Friday, November 23, 2007

in poem 4

there was a limp
a slouch and shivering hands.
age catching up with
a man whose youth was
panting against time.
i slowed down my steps
to match his, long back
i used to trot
trying to catch up

with my father.
i slowed down,
my fading youth
irked by its own mirror image
my blood slowing down
to match his; despite
my eyes looked down
to a greying man
the shadow which was
strong and powerful once .
he who was tall once
now shrunk down
to his vital essences.

I ...slowed ... down...

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Elements of Bodily Hate

What do I tell you?
My love hurt
So I left it
Turn sour
Vanish as vapor
In my chest
Or disappear
In the dust
I carry on
My toes
My nails
The blisters
Of my
Sodden feet,
Travel weary!
Or mucus,
My thumb
And washed
Down the drain
Or a piece
Of smoldering heart
Soldered with will
To keep you


do I crave for your pain
and your tears pin me down
like daggers
my heart cringes
in its lonely corners
like a guilty child

I love, yearn, hate
and escape from
your voice
trickling down
the cellular phone
then your missives
I loathe reading your darts
yet I do - frowning;
the ugly grimace of love
that dies on our lips
like stale kisses-
I wallow in the abysses
of painless terror
my ring,
faded with use,
lost its gleam
gold remains.

can you come to
me with cheer
I ask my tears
they smile down
my cheek
drenching my
leathery skin
parched like
a cracked desert.

Fishing in a forest stream

We were four.
Kevin and three women
With beer bottles
And fishing rod
We waited with
Rubber baits
Bated breath
Duplicates of
Glitter worms and
Psychedelic flies
To hypnotize
Any savage
Fish that
Dared cross the stream.
We could only hear
The river ripples
And the violent
Guzzle of beer
As we swung our
Bottles with a rare
Holiday delight.
City bred women
With colours
and themes
waiting for a gullible
Forest fish.
Our wait ended
When a village boy
Ambled in
Threw a hook
With an atta bait
And pulled out
a thrashing
Fish with ease
And smiled
with a twinkle at
City’s foibles

I want to write a happy poem

I want to write a happy poem
about the pond in the backyard
still as Walden, changing colour
with the sun, orange at sunset
flashes of green-blue all day.
They say its haunted.
Once they found a dimwit
midget’s body there, three days
after he disappeared.
People watched vacant
unhelpful, wrinkle-snouted
as his brother dug out
rotting flesh, the stench
of blood and brotherhood
pervades there even now.

Or do I write about
the playground, a plateau
on slopes, where I used to
go for a jog and morning air
where five men and a child were
shot dead unceremoniously
on a calm September morning?
Or about a student
shot on the spine
now confined to the wheels
reduced to a bag of bones
a wry smile on our memories?
He who was young and handsome once?

I can tell you about
the girls who meet their lovers
secretly by the graveyard
to steal a kiss or a touch
on their wet virgin dreams.
I have seen their eyes averted
brooding, when their men
search for more
in younger, buxom girls.

Or my gay friend
fresh as a morphed lily
powdered and rouged
with a dab of mascara
who receives threats from men
over the phone, in dark
unearthly hours.
he dares not remove his makeup
or his effete ways
he wears them for this world.

Or, finally, do I write about weather?
The sky shines blue now
blotched with clouds
but it was only yesterday
the cloud burst
and swept a family away
down the rocky stream
never to be found again!!
"Mother died today.
or was it yesterday
I do not know"

Meursault's angst
or the lack of it
looks funny though
in a world full of mothers
they say this line was written
in the bleakest
moment of Fascism,
how well meanings are
woven into the void
or philosophies
smuggled into
an unfeeling world.

i would say
it was written in the
summer of adulthood
when male lips
forgot the first suck
and groped for that
memory in the
smell of musk
on their lovers
skin. memories clog
when maleness performs
like puppets strung in
by achievments and
account statements...

Mothers still die unremembered
they live like forgotten memories too

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Sohra: the cloud and the shine

In cherrapunjee

A usual Sohra morning
as the sun blinkered
in the wettest place on earth,
I captured his rays
on my cupped palms
to store it in my memory.
the sky burst on me.
Clouds nearly stepped down
to kiss my cheek, then
they slid down the hills
tip-toed the vales.
In a flash
I could touch them
they dodged,
became air and dew.
The magic of growing patterns
as they gathered, dispersed
and frolicked in the air.
Moving stealthily like a ghost,
they hid the sun
and teased the wind,
sky smiled blue.
Sohra did not disappoint,
I was air, I was earth,
I was the cloud that
razed the grasslands
on tonsured hillocks.

Monoliths of Nartiang*

On waking up, I fold my
quilt into neat squares
I count my days passing
hours, compress my life
into algebraic slots. The
wind blows shattering
my cards, here I drift in
the raft of my instincts.
I have no illusions left.

The menhirs of Marphylangki
yoni flats and phallic mounts,
challenge the wind, the sun,
even the straying goats- their
bleat, afterbirth, dung. I saw
men disappear into chaos of
birth and death. On market
days turbaned men gather loot
divide and grin with a blear
women, weighed down by khohs,
breath hard and blush, their
stained gums are autumn leaves on
earth; red-brown- pregnant- decay.
men laze on hills sipping
beer, they laugh and rile.

In the olden Durga mandir,
I saw a young priest with
light eyes from which I could
not unfasten mine. The dungeon
where corpses floated to the
river-mouth lay hidden behind the
panelled wood. The temple was
scrubbed clean of the memories
of blood and human heads

* Nartiang is a village in the Jaintia Hills, Meghalaya and is home to many curious menhirs and dolmens erected by the legendary Goliath-like figure Marphlagki in the 17th century

Friday, November 09, 2007

Sea We(ë/ð)ding

I smelt the sea
(fish, salt and rut
under the indigo sky)
her blue canopy
shimmered tinsel
there tiny ships
cast their mast
and sailed calm.

I saw
canoes gleamed green
sun tongues glinted
on power boats
they were far far away.

I heard
fishermen’s shout
muffled by salt,
mist and sweat
swelter in the morning sun
they dragged their catch,
sodden weeds
refuse of waves,
their termite line
yelled and sang
at every heave.

I was not human
nor a mermaid
but a whirlpool
yawning wide
to steal my life
and merge
with the ever
expanding sea.

then the sea was mine…
I wed the sea
like Ophelia
in her calm repose
filigreed with froth
dead fish and
residues of pain.


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