

tearing talons ready to prey upon

anyone who won’t believe in manufactured peace.

Death centred on missiles privileged

blackened earth dark without peace,

A trauma of half century,

When thousand Buddhas smiled and feigned peace,

A peaceful country now becomes

more so with another noise underground,

And lo an earthquake endangers all

who had been made too safe by

the numerous stockpiles around;

The nuclear snakes,

which can bite for once and all,

Point now poison in an earthworm,

Why not? A few furrows by the latter

lay bare the hollowness beneath.

The nation that never hissed,

Only jumped like a rabbit under attack,

Now takes shelter in the steely womb,

which the python cannot digest,

Nor can play the cat and mouse;

And the mighty keepers of peace

go making floods of tears around.

֍♠֎

Destinies in Drunken Laps

Like a drunken old man,

The tree sways to the December breeze,

Intoxication of age, alcohol in one,

The other with the spirit of the air,

A boozy synchronism!

The old man and the tree,

Winy hearts and the swings.

Legs unsteady; walked too much,

The tree too, does it

sillily in the syrupy cold,

Veins and vegetations drunk!

Synchronicity involves two more elements:

A caterpillar among the leaves,

Clutching like the grandson

in the grandpa’s fragile, shaky arms,

And so the swaying moments go on,

The tree and the old man gyrate,

The infant, the caterpillar hold.

Really gentle is the breeze,

Makes not noise among the leaves,

Soufflés inside the body old,

Gentle and feeble same,

Very calm and noiseless!

Some leaves now and then

break off and fall serenely;

A sylvan goddess plucking them,

Similarly, the likes of the old man,

Full with age, go heavenwards,

The leaves around the caterpillar’s,

The old men around the boy’s,

Calmly fall one by one,

But they hold on,

The caterpillar and the child.

֍♠֎

Firefly, Thou art Life’s Sparkle

Firefly, you are nature’s cutest sparkle,

Twinkling to celebrate the mysterious wedding,

And dance to the tune of crickets and katydids,

Thy single leap in the air

matches ours from the caves to Edison.

Glow the branches like a Christmas tree;

Swirl over lake muddy like a lighthouse;

Caged in the puffs of hair, thou smile,

Starry beetle, thou cast a dim light

on an eulogy unknown

on a grave remote in the forest.

The wind whirls around you,

But you still glow like a candle

fighting for life by the deathbed,

Glow thou in the haze of winters,

Like the auroras of the Poles.

On the tender palm of a child,

Thou glow still to light the future

printed on the rosy, soft skin,

Thou have passed many hands,

And read the lines of

Hitlers, Gandhis and many more.

Sparkle like a gem from

the poorest of a thatched hut,

Make them the Kings of the world,

Shikara, cross, dome and stupa,

You sit on all of them

and still retain your real self.

From the moments of ecstasy supreme

to the predator’s clutch,

thou only smile,

To light and glow,

Touches which a lonely heart

to make it alive and hope again.

֍♠֎

Beyond Moon and up to the Soul

The lonely star twinkles for me,

Shining still brighter than the full moon,

Full hearted in the cold, milky sky,

While others sleep to the moon’s lullaby.

It casts pointed, long shafts of arrows,

Over chilly, rounded, moonlit landscape,

Engraving rays play filigree

with the ghosts loathing light, but out now!

Meanwhile, ogles this world just the beauty ‘round’;

Encircling lewd stupidity,

Destined to beat the same path,

The same journey and its similar vanity.

I welcome the winks from the

fluctuating one, whose needly rays venture into

the deepest corners of the heart;

Ditches, ravines unfortunate,

where the round beauty’s shower reaches never,

So they also smile as fairy rings,

Like prosperous moonlit palaces;

Caper and pearl in abalone come to life,

As its pointed rays caress the prickles

and seep through the entrance narrow.

Needle away the fear in a nest,

As parents return not and the nestlings huddle;

Peep through the thatched roof,

Help the feeble lamp inside,

Battle then the corners dark;

Streak into the narrowest gorges in minds,

where luxurious moony rays reach never,

Star, thou light up

far more than we ever believe.

֍♠֎

At What Cost, O Thou City?

Lost world or call them worlds,

On the pavements, by flyovers,

In slums, by traffic lights,

On railway stations, and bus stands;

A trail ablaze,

Howling, hissing in its smouldering stupor.

Serpentine curves of life amidst

roads glutted with tired travellers

and buildings choked with bleak elegance;

Each bend thrusts a shock wave,

Badged with the numbers of struggle

people falter, bawl, hackle and sneer

with thick-veined throats and emptying souls.

The urban rosary and its beads:

The halt imposed by a red light,

A mother in torn, soiled clothes,

He/she held in arms and rags,

Pleading in front of the windscreens,

And the wealthy rag-picker

searching lust in the garbage;

Green light beckons the stampede once again,

And taking a carnal sip for free

the already privileged reveller jolts away.

Beggars feigning sleep among foot taps;

Humanity dancing to the tunes of hard heels,

Wheels rumble overhead,

As the trams screech and cringe over the bridge,

Killing by sparing them to live in a mass grave.

A big car chirrs and whirrs

and smiles glossily to defracture the void,

The puffiness hovering around the wheel,

Alas, spacious more for

accommodating the emptiness of the soul;

Rich eulogies for the poor graves around.

Lost worlds piled up in a bigger one,

Fed on something squeezed tight and narrow;

Ghostly and visible not,

Its spirits turned wooden,

And multiplying at mere pin-drops,

What to talk of human efforts, Metro?

֍♠֎

The Winter Sunset in our Fields

The night is taking birth,

Sunset is imminent thus,

Over the fields cropped,

And silvery mist upcoming,

With the silent majesty of

the sunbeams gently smiling still.

The day, like a minimalist,

Looks sunward to get

yellowish orange traces last,

The sundown moment!

Mingling day and night,

With the sunbeams garlanding,

Which one? Day or night?

Guava, blackberry, mango,

Wild not, but tamed in the orchards,

Stand silent and still,

Their natural character somewhat lost,

Which they laugh away

for some purpose human,

They with the brethren wild

along the canal embankments,

Stand as spectators for the great handover.

Wheat saplings turned plantlets now;

Few inches tall and strong,

To go into the dark

without crying; no fear.

The cawing of a raven,

And a parrot’s cherishing tone,

All speak of a day gone,

Distant howl of an owl

from a lone banyan big,

Sounds like a factory hooter,

To awaken the ploughman

from his submission to the work hard,

And realize the world beyond the field.

The long-shadowed sun picture:

A weaver bird’s nest

hanging still and safe,

Similarly, the mushroom huts

warm with the lights glowing now,

All seem ready to face

the upcoming dark for the day next.

A cuckoo sings

a little song of bravery

for the hut, the nest

and everything at the dark front.

A crow ogles at the subsiding

redness in the south-west,

Whose vanishing traces

leave its eyes parted wide

and smirking with amazement,

Suddenly, realizing the need of time,

Off it goes with a flutter.

This slow acceleration of

the day into the night;

The gentle fluidity of the light and the dark

embracing and melting into each other,

The gentlest of a brace,

The slow pace,

Unnoticeable bonhomie,

And biggest will be the change;

The change as snaily

as some minutest growth to the wheat saplings.

Thus the sunset is imminent,

Moments stand calm and meditative;

Like we at the birth time

know nothing of the life ahead.

The cool air and the mist

with their dense brush,

Paint a picture tranquil,

With the protagonists standing still,

Save some small movement

among the boyish wheatlings,

And the ‘painted lady’ butterflying.

The sun goes down further,

Its rays now dissolve

in a woodpecker’s eyes

perched atop a tall eucalyptus;

Undefined colour of the painter’s disk,

Thus, the sunset is imminent;

The scarecrow in a field,

The proxy owner in the farmer’s absence,

Begins now to enliven,

With each degree of the sundown,

It enlivens more and more

to protect the child crop;

The farmer’s self symbolized through

the effigy turned human,

Or ghostly, in the dark.

The rim goes below,

Thus it’s all over for the day!

The sadness of the moment,

Or the joy of the job done,

And they all stand sunless,

In a state of sweet sorrow

for the celestial minstrel gone,

But still the moment is

pleasing for the soul.

Although everything

may not glow like a diamond,

But like an ill-formed sapphire,

It has its maze,

Where everything has got

mixed feelings, mixed appearances.

֍♠֎

Believer, Atheist or Agnostic! Which Path?

Religion is made a spade

in the hands which hypnotize

the masses blindfolded, hoping for cures;

Remedies for why, what, when…

The religionist!

The crowd before the sermonizing hands,

The lucky ones looking for

good fate’s another instalment,

And the majority begging their first,

Denied to them till now.

Awe-struck!

Stupefied thus, they squat,

The mighty grip around the tool’s handle

meanwhile rakes up further ritualistic earth,–

The great spadework!

By the hands preaching, hypnotizing the audience,

who cannot see beyond the fence,

Get up when they after the show,

See apostles build up,

answering meaninglessly

the great queries of what, when, why, how…

And more lines get written to theology,

The magic book of all panaceas.

The Pandora box!

Opens with uncountable spectacles,

And the tears of agony, joy, everything,

The chorus now grows further,

Politicians, bureaucrats, corporate…

The expertise! The hypnotizers join

with their ever-elusive tete-a-tete;

Spreads His gospel theatrically,

And the mass stupefaction multiplies.

The great religious band!

A pair of hands symbolizing God’s,

Music in the background by the experts,

And the hypnotized cloud enlarges

from the religious opera house,

Reaches the lone hut, villages,

states, countries and continents,

And finally the farthest universe,

Enlarges it too much,

To infinity!

The hypnotized universe!

Ever multiplying talks about why, what, when…

Stamps from the Pandora box:

Devotional, devout, pious, religious,

After the show, they all come out,

Stamped foreheads, the believers!

Beguiled by the tricks of the gloved hands,

If hypnotized not still,

They bark at him ‘Atheist’,

The one who questions what, when, why…

This unstamped, unorthodox outcaste,

Counters the divine oratory

with sizzling counter-points,

Questions upon answers to what, when, why…

And they neigh in desperation.

Opens the atheist now

the Pandora box of his own,

The box with tricks to

to undo all the great work done,

Another magic book!

But for the negative infinity

by a ‘single god’ over all the godheads,

To dehypnotize the public,

Too great an effort!

But still a small whiff,

Unable to create a storm

of negative winds,

and negative why, what, when…

Devotional winds blow around, meanwhile,

So what do we have now?

The majority hypnotized, blindfolded,

And someone in tantrums,

Arguing testily and

striking as many heads as possible,

To awaken them from the slumber,

Alas! He but is negative more, restless more.

What do we have now?

A dish with spice:

Orthodoxy spiced with unorthodoxy,

Hence tasty, juicy more.

Someone is also sitting somewhere,

His existence too earthly,

The real dweller of the earth!

The agnostic!

Questions or their counters

don’t reach this self-religioner,

So, worry not about what, when, why…

Beyond the confines of luck and destiny,

This conscious, relinquishing soul

has outflown too much from inside,

Vacuum thus created, where

cravings die and magic tricks fail.

֍♠֎

Reaching Heavens with Wings

There I zoom like a bird,

Imagination matching its flight,

Aerial view of the panorama below,

With earth laughing, cajoling,

But, I sense the futility of its smile,

Which myriads personify by

living, sweating in the furrows.

Bird’s eye! Yes, I just see

the scenery general most,

Without ‘particularity’ any,

Strikes which at the chance first,

No, I don’t create particularity,

Not of woman and things tempting,

My ‘bird’s eye’ slipping over the edges,

Making curves of generality,

So universal is my love,

Not to be caught by a single heart.

O man, fly like a bird,

With wings carrying across

the infinity of the universe;

Never become stones of personality,

Bound by specialities many,

Whom many things strike

like bugs eating the dead;

When every incident and trend

lynch the prisoner chained.

So fluff away like a bird,

At the trivial most instance to save life;

I do the same like a bird,

Shy away from everything,

And fly away, tail twitching,

To the horizons where nothing pinches;

No love, hate or nymph-like thing

cling to the mind to create trauma,

Yes, I wish to be only such!

֍♠֎

Our Existence Torched: The Life

Life is like a shooting meteor;

Just a whizzing-past star,

Whose starting point nobody sees,

But of course, visibility of the end,

Wow! Abruptness with a vengeance,

And wormy annihilation in

capacious, unbound space.

We are the shots from the unknown;

Intentional or accidental?

Predetermined or chancy?

Willy-nilly, we just roll over

the calamitous mud of the slippery path.

Life sparkling with a fizz,

Pain, joy, smiles, weepings and ecstasies

swoop like a meteoric trail in the sky;

Born to soil the earth,

Like the broken star’s residue,

We add to the primal matter.

From unknown to the unknown,

We are known as a ‘life’,

Just as the luminosity of

a shooting, breaking star.

֍♠֎

The Old Man and the Hut

The old man and the hut,

Reed and grass sheltered

like the old bones in his body frail,

And both of them hold

on the brink of life and death,

being and non-being,

Wispy fleecy in a hush,

Penned down by the destiny when

she was on flying clouds

and wanderlust.

The old man, nobody knows

from where he came,

Stranger even than a foreigner;

Wind-fallen in his own land,

A pedigree, on the verge of

ending on his side;

Nobody to inherit the wishy-washy shelter.

Nature habituated to them,

The old man and the hut,

A small brook, a forest averagely thick,

And a loneliness persisting,

Save a sortie or two

by an occasional adventurer,

Who may come to spread the self.

Nothing changes here,

Except time through his wrinkles

and some sinew blown from the hut,

A marvellous, fluid constancy of nature:

Same chirps of the birds,

Same bubbling in the brook;

Also the same generality,

Except one particularity,

The old man and the hut.

Wintery shivers in his humble bed,

With eyes staring at the roof,

Giving strength to it

against the raindrops naughty,

Longing to play with him.

In summers, he sleeps outside,

In the open, under the starlight,

Too much light above!

But alas, too far!

Spread out thus in the open,

A look into the stars above

with the eager eyes of a child,

Then close with a peep

into the depths of age,

Thus sleep layers over him,

He knows not when,

And where, nobody cares.

֍♠֎

Sympathy Game

Disability, permanent or short-lived,

Is a cause of distress extreme,

For, sulks one in the ripped self,

A mere breaking star among shiny thousands.

Satisfaction of the competition

being the fuel of life,

As nothing else is society

but relentless rivalry among the capable.

Abhorred is robust and fit here,

Know they, fitness is nothing

but a hindrance in their path,

And cursing goes everyone.

No time for the interests common,

As heart has shrunk much,

Bellicose is man, bellows only;

Bereaved human is rival such.

Ah! The redeeming glimmer exists,

Thank God! Thrown is someone

out of the race mad; abed is faculty,

Sprouts then the sympathy fountain.

Emotions, adages pour out

for the poor player out of the race,

Admire they the infirmity in him,

Already dead he is without playmanship.

It’s the disease and disability,

Making you suffer lot,

Yet smile at it,

For it has aroused an emotion precious.

֍♠֎

When I was Small

Bird was I, flew tirelessly

in what was to become golden past,

And the innocent, humane most,

Matured are the wings now,

But lost is ‘big’ in its bigness.

World was then,

as small as me, and beautiful;

Distorted are both today,

As I trample the ‘soft me’,

And the world grows up harsh.

Things only trivial now,

Hugely inspired that delicate heart,

The urge today being fat;

Lost is imagination and heart shrunk,

Mind has become iron clod almost.

Weak was then I,

for flying too high and far,

I flap wings too much today,

But tired I am,

as wings fall short of the desires.

Then I had only heart,

Too big and I lived,

I only survive today

with a tiny heart;

Vast is my mind today.

Frightened was I then of

most common, simple things,

But now, bold I am,

not to fear any inhumanity,

Present of that past, I am.

֍♠֎

Heaven under the Hot Sun

The sun marches north; sultry evenings,

Bulging wheat pods await rituals last,

The wizened golden stalks ready

to surrender the fecundity crowning them;

Farmers cut, gather, reap and mow

with bull’s eye and parental care,

Birds filch every lost grain in the soil,

Crops smile daughterly in the days bright,

Hats off! Accept they the rites last with smiles.

A dog, dry-mouthed, awaits master’s lunch,

Birds, their beaks full, ferry the cargo to the nests,

A bunny runs in the fields bare,

looks for some hideout any;

Above, a gibberish crow caws a laugh,

A sparrow looks into a waterhole,

Few drops there and a hornet gnarls over,

A child plays under a tree’s hot shadow,

The air dances around the working mother;

Plays with pollen in hair long,

And she doing filigree with grains,

The locks of her hair try to protect

the ‘moon’ shining in the glaring day,

She jerks them away and smiles.

֍♠֎

Thrives my Village

Life and people stroll easily,

Fast and furious urbanity outside

being the sole kicker at the easy pace,

It’s a rickety creaking pace,

Measuring minutes in hours,

Hours in days,

It retains its creaky pace

even if the land share may shorten,

or enforcing come the modernity’s grip.

They are all here,

and the same poor villagers,

Nature’s cruel bite or the soft hand,

It’s all but life whole;

Be the dripping roofs,

Mud in the streets,

Or ‘life drops’ in the fields,

All are the basics here.

The children too simple

and the creations of adaptations,

Stuffed in the studies captive

wait they for the last bell,

God’s pity or else,

Weak and empty they are not,

and will survive through life all.

The elders amazed at the change,

Try to catch up with the new,

But survive they only,

Age is a curse,

for it deprives one of the productivity,

Outcaste they are;

assemble and remain in a unified maze.

Simplest is the society here,–

The psyche prone to ignore,

The hands eager to work more,

And hence the life going with easy lore.

֍♠֎

Footsteps Lost

Walking I was, some day,

Along a track; a tracery it was

of those who passed in the past;

‘Hurried only they,’ I mused; left poor trail,

Mingled which easily in the earth.

The beaten dust beneath looked

easy for a venture fresh,

Swayed I with pomp and pride,

for easy was the poor path to tread;

And admiring all, went I with a happy song.

The soil below seemed

only poorly tottered in the past,

As no footprint was distinct,

I will leave a permanent one,

Thought I, proud of youth and time.

Praised I everything,

Fresh and exuberant all,

Trying I was, to put

steps distinct, firm most,

So that mingle they not in dust soon.

Alas! Pinched the sun bitterly,

Shrewd wind howled; Hated I all,

Lost rhythm and balance, and tottered,

Vanished my footprints right there,

Sadly sighed I for their short span.

֍♠֎

Live Bright in Dark

Dream it was, happened

between conscious and unconscious,

Lost I was in gloom, but

made it the flaccid self alive,

Passing was the night and

lying I was, stretched piteously.

Weak to the extreme;

Lined horizontal I was and dormant,

Existed so low, puny and dwarf,

But raised it me, telling

so little was left of the night;

Awake! Compensate the scrawny past,

I now realised, obscured was I by

my own fears in the darkness of night,

So low I’d made myself,

And piteously near to the ground.

Certainly some were there,

Who valiantly fought the gloom,

And were alive among the dead,

Realised I, lived they more,

Enjoyed the panorama swathed in darkness,

Made they full use of the pitch dark,

While the rest slept among the dog’s bark.

Vertical I turned myself,

Decided to be among the few,

Little was left of the night,

And lived then brightly,

With that great dream

shining in my eyes.

֍♠֎

Friendship Unsocial

A lot of relations throng,

God creates some,

Draw we some in the social garb,

But nothing relates humans,

as does friendship divine.

Lynched by formality is this world,

For nothing is society but rules of convenience;

The individuals form society by

becoming ceremonious, social to all,

Doctrined are thus the relations here.

But, friendship evades laws,

Most informal as it is,

Sheds away all cautioned, decorated self;

Enlarges the individual’s scope with soul freed,

Suffocated who earlier with the chained self.

All behave stilted, skewed here,

Some for their own greed,

Also, some for others’ harm,

Thus framed in cunningness becomes each,

As nothing else is society.

But friends share all,

Break they walls of social norms and etiquette,

Multiplies individuality to

become a spacious whole,

Ethereal is this ‘unsocial’ supplement.

Many envy the enhanced persona;

Individuality lost among the friends,

But, the enlarged self never

goes astray; such is

friendship, fracturing formal rules.

֍♠֎

Humane is My Village

The air is laden with cooperation,

No thorny apathy;

No mob to throng the cornered self,

And murderous individualism axing hearts,

Here, we have a mixed self: the kind behemoth.

Neither bucolic love and unity whole,

Nor nucleated as in concrete jungles;

Limited is the spectrum; holds which

tender human bond still strong, and

live we all in slow majesty of decent unconcern.

The hunger and thirst for electricity and water,

Though dents the moral fabric a bit,

But in patience and forbearance the real self prides—

To bear all hardships and deprivations;

And adapt to disadvantages all.

The people still carry habits, conventions old,

Burdened further by the stuff new,

Still, carry they the rusted self with rural pomp,

Habituated to ignore and move on,

Veneers which as rough pride of the ruralites.

The commuters to the city carry old bags,

Hoping to fetch something new,

The very same villagers still they are

whose rough-hewn character

breathes with unease in the city big.

Still able to smile and laugh,

Holding a big open heart

in its tanned, work-beaten, hairy chest,

Priceless it is for the modern world,

Very few as there are places such.

֍♠֎

The Little Sparrow

Passed the long stormy night,

The tiny sparrow saw a world,

Strange and scary enough to turn him

worried for the first time in life.

The sunrays ended the gloom,

Darker was the clouded night,

Light brought but misery more,

Far away was he from his little nest,

‘The night storm took away everything,’

Sighed he,

His little body aching due to the strikes

by the unseen drops in the dark,

Aching were the delicate feathers,

due to the buffeting wind,

Shivered the little one,

under the impacts huge.

Remembered he,

how a watery gust

blew away their nest in the dark,

In just one pitiless moment,

lost was the warmth of his siblings,

And gone was parental protection,

Thrown away they were into the night,

as the tree lost its footing.

Played he always there,

Never thought or worried,

Realized he now the opposite,

Piteously ruffled was the fur,

Distorted were feathers,

Desperately he looked for his family

in a nest still intact nearby,

It was a replica of their own world,

Wept the little one with its poor whole,

Thought, he will die.

֍♠֎

The Shepherd Boy

Lying was he in nature’s lap,

While his sheep grazed in

warmth early of a November sun,

Femininely undulating hillside it was,

Rolling pastures,

Overlooking thick-wooded shadowy vales.

The rock beneath gave all he needed:

Felt its hugging warmth and support hard,

Swirling came the breeze by the valley,

Intoxicating it was, as the bright sunrays

stole the bitter pinch.

Shared he the perfect calm,

His herd bleating in harmony,

Rubbing against each other and gambolling,

Running came a little lamb,

Licked his hands,

The master surrendering to the

titillating tinker of love and peace.

Gazed he skywards lazily,

His eyes saturated with nature,

Very thin foamy clouds trailed

across the vast blue unknown,

Same was his existence here.

Faced as he the serenity above,

Forgot the self, shone as his face

under the great fire’s light above,

Flew kites tirelessly there,

He too, with imagination unchained.

The wood below across the valley,

Sang with the season;

Some sound broke the silence now and then,

But sweet it was,

As nature was playing with itself.

֍♠֎

Rain, or Not?

Poor farmers provoked the monsoon,

For it’s their last savoir

despite the modernity all,

Farms, cattle, land lifeless feared the burning sand,

Looked meekly for the hope last.

Then came the respite thundering,

Healing them like mother’s kiss;

Hayricks, animals, mud-houses,

All made merry with jumpy Utopia,

But to a point only,

Because beyond that misery stares starkly.

Starts the spiritual plight again,

But for the opposite now,

Fee-fawing scarecrow turns the blessing,

As the little life of before,

Gets stalled by the gushing torrents,

Heresy turns all for the low-borns,

It’s a world swinging to the extremes,

Never allowing them the stable life of balmy

balance in the middle.

Viciously hammered all with the season—

Paddy appearing just grass over the water sheet,

The cattle gone ownerless,

And the farmers working tirelessly to

drain the great solvent away,

Now they pine for the dry earth;

Dreams of dry, buffeting, blinding sands,

Because water is the foe now.

Zoomed then the drama official,

In all its hypocritical sheen,

Came the dirty hand gloved nicely,

The chameleon offered the rites soft;

Joined mankind nature to plunder emotions.

But the poor people new,

The curse was no irresolvable puzzle,

Hide which can in the nature’s maze,

It was simply a man-made flood;

a common way of

saving a great city from getting flooded

by diverting the rich waters

to the poorer fates.

֍♠֎

Tolerance Divine

Bears society the onslaught,

Abound ‘isms’ around,

Suppress they the kind, loving natural self,

Dead sea are they,

Drowned is man in,

Modernity aids the evils old,

Making them almost immortal.

Shrinks the world today

with a deadly spasm,

Its small size

not a sign of humanity broad,

But a stone like

exploding dead apathy,

Useless is the human real

for the ultramodern heart,

Centuries tread away,

Tangled is man more;

Inhuman and intolerant manifold.

Yes! The only hope being

the tolerance divine;

The thing humane most,

Able to do good to all.

The chances to survive lie

not so in modernity,

As in being a human real,

Intolerant who is not

like a hardy machine soulless.

֍♠֎

That Great Flight

Merrily gushed the air,

Happily gyrated the tree compassionate,

Shook the nest; the nestlings became aware

of both good and bad comingled in nature.

Far away were the parents,

Laboriously engaged in ripe corn,

The farmer’s little son watched

the birds old, yet littlest to him!

Flew he them away unwillingly,

Due to father’s past rebukes,

Subdued which his innocence to give up

fancy and realize the ways of the old.

Flew then the group,

to that dense wood far,

Attracted which always

the little boy’s dreamy self.

Flew he also, one day,

On foot to catch his fancy,

Lagged behind but the poor,

for we humans trudge the earth only.

Realized the bird couple,

the plight innocent of the child,

Melt heart theirs for the child,

The same were in the nest.

Flew they slow and halted on the way,

To allow the man’s child to catch up,

Joined bird-human to fly,

Delighted which the mother earth.

The boy found himself in a dream;

Stood under the tree,

The birdie kids flapped their wings,

And parentally sang the bird couple.

֍♠֎

The Weeping ‘Dead Place’

Solitary is the place,

Left out almost as a grave,

Comes nobody to live here,

As if a cemetery it is,

Beyond the nature-human tussle of life.

Pulled it never the time’s leg,

So passed it swiftly most;

Nothing blossomed here,

Which could drag along,

And force the time to stay and pause.

Shrubs, arid semi,

Rocky foothills small,

Faded grass, poor earth’s robe,

Sulks which in clumps,

at places here and there.

Chokes the wind to sing

the prayer for the dead,

Sunrays fall in impassivity,

And wail burningly,

Above is the sky forlorn and discharmed.

Thorny branch sheds tears

motherly for the birds,

But come they not in

the poor mother’s clumsy lap;

Play they in gaudy shades elsewhere.

Calls it the humans;

feebly crying to catch someone’s attention,

But, unbothered is everyone;

Man as well as nature,

All avoid this place.

֍♠֎

Zeroed Self for the Crane Couple

The winter is ageing,

The small heaven sulks here,

Wheat’s seedlings strong now,

Dew feeds grass healthy,

Meekly await they, only you,

Yes, away you are! But where?

Winter always seemed natural,

Started with your arrival—

Legs long, wings big and beaks strong,

Made you look a bossy bird,

Echoed the horizon with your resounding cree…k,

Nothing is same without you.

What is this poor night

without those clarion calls?

Sailed which across the dark,

Now, the same night with

countless twinkling lamps above,

Alas! Missing is its pride.

So dull is the cold rain,

Drops waste without wetting your fur,

Ah, what luck of those

mingled which in your shabby coat!

Now die they in earth,

Tears are they for a chance missed.

Moon cared not about its diminishing size,

As you turned the crescent brighter,

Your gentle movements under

the chilly night played with solitude,

You alone were there to share its sorrow,

Empty now, and suffers alone.

Then, the sun played with earth;

Your shadow proved its essence,

Now, looks it timidly below,

Lost is its identity without you;

Nobody big like you is here

to play with the shining rays.

Red adorned you around the head,

The sky lost its colours in yours bluish gray,

The humans may envy size and

the stormy wind around the wings,

Even other delicate feathers looked strong,

Now, just poor birds are they.

Those long flights brought

the fragrance of land distance,

United was my country,

due to your migrations across it,

We felt unity in diversity,

Landed you down as you here.

Thy long strides measured the land,

Its vastness was proved by you,

Alas, lies it worthless now!

Unfortunate mother, without baby

to measure its maternal depth,

Away are you! Survive or not?

Little was your world,

despite all those bigs about you,

Bird’s vapour eyes you were not,

As, lesser was that scary alertness,

And still more, and more, as

I approached you with my humanness.

At a certain night

you tugged at my heart through the ears,

Heart’s imagery it was or else,

Maybe just a deep sigh of the past,

I don’t know:

At the zero hour

zeroed my imagination and reality.

֍♠֎

The Human Coronet

So strange are we humans,

Rule a swooning world by faking consciousness,

Take us to be the Kings but slaves we are

to the self-perpetuating mind’s yarn,

And always bowed down by the whirling emotions.

A tyrant is this human trait,

But compensates with coronation;

The humans rule with a heavy diadem,

Happy we are to be supreme in the food chain,

But fodder we are to our own selves.

Make we fun of the beasts

for being bald without the coronet;

The crown finds them too low,

So taken they are as light-headed and funny;

And we high with a loaded head.

Lashed is the master by the desires unstoppable,

Cries, wails, neighs, but cannot deny

as a revolting ‘no’ needs the head’s shake,

which the King’s craving avoids,

for any browbeat will turn the head bare.

Dressed we are with the shiny fabric

of chronic self-importance,

So much is piled up by the ‘thinker’

that it turns a creaky, complaining wagon,

Throw we then our load at others with hate.

֍♠֎

Nothing Isn’t My Village

Testy, desultory or heavenly,

Bright as theism or atheistic blind,

Devoid of twenty-first harum-scarum,

But not a dormouse of the nineteenth,

Nothing is my village, yet all.

Perfect are a few weeks of spring here

even without the famed flowering flora,

The acacia prickles smile

among the lush green branches,

Nature’s soldiers last; the green army retreating fast.

Not nature’s compassion soft,

Nor concrete’s girdle hard,

Soil’s warmth scent or burn,

Villagers enjoy the extremes both,

While, the oxen envy the master’s stamina.

Law abiding, if they ignore,

Awareness shows only the opposite,

Rises humanity with the sun,

Skilled and unskilled

live here lifefully most.

The summers pass, remain as they

cool to the facilitated islands,

Easily strolls the cold, stay as they warm

to the icy deprivations,

Such are the people here.

Aspire they only a harvest good,

Loss-gain being the sequence,

Teasing nature throws them

on the hard but motherly soil,

Live where they as simple villagers.

֍♠֎

Little Angels

Little angels, swim in the pond

till the lazy days of late winters,

Flew the elder ducks to reach the hills,

For the nature’s law to survive,

Ducklings but too small to fly to the hilly lakes.

Earlier, started the monsoonal song above,

The pond got fed to be a tiny lake,

Secluded and safe turned the adjoining land,

For, no foot treads there

through the chilly winter whole.

And the ducks far in the hills

smell the heaven waiting motherly,

They feel the aroma of peace extreme in the plains,

Despite being so close to the agents of noise,

Arrived they with birdie songs and quacking notes.

Little ones, you were then just hopes,

Eyed the parents the village pond to breed,

Many dreams thronged the waters,

Swam throngs of tiny ducklings among the elders,

Quack-quack started the great birdie game.

Passed the winters; the early born grew,

Many more were the big ducks now,

But alas, the serenity lost,

The silence was conquered,

The spring brought the conquering foot.

Now, your elders sip peace in the hills,

You here; being the last to be born,

Unable to take the flight long,

Pray I, grow thou strong alone!

And conquer the hills with a brave song.

֍♠֎

Small Farmer

The shifting shades under the sun,

The poor farmer’s fate fluctuates with the same,

God watches detached from far,

Test’s His creation’s performance

through endless nature’s play.

A misfit in the modern world,

He desperately tries; turns unfit,

Greater is the loss,

for a misfit can have a hope of salvation,

The unfit loses his rights to dreams all.

Still, the dew shines daughterly,

The morning breeze sooths motherly,

The rising sunrays enhance the small self,

The brave shadow treads bravely afore,

Implores him to be happy and live just for a day.

The birds pass joyfully chirping;

Large becomes the small world,

Walks as he in his little world,

The insects line up to honour,

Confident becomes the poor man.

Fading sounds from the village,

Again remind him of his real worth,

As home is there,

Storehouse of all deprivations and anxiety;

Much to be extracted from the plot small.

Big-hearted he becomes,

Till he reaches the last night’s dream,

But alas! Too big for his little parcel of land,

Passes the sweat-drenched day,

only to repeat its old version with the next ray.

֍♠֎

The Little, Mossy Stepping Stone

I am a round, moss-clad stone

laid as a fording step on this small, shallow riverbed,

I am glistening white on my face,

And moss-skirted around my base,

Sways my stony heart to the gentle tugs

of the shallow, rippling waters,

I, along with my brethren,

Line up to define a path,

across this little pebbled valley,

Humans, you may have a stony heart,

under the soft muscles in your breast,
But mine is definitely

a soft, mellifluous, mossy green one,
And I wear it on my sleeve,
While you step over my clean white face,
And scamper away,
I just pray,
Safe you reach,
Without any further breach.


֍♠֎

Mossy Fluidity

In the mossy fluidity of a solitary pool
in a lonely vale,

An open, welcoming canvas,–

Mossy green, pale yellow, rusted brown and mottled gray,

As a tired traveller I stand and
see my shadows while the mountain breeze hail,
My spread self mixed with the mossy waters,
And I marvel at the small canvas holding the image,
While the brook tries to rewrite the colours.

֍♠֎

God! Who or What are You?

God, reside thou where?

In a simpleton’s easy, empty mind,

or an intellectual’s heavy, shiny brain?

Fill you an innocent, almost empty child,

or burst from the laden, wise old?

Sun’s warm rays are you

that bathes us with life?

Or the dark, blind night,

imitate when we death and forgetfulness?

God, which facet of appearance you are?

The winner’s pride are thou?

Or sulk through the defeated?

The water around a lotus

or the parched land below thorns?

God, which extreme you are?

Ever blooming, fade not,

or rejuvenate now and then?

Punishment to the guilty

or mother’s soft hand to the wronged,

God, what art thou?

Strong’s heavy impact are you,

or the weak’s escape?

Whether the animals in the jungle,

or most social are you?

God, which thing art you?

Humane more than humanity,

or a taboo you are to avoid?

Whose master are you?

Of those devouts in temples and shrines,

or just a common good being?

֍♠֎

The Wind from Dreamland

O wind, come you from far,

From that land beyond dreams,

which the eyes never saw, nor ears heard,

and the sleep missed even in dreams;

Bless thou! You enable my senses

to feel, hear, see and dream.

I dream with eyes open,

Of the land distant,

Thy touch makes me

imagine all that must be

now happening there,

Circle as you around me.

Those small hills rounded,

With pastures, scattered trees,

Clouds playing with the sun,

And the laughing blue also,

The distant howl of a wolf,

and the bleating lambs straighten their ears.

I accompany that tiller

walking barefoot, on the way

to his small farm and

touch the tools he shoulders,

And wish him the best of potatoes,

O air, I can feel his worries also.

I look at that house far away,

On that flat ledge by the hillside,

Chimney smokes, doors closed,

Family gathered around a table,

And listen to their chit-chat,

O wind, I can see their balmy routine.

My heart feels their feelings,

They worry about the father

gone to the nearest town;

One of them going to the window

and stare into the misty distances

of the winding, hilly path.

I walk on the grass unbeaten,

which softly pricks with virginal blades,

Nobody must have walked here

except some lone animal,

Or, some forlorn love-drenched soul,

I rest on the green carpet now and close my eyes.

Sit now under a luxuriant tree’s canopy,

Few must have rested here,

A bird chirps above in the green,

Heart beats with its melody,

And the notes go spreading

and surrendering to the majestic solitude.

There flows a brook,

Its gentle murmur on the pebbled bed,

The eyes see a fluid canvas:

Sand, pebbles and fishes,

I now dip my legs in the water,

I feel rain somewhere up.

O wind, I can live all that scene,

Distances have melted,

You mixed that hilly essence

as you swept over the charming panorama,

That is the world only for me,

As nobody else hears, sees or dreams it.

֍♠֎

Betrayed Self of the Indian Soul

Runs today this country, but how?

Gazing up to its stars, who

sowed the potential seeds of mass destiny,

Oof, defeated now by its masses own!

Their self vouched for a nation great,

But now self-betrayed most,

Self-defeating today’s youth

listen not the soulful cries of those martyred.

Ripe fruits they were,

Thrust themselves in freedom’s crusher,

Blood came pure, while the fleshy mass

and powdered bones smiled in the dust.

Those dying heaps of flesh dreamt

a rainbow-hued nation,

Alas, we stomped over their blood’s carpet,

With monstrous hoofs of every sort.

Torn out dream it’s now, smiling in some old eye,

While we run hoarsely, sometimes just to

pick up certain dusted piece

on some anniversary or the other.

Nehru’s ‘productive hands’ throttle others;

Non-violence simply an impractical antonym,

This nation will wither; its rulers show

moral corruptibility extreme; subjects do the same.

Gasps this nation for life, its body

sixty years old, clad in wornouts,

Holding its staggering and crawling billion souls,

But for how long, I am afraid to guess!

֍♠֎

Mother

So many things exist, to whom

one must shed the pungent sense of self,

But the murky self always neighs,

Making a nimble, smart, selfish, social dummy.

Stretch such things till the stars,

Whom our desires turn to dust around our feet,

Although measurable not,

Mother is but the loser most.

Machine is this society,

Operates on input-output principle,

Vary the losses among different relations,

Ever-giving mother is but the giver biggest.

All her relations take it through:

Parents as the ‘other’s property’,

Outshines husband as the hope last,

And children fatten on her maternity.

Mother of pearl she is,

Harder the shell, the better it is,

One day, sulks which empty, the pearl gone,

Suffers she with the hollow title of an ideal mother.

Most imbalanced is her equation,

Fattest is the oaf on the opposite;

Melts her in childhood,

And befools in his youth.

Mowed down in the old age,

Obsolete and ignored manifold,

Dies she before herself,

Without any solace even from the past.

֍♠֎

The Orthodox Proverb

Work hard, you will get a reward—

It’s drilled deep in childhood soft,

A saying it’s only then,

Simple minds find it the elders’ trick,

Who any way must find fault

and ordain so many things unplayful.

The same proverb spreads its tentacles,

Grows it with the body,

Burden it is not now,

But a necessity to survive,

And they obey its command,

What a devil! Free by now.

The adults are serious enough

about name, fame and glory,

Dedicate they themselves to a cause,

Create a glass palace so huge,

Crumbles which one day,

Splintered pieces cut through the flesh.

The evil survives still,

Now through the sympathetic pout,

Except the sulking self, the universe parrots it,

What can the poor soul do?

If not aspire for the palace again,

Alas, the fate repeats itself most often!

Success is rarely the outcome,

If it comes, greater is the endeavour,

somehow doomed to fail another time,

And if not, failure is loosened

from the garb it had taken,

Both lead to the same age-old futility.

Battered is failure through pompous words,

To get ready the wounded,

And obey the immortal proverb’s command,

Dies it never, only we perish,

Even the dying is wished to

succeed in the life next!

There is no other way,

But to fall in its trap,

It’s supposed to last

even after the death,

If the saying has an exception,

Then please, tell me one!

֍♠֎

The Lost Light

Stumbled I across

the rugged mountain track,

Tall pines lingered above,

The gigantic peaks snubbed,

I felt the smallest there.

Cold air touched peaks,

Higher they appeared still,

Shrivelled I and crinkled,

Passed clouds above swiftly,

Confirmed piteous lowness mine.

Trifling I felt,

Took them as ghosts around,

Subdued I was,

Less by the body weak,

But more in the mind.

My eyes saw piteously,

Sick was my soul

in getting fooled by the pessimistic eyes,

Aching were my legs,

More by the weakness imagined.

Earlier, the sun illuminated

the whole valley alongside,

Living were all except me,

Now, setting it was,

And imminent was gloom.

Knew I, the lost opportunity,

Wasted I the entire day

in seeing desperate dark,

Now, manifold it was,

Realized I, the lost light.

֍♠֎

The Eulogy, Vanished

Frowned upon he was,

As failed he all expectations,

Own was fault,

Lived he on others’ dreams.

Like a slave he was,

Wasted life whole;

Did as the master wanted,

Died then empty all.

Always he cried hoarsely,

Sand song theirs,

Bleeding were his own

deep inside the imprisoned self.

Eulogized he was then,

Renowned became the grave,

Rot inside which the flesh

of the dead heart’s unsung song.

Fame he took it to

crush his own heart’s freedom,

Played they with it,

While his soul cried.

Expected they still more

from the slavish being,

Crumpled which under the demand,

A living grave he turned.

Now uncouth history he was,

Same was the grave,

Alas, eulogy had vanished

like his powdered bones in the grave.

֍♠֎

Last Death

Dirty song is life, peeled off

throats of those who sing this grisly verse,

It is a curse,

we get it due to past births’ misdeeds.

Why was I born? Only to

continue breathing like a statue,

every cycle pinches; why all

live to be murdered at each step?

I aspire to live, but always

lynched to death, which comes never,

Leaves me tossing and bleeding,

I pray for the divine death only.

Skinny dog paddling for life,

With a mute look in the waters dangerous,

Alas, destined to be drowned!

A bird with chipped wings I am.

So much takes out every breath,

Appears this nature feeding on me—

The soul escapes nostrils every second,

I hate all, drink they my soul’s blood.

Cursed never to act or imagine,

As these always fall on me;

Strike like a thunderbolt,

And there I lay tossing in pain.

The time will come when I will

become passive to the hunter’s arrows,

Nothing will remain to make Him happy;

Die when will I for the last time.

Alas, it’s a dream, not to be true,

I know, I won’t meet the death last,

as long as I wish for it,

As I’m destined to fail even in this wish.

֍♠֎

Falling in a Pit

Too far and deep

I have gone into the pit of gloom,
And lost in the cavernous folds

of the impending doom,
Even the brightest big suns

now appear too far and take puns,
Faint stars these now

and just flash their inspiring rays,
Feeble rays reaching me cannot take out

the ship caught in treacherous bays,
I know the futility of the beckoning light,
Even in its brightest folds outside,

hope was always out of sight,
Now I go deep into my night, 
With nobody as a witness to my plight,
All cherished dreams out of sight,
A wingless bird that tried to fly

but then crashed from its struggled height,
Now I just silently walk into

the dark hold of my night,
Alone
and forlorn,
The musicality of my soft moan,
Carrying me into hitherto unreachable zone.

Top of Form


֍♠֎

One Special Speciality

Thou are all speciality;

Standing above the ordinary,

You pleasantly cuddle my psyche,

Everlasting is the image,

Such is rarity yours.

Eureka! Ethereal evasiveness yours,

Exalted is the examinee,

As the human self aspires always

exemption from the commonness around,

Thou make me feel special.

Speciality, fragrance distinct,

Aspire which humans all;

Asphodel singled out in orchard,

Smiles which like the rarest blossom,

And I become privileged more.

Emotions about you perfect me,

Assuage the beast inside,

Attar sweetest you are,

By which austere is not

the world abounding in trivialities.

Need humans an aurora new,

Subdued in the race mad,

I like you as an axiom of beauty,

But not just for my sake,

Rather for the humanity whole.

All should aspire for

one lyrical lyre special,

Last hope it is for

the defeating self in a world ghoulish,

Salvager, aspire I always thou.

֍♠֎

The Dying Day, Unwanted

Day! You now prepare to go,

Exactly one thousand years ago

brother your did the same,

Repeat thou now history,

For man’s sake, the millennium new!

The ageing process of humanity—

The new millennium,

New hopes and aspirations,

Grew we up by a thousand years,

Thus historically old,

Pretend now to be kids,

And get jumpy-grumpy in pell-mell celebrations.

You, who will carry the billions

laden on your chariot,

While they will rejoice,

Unmindful of the old, greying carrier.

You, ready to die a universal death

without ageing anyone,

As they pluck off you from

the reach of the biological clock,

Or infinite pendulum’s swing,

Billions of aspirations and load,

Like ant swarms,

they queue up to the holes next—

The looming unknown and dark millennium,

And you who proudly hold

the baton for the last time,

Stand here alone,

watching the mob trudging forward,

You, who like thousand brothers yours

bore the brunt of thousand years’ flurry,

Obeyed the command of God—

‘Falter never or choke!

Let them go!’

֍♠֎

Let the Change Prevail Inside

This chilly gentle breeze of a defined era

blankets us for the last,

This sun struggling in the fog,

Tries to see us for the last.

From a long slumber we arise,

On this millennium’s last dawn,

The moon in its last phase

still gracing the western sky,

And through its bloated,

Obscured shape in the west,

Stubbornly watches the hoopla,

The millennium eve’s noise.

God! Amidst such fire-cracking ‘lasts’,

About the matter and externalities,

Will the ‘lasts’ extend

to the dark corners in us?

The patches where

greed, selfishness, war

and all man-made disasters

vying with the nature’s,

Will they also pack off

to follow the trend around.

O night, when you arrive today,

Please chuck away all the dirt

in thy nocturnal folds:

O sun, cast your ochre rays

oblique upon the wrong facets,

Make them glow like jewels;

O breeze, enter the souls,

Soothe the passion inside,

Blow up which like volcano;

O man, let the series culminating around,

enter your deeper self and make you realise,

the futility of sticking to old follies

even in the new era.

֍♠֎

The Millennium Bath

A bath I am to have today,

The ‘after death’ ritual

for the mortals left behind;

The old millennium will die today.

The certainty of its death,

And the certainty of timing as well!

I want to be certain myself;

Wash I will, the mortal remains.

The remains of the millennium last,

Quantified efforts to measure eternity,

A part of me will also die today,

Fragmented death to live fully another day.

Die with the millennium,

A thousand years old man,

Wash I will myself,

Midnight is the hour to depart.

We will go hand in hand,

The remains will be left behind—

All washed out and infants;

Millennium new, and the new man.

That is why I will bathe

for the new man, millennium new,

We know, the new may loath the old;

Two thousand-year-olds.

Try I will to oblate the sins,

And all the sewage and garbage,

Layered which over both of us,

I will bathe for both today.

֍♠֎

Some Celebrating Lamps

Celebrations will occur today,

With firecrackers and partying

on happy islands on the west coast,

Noise huge, colours bright

will try to subdue something.

Something which plagues the east,

The hush and fury in the dark,

Arrowed upon poorly quantified humanity,

Died where even the little traces of quality and dignity,

And celebrations will take place in the west.

Those drunken dances and rockets flying,

The rich garbage of celebration scattered around,

Myriads swaying upon the boozed beaches,

With joy, sensuousness and laughter,

While deadly claws put a print on the sand in the east.

The east spread out like an orphan,

The forlorn beaches, where swept out

were the labouring footprints of masses,

The night where howls around

the decaying uncremated remains.

And unmindful and uncaring

they will celebrate the night whole,

For new dawn, millennium new,

Hope has died meanwhile

somewhere with the millennium gone.

Such is the case with humans,

Segmented society for roles,

The lucky ones with a lamp

to welcome the change great,

Others carried on bier in the dark.

֍♠֎

There is Always Light Somehow

There is light beyond

the deepest dark depth,

There is a bright day after

the ghostly haunts of a nightmarish night,

After a barren famished fight

there is a full blossomed spring’s delight,

After pining pangs of separation

there is a worthy end to the desperation,

After crashing in the gutters

there is a surge and rise to bathe in holy waters,

After crying convulsions on the lips,

a smile takes honeyed sips,

After the last defeat,

still there is an undying urge to accomplish the feat,

Even when blind with despair,

there is hope hiding and cajoling somewhere,

Even in hate love still lurks somewhere!

֍♠֎

The Millennium takes a Big Toll

The millennium is to end,

So will be the case with the century,

Approaches as this day the zero hour;

Aah, this narrowing down,

Too eager to embrace the next,

The altar of nationalism too

looks for some selfless sacrifice,

The stale flowers of its glorious past,

Now need some offerings fresh.

On this 31st of December,

alarmed is this mortal

for the countdown quickened,

The relatives few weep hoarsely,

For their loved ones,

Hijacked at a land distant;

Nationalism is thirsty,

It demands sacrifice,

A billion souls expecting a few hundred people

to assuage their boiling sense of nationhood,

But the pain of one’s own blood

is felt only by the closest kin.

Their pointing fingers,

And slogans for the release

of someone who challenged

our integrity, our pride,

They have to put self above the nation,

Jingoism is on a hypothetical plane,

The realty cuts us to our real size.

Wails, cries and noises,

Chorused a pleading, ‘Release’,

For a week whole,

Nationalism squirmed meanwhile,

Dreams of national glory postponed

to save the blood in real life,

Struck was a bargain

to save those who constitute the nation.

Three militants go free,

Hundreds died to capture whom,

Our soldiers look mute,

Bullets in their chests

though pain not much,

But then there are tears of joy

as the captives walk free,

Nationalism may feel the pinch,

But is it above the life of its ordinary citizens?

This millennium can seek comfort,

As another will follow figuratively,

Nationalism but must be feeling

a fishy death out of the pond,

Suffocated to death;

Vanish as the oxygen from the lungs,

The hawks may condemn them as selfish,

But is it a sin to cry to save one’s kin?

Earlier, some soldiers kidnapped for

the cause same were slaughtered,

Nobody then barked ‘Release’,

O my God,

A soldier taken guaranteed to die.

The hostages will return tonight,

Under pressure by the citizens,

The painful wails shut out

all nationalistic doors in the state,

And they will celebrate,

Some 160 families will rejoice extra,

But they should light candles also

for those who died in Kargil,

Everybody jingled when

with pride and love for the nation,

Certain as they were of safety,

Died meanwhile our soldiers icy deaths.

Yes, we will celebrate today

the approach of the millennium new;

And the great guffaws will echo around,

Hysterically rising towards

the zero hour approaching,

But at what cost?

A question difficult to answer.

֍♠֎

My Sleepy Village on the Millennium Eve

The new millennium will

take birth in a couple of hours

in the foggy dark with the stars blown out.

What kind of handover is this?

When we see no light,

Either in the houses or starry twinklings above.

The dusk today was prematurely lost in fog,

Not a single star smiled,

Starless, light-less we go into the changeover.

Same in the houses, blackouted,

We here in this sleepy village

lie abed in the archaic dark.

Surely the fog will last

for another half of the day to come,

Sunless, we will welcome the newborn triplets.

Millennium, century, day;

The momentous birth-time in the dark,

Electric bulbs in houses also follow nature in gloom.

Of course, luminosity is there somewhere,

At places some; houses privileged,

Bulbs glow, create as they stars new.

Lucky they are,

Take part in the natal activities,

And the partisan, crony-crazed new one arrives.

And we the irritating ones,

Shunned for not taking part in the celebrations

at the long anticipated moment of break in history.

Uncertain we are thus,

What change has for us?

The stale old dry dust or some fresh dew?

The night is thus cold and dark,

Great events will occur,

Our fate but hardly provides any succour.

֍♠֎

The Night in Labour Pain

The night is in labour pain today,

I can feel its sweat, suffering and plight.

Triplets are to be born today—

The millennium, the century, the day.

Labour pain is too much—

Wars, epidemics, killings kicked her belly.

For years one thousand she bore

the pregnancy period all turbulent and disturbed.

The pain is thus too much,

Yet birth she has to give for new life.

A new child among the maternal pains,

The elder one meanwhile writhing to die.

And look at the urgency,

Sky has touched the ground almost.

A smoky fog circles around

to work as a midwife.

Too many kicks have been hurled at the belly,

Pain hence cannot be avoided.

Painful writhing more so,

For the birth time’s certainty is there.

Also scared is the mother

of those rioters awaiting the birth.

God forbid, if they go crazy,

and kick at the moment last.

Anxious for the infant,

She fears pangs more.

Small hope is there in a lamp

glowing dimply by death bed.

But a furious whiff by anyone

can blow it out too.

֍♠֎

Midnight Crowning

Now that clock has struck twelve,

We have entered the millennium new;

The grand ceremonial crowning,

Celebrations for which were going on

among hopes, fears, opportunities new.

The court members are jubilant,

Exult at this moment,

The rest, meanwhile, remain unconscious,

Even about the newly crowned!

What type of coronation is this?

That people nearest to the ground understand it not,

Just a time-pass game perhaps,

Still, on this foggy cold night,

When voices are heard high and near,

Thanks to the dense foggy medium,

The noise made here or there

travels disproportionate to the source’s distance,

And the majority just takes a turn,

Lying while in their beds.

Isn’t it an unsuitable time?

For they must sleep now,

While the crowning ceremony

being held at this freezing zero hour,

When few must be awake

and left with celebrity nocturnal spirit,

Sleep they will like bats and owls

when the day will break,

And the rest will start toiling,

Unmindful of the nocturnalities.

Of course, new sun, new day

will be there for them,

Its meaning but will be unnoticeable;

Hungry, deprived bellies never

sense theoretical change in the cosmos as such.

֍♠֎

Three Big Zeroes for All

At this zero hour I stand in the dark,

trying to see the newcomer,

Nobody is there, alas!

Not even the refracted skylight.

Bundled out round in a circle,

I thus fumble around words,

Meaning whose has fatality—

Of circling around; ending nowhere.

Three big zeroes of the new,

which hover over, gobble up

the sleepy environment  around me,

Wonder while I about the ‘zeroness’.

Three zeroes take me round—

The zero for myself,

A bigger one for the country,

Still larger one for the world whole.

Will I break this vicious circle

of rounding on the path same;

Burning out too much energy,

Arriving then at nothing?

Will this country having

so many self-centred circles,

Arrive at something new,

rather than the same big zero?

And what about this world?

Will it unmatch its physical shape?

The great big circle,

Binds which our orbiting passions.

֍♠֎

Of New Glimpses, New Rays

The new sun, millennium new,

Rays new at Dong, Katchel,

Pray I, crown my India anew!

New with a newly hewed crown

with hopes of more survival,

Not so with basics, rather

new roles, responsibilities new.

That India which saw

so much of flux and turbulence

over thy last empire—

History of religions,

Of races, ideas and many more,

Pray I, the newly diademed

remain such in the millennium next.

O new sun, shine too bright,

To light the patches dark,

Haunt which the geography ours,

And shadows whose reach hearts,

Sun, please warm up our hearts

with new warm ideas,

Glow with such spiritual aura

that the highest peaks in the Himalayas

shine like a jewel on the head,

O light, traverse through body

‘Hindustan’ to most distant parts;

Each hut, each palace, each home,

Light them, do away with the dark.

God, we committed wrongs,

Blood spilled over,

Minds became rigid; misunderstood,

Pray I, o new rays,

Warm up them again,

Blanket up the wrong,

O new sun,

Shine with vibrancy such.

֍♠֎

New Dawn—Warm Rays for Frigid Fate

The days are in fact trotting,

A new dawn, new year, of course

new century and millennium,

The snaily destiny but pulls back.

Time may fly past,

Making us grow manifold,

We but remain stony,

rigid and preyed upon by chance.

Moves it too slowly,

Whom spirit never catches,

Its rock-like firmness,

makes us stick mossily around.

I do not know

what the new rays have in store?

Better or worse?

Rays to see or to blind?

Today I start my new day;

A new start and initiative,

Let me see if the occasion special

lends its hues to me also.

My palette has just two colours,

Just black and white,

Let me see if it gets multi-coloured,

Giving me a new rainbow.

I do not know whether the new dawn

is a different one, after the night long,

When darkness grappled with me and I failed,

Or is it the same as the old?

Let me see the occasion

too special and celebrity,

Prismatic and multicoloured,

Too long was the one-coloured night.

O new rays,

Please turn the occasion special,

God please, leave I myself

at thy complete mercy.

֍♠֎

The Midnight’s Throaty Call

The great call at midnight:

‘Will the throaty pitch and guffaw

be the same for the thousand years coming?’

If it’s to be such,

Please, then let us all

turn to nothingness at this moment.

Nothing new does it seem:

The chorus behind the throaty

noise seems to be the same foolish dream.

Such a huge and godly definition

given to the change,

Most forgettable is which,

but parroted now with childish rage.

Godliness has been contrived out of it,

I’m afraid it will bear the end same;

Revered now most formally,

Misunderstood and negated afterwards,

In all practices which

the sun will uncover at the dawn.

֍♠֎

A Cosily Safe Smile Somewhere

The spring’s traces last,

Hot summers approaching fast,

Languid notes in the air,

A solitary bird’s forlorn chirping

for its musical share,

Drowned in stillness

this late morning bright and fair,

The sky’s dull blue,

Spread with some mystical clue,

But a smaller world is there,

The overall unease cannot reach where,–

In its self-defined world

in a corner tiny,

The luscious wild flower

still stands brave and shiny.

֍♠֎

Indefatigable Beauty

The storm screeched through the night,

Poured its fury through sadistic love-bite,

Undefeated but smiles the beauty,

Still doing its fragrant duty,

Her holy petals bear

the storm’s violating drops without fear,

Holy beads now they are,

Smiles, smiles and no war!

֍♠֎

Little Master Corona

O thou little master,

The world was a bit faster,

You now force brakes,

Lions turn into drakes,

Even newspaper is scary,

No longer a news-carrying fairy,

It comes from Delhi,

Fear pinches my guts and belly,

With inhibitions I touch,

A fearful world is such.

֍♠֎

The Story of a Frost-beaten Tree

The winter has been brutal and harsh,

And my struggle turned almost a farce,

Lost all my leaves,

With loss my soul grieves,

Still not all is lost,

For greenish life finds a host

in the wheat at my feet,

They pay a respectable greet,

My loss and my pain

don’t go in vain,

Tumbled down as my leaf

with pain and grief,

Blossom thousands around,

Wheatlings like daughters doth surround,

Fell where my tear,

Many a smile this earth doth bear,

Doesn’t go waste my pain,

Sows it the prospects of gain,

If not for me,

Definitely for thee.

֍♠֎

The Light

The light does hark,

beyond the deepest dark,

There is a day bright,

after the ghostly haunts of a nightmarish night,

After a barren famished fight,

there blossoms the spring’s delight,

After pining pangs of separation,

there is a worthy end to the desperation,

After crashing in the gutters,

there is a surge and rise to bathe in holy waters,

After crying convulsions on the lips,

a smile takes honeyed sips,

After the last defeat,

still there is an undying urge to accomplish the feat,

Even when blind with despair,

there is hope hiding and cajoling somewhere,

Even in hate, love still lurks somewhere.

֍♠֎

Lost

It has been months since

I last lit my faith’s lamp,

So many days have passed since

prayers chimed in my dark den’s air damp,

My meditating self,

Now gives atheistic yelp.

Lost my faith!

Lost my prayer!

Lost my rituals!

Lost my meditative trance!

֍♠֎

A Story

The story told by the soul to its own corpse:

Once I flew and frolicked high,

Now the flesh and blood gone dry,

The real me withdrew with a painful sigh,

They say, ‘I was destined to die,’

It’s but the biggest lie!

֍♠֎

The Night

Too far and deep,

I have gone into the pit of gloom,

And lost in the cavernous folds

of the impending doom,

Even the brightest big suns

now appear too far,

Faint stars these now

that just flash their feebly inspiring rays,

The feeble raylets reaching me

cannot take out the ship caught in treacherous bays,

I know the futility of the beckoning light,

Even in its brightest folds outside,

hope was always out of sight,

Now I go deep into my night,

With nobody as a witness to my plight,

All cherished dreams out of sight,

A wingless bird that tried to fly

but then crashed from its struggled height,

Now I just silently walk

into the dark hold of my night,

Alone

and forlorn,

The echo of my soft moan,

carrying me into hitherto unreachable zone.

֍♠֎

Holy Fire

I am the moth

and I love my flame!

My fire!

But I feel the burning core of

the glow around which

I helplessly circle around!

I know that I cannot stop

the fire from burning,

So I throw myself in a fiery pit

to forget my dear flame’s burning plight!

I throw myself in a bigger fire

so that I forget myself

and my flame’s cries!

֍♠֎

The Voice Inside

Forget about the hoot and holler

emanating from the world outside,

And give an ear to the soft and murmurous

cooings emanating from the soul,

It has a soft and sympathetic

message for you only,–

your most personal message,

meant only for you,

Listen to these delicate chimes,

It’ll help you in finding peace in chaos,

In getting a foothold in the stampede,

In feeling rest, repose and respite

against constant buffeting by the world around,

It’ll help you in breaking

the hardest of superficial layers,

which suffocate and limit your identity,

And put you face to face with

your true self, your real worth,

Listen to it, close your eyes,

And pay attention with all your heart,

Just for a change,

don’t look far, look closest at yourself,

It’ll be as uneventful as looking

at a dust particle around your feet,

But it changes the universe for you,

You will have the biggest message

in the softest of whispering phrases,

And it’ll help you in finding yourself.

֍♠֎

My Mind, My Buddy

Be the seat of my strength, not weakness.

Be the seat of kindness, not cruelty.

Be the source of light, not darkness.

Be the source of energy, not idleness.

Be the source of creativity, not limited vision.

Be the source of love, not hate.

Be the source of smiles, not tears.

Be the source of happiness, not suffering.

Be the seat of optimism, not pessimism.

Be the seat of gain, not loss.

Be the source of help, not obstruction.

Be the seat of leadership, not just sleepwalk.

Be the seat of a better human being.

Be the source of a more loving person.

O my mind, my seat of potential,

take my journey further.

Please choose the better half

of all the dualities for me.

֍♠֎

Midnight Musings

A few night-blossoming jasmine flowers muse:

Dewy fun under nightly sun

Swathed in the cool shades of a dewy night,

We stand brave with smiles and innocent delight,

When all sleep,

we hold the beacon of love and light,

The moon is our sun,

When you will get up in the morning,

you can’t imagine how much was the nightly fun!

֍♠֎

Sweet Pangs of Nostalgia

Holding a dream in my fist,

Staring at the misty past

and forcing myself not to see the future

eager to unfold itself too fast,

I wave at the nostalgic strains

still beckoning and faintly alive,

How I wish I could dive

back into the pools of the past,

To have my moments last

at a place that held me in its cradle soft,

That pious embrace which still holds me aloft!

֍♠֎

A Fatherly Whisper

Parental love loops around with a new ray

on an early winter day,

The mighty lord whispers in a soft voice,

‘My son grow thou strongest in spirit

and sire chances for those without any choice!’

֍♠֎

Your Sweet Enemy

Though your enemy, I am sweet,

My neck thus deserves a softer treat.

֍♠֎

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