Wednesday, June 11, 2014

When i have nothing to do
i hate to have nothing to do;
and when i have something to do
i hate to have something to do.
Whether to do or not to do,
tell me folks, what should i do?

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

My First Sonnet Minus Meter

When will this dense deluge abate?
Has time locked up this instant of gloom
and thrown away its key to freeze my fate?
Clouds of foul moods as dark as doom
come with gusts of tempestuous tempers
to lighten their burdens of torments over me.
They are so many- i can't remember
when it was i was happy and free.

I've barred my door and closed my windows;
yet their panes rattle my peace of mind.
I've retreated inside to cushion the blows
but all my efforts have been undermined.

It's cowardice that cuts deeper than a knife.
God, give me courage to walk through strife.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

A Suitable Girl for My Son

This is a poem that describes the sad plight of many Indian women who are thrust into the marriage market. I wrote this from the point of view of a mother-in-law. Please bear in mind that i don't at all endorse anything i've written here. I'm completely against it.

Let me see what she has in her purse.
Let me total all her assets.

Is she tall and pretty and fair?

Is her skin as
velveteen and unblemished
as a newborn's buttock?
Is it a warm shade of peaches and cream?
Does it give a pearly glow
when she pulls back her pallu?

Is her hair
long and thick and lustrous?
Does it ripple behind her back
and fan out like a monsoon cloud
when she loosens her bun
to retire for the night?

Can the curve of her waist be discerned?
Are her breasts big enough
to fill my son's palms?

Are her hips wide enough
to securely cocoon an heir in her womb?

Has she been to school and college?
Can she speak English like an Angrez?
Will she be an arm candy to my son
for his numerous work parties?

What wealth can i wrest from her father?
How much will her dowry
add to our coffers?

Are her rotis as round as mine?
Can she darn torn clothes?
Can she whip up a feast
at a moment's notice?
Can she keep calm in the face of
bawling babies and domestic catastrophes?

Will she stay at home to do the
cooking, washing, bartan, jhadoo and pocha?

Or will she abandon her family
to shamelessly chase dreams?

Let me see her and then decide
whether she'll ever be
as good to my son
as I am to my husband.

Some terms which need explaining are-
pallu- veil
roti- it's a form of unleavened bread
bartan- dishes
jhadoo-sweeping
pocha-mopping
Angrez- Englishman

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Wipe Your Slate Clean

Wipe your slate clean off all
the world has written on it.

Wipe off every single prejudice
that history and culture have
conspired to blinker you with.

Wipe off all you've been made
to like and dislike.

Wipe off
the good and the bad,
right and wrong,
happiness and sadness,
joy and grief.

Wipe yourself off yourself.

You'll see the world
like you've never seen it before.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Pallindrome

Think, write, scratch
go on go on go on go
scratch, write, think.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

The Pianist and the Ballerina

He tunes his piano
She ties her point├ęs.

He sits on his stool
She takes center-stage.

He plays the opening note
The spotlight flashes on her.

He can only hear the crowd's loud cheers
She can only see eyes upon her regal body.

He glues his eyes to his sheets
She fixes her mind upon her movements.

His fingers move mechanically along the keys
Her limbs sway to the tune of precise timing.

He has played this score hundreds of times
She has rehearsed her steps to faultless perfection.

He lets his memory guide his fingers
She lets her limbs free to do their own work.

He steals a glance at her
She opens her ears to lilting melody.

Those sheets of music cease to exist;
He's busy composing his heart's birdsong.

She is no longer a puppet in the audience's hands
Her soul leaps joyfully towards new-found release.

She is his music
and he's her dance.


Friday, February 21, 2014

Addressed to No One Anyone Knows Of

You can
piss on my feelings
all you want;
and get away with it.

You're a giant
and i'm a peashooter.

You're friendly popular
tried tested and trusted.
(Or so it seems.)

I'm the caustic irreverent
'rebel without a cause'
(Or so the world thinks.)
My existence itself is profane.

You can easily dismiss me
with a languid wave of your hand.
I'll be swatted away like a fly.

But each blow of yours
hammers steel into shape.

One day you wouldn't be able
to wish me away,
not when there are many of me.

Sunday, February 16, 2014

I'm scared of falling in love.

I'm scared of surrendering
my whole soul to the most powerful
illusion that ever fools man.

For me falling in love would be
seeing a mirage of an oasis upon
the desert of my lonely heart.

I'll trudge several painful miles
to go the distance towards this
beautiful projection of all my dreams.

I'll grow weary with each step i take,
till i find it's never been there.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Sallekhana

I've tried to describe the Jain ritual of Sallekhana, which is fasting to death. The vow of sallekhana is taken when one feels that one's life has served its purpose; when one has no wishes/ambition/desires left, and no responsibilities remaining in life. It is also allowed in cases of terminal disease or great disability. The purpose is to purge old karmas and prevent the creation of new ones. If you want to know more about it, you may read 'The Nun's Tale' in a book called 'Nine Lives' by William Dalrymple. You may also see the wikipedia page on Sallekhana. Here's the link- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sallekhana. 

Sallekhana is not suicide. 

Sallekhana can never be 
a violent reckless freefalling 
plunge into that self-destructive 
hellward spiral born of despair. 

Yes, Sallekhana is a fast 
unto death, but is death the End? 

Isn't the human body a mere 
vehicle that takes the soul on 
its journey towards the greatest Truth? 

Can one life ever be enough 
to know all there is to know? 
For the body is an object 
that will slowly come to ruin. 
One day it will fail to serve you. 

Death by Sallekhana is just 
like phasing out an old car as
lovingly and gently as one 
weans a babe off the Mother's breast. 

Monday, January 27, 2014

Predator

It is a starving animal.

It's mean angry and scary
when lean with hunger.

Purity of purpose
has sharpened its senses.

No smell or sight or sound
can hijack its attention
away from prey.

Even when hunger
burns out its insides
it's never too weak
for the thrill of a chase.

It needs to strike with ferocious deftness and
inflict pain by ripping tender flesh with dagger claws.

It needs to watch its prey's futile struggle
till it goes slack in its jaws.

More than blood it needs to taste power.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Poets United Mid-Week Motif ~ Equality

The colour of your skin is a
function of sunlight and genes.

It serves to protect you from
the harshest rays of the sun.

The contours of your body
are a map of your homeland.

They tell the tale of survival
in various rugged terrains.

Be proud of what you're endowed with
and enlighten those foolish

frogs confined to wells of
stagnant notions of beauty.

Remind them that Nature made all with equal love
and show them the vast sea of diversity.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Aurora (alliterative) Australis

In the coldest corners of our world
on the longest darkest winter nights
Celestial flames lick the sky in twirls. 

Fiery red and green dance violent whirls 
against velvet black backdrop unfurled 
by God for this dazzling play of light
in the coldest corners of our world 
on the longest darkest winter nights.