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Showing posts from March, 2010


A gunshot in the temple, tempered by cocaine;
Barbiturates, so honeyed dreams shall never fade;
Or seppuku and its seizing, searing pain
As tenderly nurtured flesh meets the whetted blade;Plunge a dagger into one's own neck, and wailing
Screeching, screaming qualis artifex pereo;
Or must it be by self-immolation, flailing,
Buckling, gyrating in an obscene rodeo;Fall upon one's sword, or trust one's loyal maiden
To smuggle in an asp and to it surrender;
Perhaps a ripened apple, cyanide-laden
To exit without pain, and go out in splendour;Which is it truly, the most beautiful way
To pass into freedom, and escape from today?Published in Lakdi Ka Pul - II The Poetry Bridge 2017 — an international anthology by Twin City Poetry Club

Ode to a Trolley Dolly

By all means you should be pushing a trolley
Twenty-one thousand feet in the air, your face
Plastered with creams of all kinds - Chinese holly,
Acai berry, ginseng - ground into pomace,
That overlaid with rouge and baby powder
Till your beauty cannot scream any louder
And yet gilded with lipstick and mascara,
Guaranteed to make you look an apsara.

But you choose to inflict that upon mortals
In some attempt to inveigle them into
Parting with money; while you thought it was true
That your MBA learning opened portals.

And we children of a lesser god look on
The principles that the Higher Gods work on.

Of course I read your poems

Of course I read your poems.

When I'm not reading a brief
to create an advertising campaign
that will cause a stampede
outside the branches of a bank
offering 6.75% interest on fixed deposits.

Of course I read your poems.

When I'm not standing on one leg
on the bus back home and peering
over the shoulders of a guy
watching Tom Cruise
biff up the baddy on his iPhone
and thinking that Rajnikanth
would have done it better.

Of course I read your poems.

When I am not with my
monomaniacal boss
seated on his hobby horse
expounding his favourite theories
on how the whole world
but him is wrong and
wondering whether to cut up his tie
or strangulate him with it.

Of course I read your poems.

When I'm in the mood to know
how your umpteenth boyfriend
exudes magic from his sebaceous glands
(and not sweat like us mortals)
and taught you the meaning of
love in love-making
and how that same umpteenth
now ex-boyfriend was only using
your heart to mop the floor with
just like all men did before.

Of course I read your poems.


क्या उस फ़क़ीर से हसद रखूँ, जो बिन भुगतान दुनिया का तमाशा देख रहा है
या फिर ख़ुद पर मुस्कुराऊँ, जो बिन रोज़ी तमाशेबाज़ बन बैठा है

(मुश्ताक़ के मदद से)


दस्तक मैंने बहुत दिये, दर कभी खुला नहीं;
पौधे को रोज़ाना सींचा, गुल कभी खिले नहीं;
कमनसीबी लिपटी रही, ख़ाना बदोश जो ठहरा;
धूप को मैं विरासत समझूँ, साया कभी मिला नहीं

ख़ामोशी / خاموشی

अपने अल्फ़ाज़ के चमन को कभी सूना न होने दीजियेगा,
आपकी पल भर की ख़ामोशी भी मेरी रूह को तड़पा जाएगी

اپنے الفاز کے چمن کو کبھی سونا نا ہونے دیجئیگا
آپکی پل بھرر کی خاموشی بھی میری روہ کو تڑپا جائگی


क़त्रे क़त्रे को रेशम में क़ैद कर रखा है मैंने,
तेरा मुस्कुराना सारे जहाँ पर मुबारक है,
पर तेरे चश्म से निकले हर अश्क़ पर सिर्फ़ मेरा हक़ है

Two Hundred

Well, it's not a 200
scored by Maoists or Jehadis.
That would have just given us
an east target for anger and
a temporary thirst for blood
before we realise painfully
that dinner is yet to be earned.

It could be a Shahrukh 200
- 200 metrosexual minutes
of ghee-shakkar and glycerine
which we buy to escape
into that world of love
and niceness and gemutlichkeit
which is so not ours.

It could be a politician's 200
as he assembles a majority
to grab the CM's chair.
Chi-chi we say in disgust
at all that corruption & horsetrading
even as we plot to rig
the housing-society elections.
Papi pet ka sawal, after all.

It's so much more better
that it was Sachin's 200.
Scored ball by ball
in front of our own eyes
and then humbly acknowledged.
200 runs of honest industry
to line our stomachs with.

We're truly happy that
Sachin scored 200 runs in a match.

A Flower Fallen

I watch a flower fall from its
bough buoyed softly by the
breeze before it lands in the grey,
soulless dust; And with no
leaves to shade it I watch it wilt
into paleness under
the sun's bleaching malevolence;
I watch a wee puppy
toss it in play, then tire and
seek newer diversions;
I watch a young girl walking by
contemplate it, but it's
too pale, too shrivelled to add to
her pretty merriness;
A botanist comes by seeking
specimens, but this one
is torn and damaged - I watch him
toss it aside and look
to the tree above with its fresh
blooms - more perfect in form;
I watch at last a lover pick
it and tear it apart
petal by petal - she loves me,
she loves me not -; at last,
I trample its remains into
the earth - let it dissolve
into elements to emerge
newborn, when I come by
as it blossoms again next spring.