Thursday 26 August 2010

Yesternight and Yesterday

Yesternight I thought the stars came out,
twinkling towards infinity,
the moon was a sil'vry orb
as she played hide-and-seek with the dream mists;
I thought I met the Queen of England
and the Prime Minister of Bangladesh
on a helicopter over the Caribbean
sharing a turqoise curacao
in an electric-lighted reverie ;
I thought I saw the sun rise,
red, orange, yellow
to the avian symphony of
magpie-robins, mynahs and
red-whiskered bulbuls;

I thought I saw the hibiscus buds open
and the frangipani leaves shed dew;
But what I truly saw
was the grime-laden red city buses
with their overloaded,
quarrelling commuters;
What I truly saw was
the trains stuck at bright red signals
that wouldn't change
to the green glow of progress;
What I truly saw
were my office lights in the false ceiling,
the monotone of the air conditioner
and the stern, upstanding computer screen;
What I truly saw,
was yesterday.

(A bit of the Carpenters' 'Yesterday Once More' might be in this, but just a bit.)

[Published in Making Waves, ed. Pam & Bill Swyers; Swyers Publishing 2011]

Tuesday 24 August 2010

Pourquoi

Pourquoi est-ce que
qu'il y a
des temps pour
danser,
chanter,
courir,
tomber,
voler,
embrasser,
étreindre,
crier,
rire,
sourire,
nager,
grimper aux arbres,
rouler,
jouer
quand on n'est que
l'enfant?

Pourquoi
grandissons nous?

Friday 20 August 2010

Rat

I'm a rat, I'm a rat, I scurry and I bite,
I eat what I get, And I fuck and I fight,
I dodge the black crows, I run from your shoes,
But I'm old or sick, you'll trample over me.

बग़ावत

बग़ावत करूँ भी तो किससे,
ना ग़ुलाम हूँ किसी का,
ना अज़ाद हूँ किसी से

Tuesday 17 August 2010

Stranger

I am a stranger everywhere;
the house I stay in,
is it a home or just a camping-tent?

Roller-coaster

A weekend's thrill,
and then five days
of boring, nerve-wracking
hyperactivity: I'm
on a roller-coaster
I can't get off from.

Monday 16 August 2010

दोस्ती

दोस्ती करना भी तो निभाना है,
कभी डायरी में हमेशा ख़ामोश
एक नाम दर्ज है,
कभी ट्रेन में घण्टे भर की गुफ़्तगू
को ही याराना मान लिया

अवाज़

जान देने वाले बूँदें आपके अल्फ़ाज़ थे, अवाज़ मेरा बस दरिया था
जो ख़ूबसूरती थी आपके अल्फ़ाज़ में थी, अवाज़ मेरा बस ज़रिया था

शेर पर शेर

ऐ इनसान तुझे देखकर ख़ौफ़ नहीं होता,
न तेरे दान्त हैं, न नोकीले नाखून,
फिर ऐसा क्यों कि मेरा शिकार भी तू,
मेरा शिकारी भी तू?

Friday 13 August 2010

I

Two DNA strands
divorced, two bodies joined,
And I am become.

Thursday 12 August 2010

Profit

As turnover, they'll put
gold, land, conquests
and a few genes to my name.
As profit, I'll get to take
with me
a cheap cotton shroud.

Human

There is a human
in every beast, that's why they
are nasty sometimes.

Coffee

I live on coffee
and black depression, hurtling
into nothingness.

Wednesday 11 August 2010

Epulaeryu to curd rice

Fragrant, soft, white, puffy rice
Boiled with mother's love
And mixed with cool, milk white curd
Partaken gently
Morsel by morsel
...And I knew
God!

Tuesday 10 August 2010

Embrace

A red apple, some
cyanide takes me to the
sweet embrace of hers.

Pebble

Why does the world hurtle
on like a pebble rolling
down a mountain?

She

Someday she will be
a voice, not a memory.

Monday 9 August 2010

हवस

आया था बेलिबास, जाऊँगा बाकफ़न,
क्यों रखूँ हवस रेशम-ओ-ज़र का?

Friday 6 August 2010

It

must it care
where,
what,
when,
who,
why?
Congress, BJP,
Shining Path, Tea Party,
balding Czechs, sexy Mexicans,
sanyasins, witches,
Mandodari, Sita,
Ayodhya, Lanka,
sluts and wives,
smog, spring, ash clouds,
Casanovas and Popes,
lamas and rapists,
jihadis, hippies,
cobras, humans, dung-beetles
where,
what,
when,
who,
why?
does it really care?

Wednesday 4 August 2010

Haiku

In life's lasting winter
I find in a haiku
everlasting blooms

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