1The argumentMarch 31, 2011The argument here seemed interminable.The blue hills were a mere haze in the trees,I mean each of them, the hills, and the treesCrow-caws at dawn, train-sounds from afarThe wakeup song of God in early morning.A mere kitsch of a song will not release usFrom the tyranny of this gridlocked mind,The sport in the gallery, the dark glassesOn pretty noses, bare shoulders against redA gaggle of crazy market men wild with joyAt the pantomimes of other people’s playGiant projectors with phantoms of playersComing from the world’s end with red ballsAs if they run you run, and when they squirmIn their pants, in your living room’s cornerYou squirm in your hot pants, red and dead.It is this thought, under our felt caps, freshFrom the warm sunshine of other people’s time.The argument goes on endlessly in filled hallsIn play-grounds like a salivary thread flowingFrom the silky spider-work in our home corners.In our argument we conquer the world in cup.
2EditMarch 30, 2011This here picture I have producedIn a visual of an early morning lightWhen pain needed balm in the backOf nerve-ends tautness of the nightAnd editing blues of much saturation.You and I were trying to edit detailEmotion that cut thinking at its back.The morning needlessly brought poetry.Poetry once produced cannot be editedBecause it is there in your front lobe.But I cannot seem to edit all that detailFrom this night of life when it occurred.I cannot edit the colour of my dreamsNor change the depth of field in them.My picture seems shorn of all depthAs I am caught fishing in the fish-eye.I want to know who is editing all thisBefore morning hand of night visionIt is the time of happen, the horoscopeThe blazing Saturn planet that ruled lifeAnd many unexpected things happened
3In the belly at most hours in the day.It is in the belly again that it happenedOf tiny cells that grew without permissionIn a splurge of the body, behind the backAnd an inside has to go of a bag of beings.Twenty five times blue rays have to touchAs if it is the morning sun on the patio.I cannot seem to edit the noise in the bellyThe fears rising in the depths of its bluesThe little blue powder, its magnificent rays.
4DissolvingMarch 29, 2011I look at the possibility seminally presentIn the current decay and body to dissolveLike an electric light-bulb that disappearsIn the bright sunlight as the day breaks.My body’s light shall dissolve in momentsInto the general daylight of a sunny dayAnd as the day burns I shall slowly dissolveWith the pain of light’s merger into light.You know the merger of light in the darkIs easy on our body and feels like a breezeBut the merger of light in light feels likeGetting back into the claustrophobic spaceFrom where we had all emerged years ago.We had come there from nothing and willDissolve in the space of nothing from there.
5Fear of flyingMarch 28, 2011My flights must go on uninterruptedPast the white clouds and air pocketsWhen the pilot announces turbulence.I make my worship of planet SaturnWith a ring of blazing fire in the sky.Back home, I worship the Saturn godIn oil and flowers, turmeric and milk.On the land my flights crash on housesBut there is a near-chance they crashOn slithering snakes of the deep forest.They can crash on real flying sky-birdsThough it is too much of a coincidence.I make that happen when I choose to.It is my dream; I can make it realistic.My dreams are stories made in the pillow.They are made of bile, acid and belly-fearI have got them from her belly and his skull.
7The flyMarch 27, 2011We do not know it when we lie dead in the grassAs the spring breeze would gently play with our hair.Others do not know that they are dead from usThough they are alive, up and about on their feet.The fly on our flowers is perhaps alive on us tooWhen it would buzz about us as if we are aliveWhen our ears are now bright yellow marigolds.The fly is blissfully unaware that it is dead from us.
8SynopsisMarch 26, 2011A running commentary examines my lifeIn thread and bare, while it is going on liveWithin me, in this business of life, with noneFrom outside peering in my curious window,So I have the satisfaction of an examined life.I am living my life entirely real-time, you see.I do not like visitors to look in the peep-holeWhen I am knitting eye-brows humorouslyExamining my life by extended commentary.Right now I fear others not worrying about meWhile I am grey in chair and crumpled sheets.I worry about paucity of metaphors for the day,As I think of others not peering in my window.I worry about the synopsis, my examined life.
9PushMarch 25, 2011A little push is all we can think about.A little shove, friend, is all that is neededTo push the leaky boat into blue waters.So a decrepit eighty year old poet says,In the margins, nicely to the night skyHis pale moon remembering all night.The boat is on anchor in house balconyHaving come adrift in the last season’s sea.The tree’s shadows love it in the balcony.The timbers are still there in sea-cracksWith the wood scent of the forest intact.Their chambers have nice wooden planksThat will make warm embers this winter.(Taking off on At Eighty by Edwin Morgan (1920-2010) , theScottish poet whose boat got the push in the last season)
10SunsetMarch 24, 2011Sunset comes hastily before volumes of trafficIn the road of you-and-me fist- fights of chaosWhere we fight pitched night battles in a warSuch as in the confused Peloppenesian war .In the car the chilly fellow is hot on film heroesIn scraps of badly accented radio gags like onesThe driver man will enjoy and you sure say no.Our drivers have eclectic tastes in film musicWhere everyone seems to flow as if yesterday.This sun comes in their eyes like a dust particle.The driver makes noises from his nose to the road.His mobile phone rings to come home before sun.My monument must already be in its russet hues.But many cars and traffic policemen are in between.My sun has already sunk to the depths of belly.
11Women in the morningMarch 23, 2011On the road before their houses are womenIn turquoise and blue, their heads and backBent with earth- sweeping and water sprinklingThe way elephants do in the morning forest.Their mothers-in-law had done it in their time.Like them the earth smelled of their bodies.And the children wait for school in uniformsFor yellow buses to stop before wet patchesCareful not to tread on rice powder designsTheir mothers had made on their wet patches.Their designs are pretty but highly transientOnly to be eaten by sparrows of the morning.The sparrows have become heavy in stomachsOf rice powder eating from beauty designs.But the sparrows are now not there in mirrors.In the afternoons they were pecking in mirrorsAt their sworn enemies in the mirrors of womenWhen they combed oiled plaits for the evening.The birds have perhaps gone of morning sicknessOr of far too many cell phone calls in their air.The women love their afternoon gossip ,you see.Luckily mothers-in-law are now gone for good,
12Like sparrows that have gone from the mirrors.
13The edgeMarch 21, 2011Contemplating quietly on the edgeWe may not now tip over nor do anything.Actually the breeze we are waiting forWill come only by the fall of our nightWhen noisy crickets will wake up to makeTheir weird noises under the inky sky.We are now not on the edge of thought.The precise word we are looking forDoes not come easily nor bring peaceIn a stomach upset with understanding.Our body is too full of understandingIn the snake-folds of a sleeping hoseNestled safely in an almond-like case.The crank case breaks with winter frostBut only when understanding vanishesThrough the chinks in its woven plates.When our understanding vanishes we stare,In eyes of nothing, at the nothing of wall.We will then teeter on the edge of thought.Your words will then sound as soft poetryLike a breeze in our understanding treeMeaningless but high art in its bleakness.Their syllables will drop softly in our mindsLike the midnight breeze in the pipal tree.
14We shall then hear you entirely by your lipsAnd make poetry words directly from them.
15SpontaneousMarch 20, 2011We are now merely being spontaneous.We chance upon phosphorous volcanoes;Wear sunglasses at the burning on the fringe.These volcanoes combust spontaneously.Their lines form smooth monument stepsFlowing from noon prayers in white shirtsDescending in a series of steps to povertyAnd plastic bags flying about in the breeze.It is the dust in the air, the smooth powderOf the earth that flies in our face like leaves.We wear duly our sun-clothes on our facesAs if we are girls riding to school on mopedsSpontaneously looking good for the marriage.We wear our nondescript masks that make usLook like others who wear nondescript masksWhich hardly hide nondescript souls under.We are spontaneous in our poetry of the night.Our words burst like birds studded in night treesThat suddenly erupt from them at distant gunshotsOr mountain-breaking sounds of the nearby sky.
17The super-moonMarch 20, 2011In the evening the moon quietly climbed our roofTo peer in our skylight from his perch on the tiles.We almost thought he would jump into our kitchenAnd flood our mosaic floor with his dapper light.When we slurped our porridge with hungry tonguesIt sounded so different, this deep slurp from throat.The porridge tasted funny, a tad sweet on the sideBut somewhat like the broth we daily give our cowsIn their sheds with the moonlight sweetening its taste.Luckily we keep our bedroom windows shut upstairsOne can imagine what he could do with our minds.(On 19th March, 2011(today) ,we witnessed the super-moon,closest to the earth in 18 years)
18Note-takingMarch 19, 2011When you take notes you are not youBut a would-be gray non-conformist guyWearing pantaloons into early seventies,The ones you reach way before the leg.You collect all your notes in the shirt pocketTo discard them when you reach home.Or wear them like polka dots on your shirtTo hide the existence of small holes under.When you take notes be adequately surrealYou cannot make sense of life otherwise.
19Lizards in dreamsMarch 18, 2011Lizards often come in dreams at dawnAs some snakes do in midnight dreams.Here I stand on the top of a black rockAnd drop a tiny pebble on the lizardThat sways his head up and down at meFrom his perch in a recess of the rock.He seems calling me down from his sky.I am calling him down to my own earth.My pebble hits him but he flies toward meAs lizards often do in our atavistic past,On the brown plains, dotted with shrubsIn steppes that stretch to the green hills.That was my dream at dawn but I wonderWhat I was doing in the lizard’s dream.
20SmellsMarch 17, 2011We were trying to re-create experiences in wordsOf our walks, balancing on narrow embankments,Through the standing paddy rice, in morning light.Our words are stated experiences created first timeSemantically but later by invoking smells of things.We remember sitting on a cloth chair in the shadowOf a vegetable creeper that had flung green snakesIn our faces striking our noses with their green smell.We had grandmother’s wet cloth drying in the sunThat had smelt of grandmother and afternoon sun.When it was later hung on the wall peg in a bundleIt had smelt of grandmother and the iron of the peg.In the sanctum’s anteroom, God’s clothes smelledOf camphor and wilted jasmines and burnt oil lamps.The priest’s smile smelled of holy water and camphor.His words spoken in high baritone smelled of God.
21FamiliarMarch 17, 2011All that seems familiar on the golden beachWhere the wind blows in the sand like madAnd a wind child moves in waves, like waterWith fun people riding them up and down.There are shacks on the hot sands for peopleAnxious for experience, for history’s sake,When history is the only future of a couple.Their gold coins glisten at the bottom of the sea.They bravely hang there in a glider in the sun.Other people go about in beery stomachsWe are on the lookout for some sun and foodA little honey on the side and some moon.
22Black leavesMarch 16, 2011Look out the window to see black leavesOf cold argument, in the middle of a road.Usually green they turn black at nightIn the blood coursing in your black veins,Wearing the silk-soft colour of a black nightThe inky back of a night, out of the moonOnly this fortnight ago, held by the stars.Woman wears a black flowing argumentOf a black night, this night and this day.Her golden pendant flickers like the starsIn the black night of argument, in white neck.In the train we ate ourselves a black forestOf night, that turned green leaves blackAs the train cut through the black nightWith a white surgeon’s light on its forehead.Tea leaves stayed black at the night’s bottom.
23LightMarch 15, 2011What came up was light, a mere tonal wordWe were searching for the real thing, you see,In the blind alley, making slow way for our eyesIn the living bats that fluttered against light.We had to make do with a mini-mobile light.A foul gutter loomed here in the corner of smell.Some grey rats could crop up there, their tailsTracing lines of black gutter water on the roadAnd of the dead ones that smelled bad in the holes.These creatures smell bad when recently dead.History’s dead smell nice in their alleyways.Daylight fills their spaces in the foundationsOf houses that once had people strutting aboutAmong copper-red brick walls, with cold nichesThat had oil lamps burning late into the night.Their clothes smelt nicely of naphthalene ballsWhen they had differently dressed men in them.Their walls are not here, nor the flickering lampsIt is our space that has swallowed all their light.A pity it is only the smells that have remained.
24Shoe- lacesMarch 14, 2011Each time he bends down to tie his shoe-lacesHe sees an inverted world, of a clumsy blue skySupervalently fallen on a sprawling globe-earthSo he does not know the blue sky from the earth.When he looks up he finds breasts loomingLike a Pacific isle tsunami on the plains of carsBrown-mud and paper houses, people and flotsam.His world-view gets distorted of caring mothersAnd nubile daughters with overflowing breasts.The lace tying may have triggered such a view.But it is the girls’ eyes that stare at him of passingHis fantasies played out daily in their noon shadows.His clumsiness does not lie in their overflowingnessBut in the topsy-turvy of a dizzy earth-sky sceneLargely drawn from the tube of the small screen.
25RelativeMarch 14, 2011She is not blood-relative but of fleshIn the dark night she is my dark fleshAnd my bones and marrow of hunger.An ontology of her bones clearly placesMy own on top of her incumbent bones.Beyond the rail track her bones live.Her blood traces a train’s light beamIn the pitch dark of my own midnight.There I wait her outside for the creakOf a broken string cot that has saggedOf many heavy bodies and light pockets.Sorry I forget the name of the bones.
26The heatMarch 13, 2011This heat may be unwelcome on young skinBut not on old eyes where it becomes pure silver,A home to dense shadows that emerge slowlyFrom vaporous layers hovering on a hill stream.Here in the trees it is green and joy and twigsQuiet birds in the noon and their day-dreaming.In the temple, afternoons are heavy with sleep.Bare feet hop-skip from one hot tile to anotherAs if they are doing a brisk trot of a fire dance.The neem tree sheds flowers of powdered heatOffering a bitter foretaste of its summer fruit.
27IconoclastsMarch 13, 2011The crowds fascinate us in their latent wisdom.Lately they have turned rebels for a cause.They are now our iconoclasts on the lake side.Our lake is now blooming heads like lotuses.The torsos they left behind recite rebel poetry.(Crowds have recently vandalised statues of history’s great men ofculture installed on the lakefront in our city)
28SoftMarch 12, 2011Soon we went about our poet’s businessIn the wooded paths of human historyTrying to tread softly on delicate heartsIn some ancient history of poetry kind.We saw some turquoise tourist braceletsGlass bangles that clinked in a poet’s storyAnd the shadows they cast on brown faces.It was golden evening always and sun set.The mountains sat there immobile and blueTheir egos went home in the white clouds.Even as we wrote poetry we had to laughWhile not unduly muttering under breath.Our silken pajamas were yet to come backFrom the roof up where they were drying.In the meantime we had to whisper softlyOur cumulative secrets into the winter air.Beyond the parapet the sparrows hoppedAnd chirped incessantly in the morning sunAs if they were ripe golden brown wheatThat waved heads softly in the grass breeze.The sparrows here under the window heavedTheir brown bodies as if they were playing
29Music, in our computer, from the snow hillsAnd yellow pipal leaves fell softly on the wind.Our temples were soft in the outlines of pagodasWhere they scraped the sky ignoring the wind.As we looked up at the top of God’s golden pillarWe looked softly at the contours of our own life.Everything came home as if it was in our motherWhere it had happened, in our beginnings in her.
30MovementMarch 10, 2011We have come to movement at last.Actually our inertia was inherent in usIn our present incarnations of tyresThat have lost stomach for the road.Hung by a fiber rope on the highwayOur path remained where we were,As indicators to passing motoristsOf tyre service available at the spot.A passing wind enables us to pretendOur continued lateral movements.
31SnowMarch 09, 2011At sixty, it matters little if you have not slowly climbedThe snow hills to look a frozen phallus god in the eye.You have now all the time for your thawed hypothesesLike had I or not become or done this and this, then.The snowy beard on your face flows in white clouds.But of little use is looking precipitously into the abyssOnly to incur a plaster cast on legs like snow in flakes.Had not my granddad happened then in hoar and frostWould be less flawed in the vast frozen wastes of time.
32In situMarch 08, 2011We reveal ourselves well, in the night.Our cell growth had taken place, in situAnd mostly localized behind our tummy.We sure love words, Latin and medical.Our surgeons came in white and greenDiscussing the in situ growth in us as ifIt was a pretty Ming vase found in situWhere they dug up for ancient cultures.The surgeons use mostly medical epithetsBut their scalpels seem like sharp flintsDiscovered in their ancient excavations.We reveal ourselves mostly, in the nightOur fears come from dug up ground levelsWhere they lie buried and in situ for yearsAnd threaten to turn invasive at night.
33PrayerMarch 07, 2011We stood in a whiff of fragranceOf him that stood behind the curtains.His water tasted sweet and fragrantWhen taken to the lips in a slurp.We thought of him in her destinyAs it unfolded for her in white wallsIn a wilted flower within her fleshWhich once housed tiny beings.It was a mere thought, this fear for lifeAn existential question, a silent prayer.
34HeapsMarch 07, 2011From our ground levels we went on to heapsOf vehicular chaos, of racing men and carsAmong heaps of crawling people on the road.Their eyes shone unduly wet with money.Some were anxious to reach dizzy money heapsIn cars wedged between trucks of bearded driversThat spewed black smoke from their behinds.Government bosses looked tall on their paper heaps.Citizens walked like writhing bundles of caterpillarsThat were waiting for decisions to transform themInto full-fledged butterflies of the finest of colors.
35WaitingMarch 06, 2011I stand in the computer luminously waiting.I am looking for the flash, the glistening wordLying in wait in the dark folds of the night.On the other side of the world is a womanHer womanhood starkly waiting in a white roomTo be dispossessed by the cruelty of a body.A mature night is waiting for beauty-dawnFrom its orange memories of yesterday’s duskWhen over tea we were sitting on a string cotOn the highway and waited for the sun to sink.
36Moon beingsMarch 05, 2011We live, a little on the other side of the moon,In a pallid half-disc of the moon in the day sky.We say a little consequently, but withdraw more.Our poems tantalise beings ,from outer ridgeTheir words tease from its marble concavity.
37Shadows in the eveningMarch 05, 2011The old woman’s skin squeals fitfully.She oozes water and fear now and thenAnd gets agoraphobic nightly in skin.The thoughts in mind are submissionsTo shadows present in layers of water.There are layers of water in her old skin,In subcutaneous streams, one on the other.The vapors they emit are sulfur fumes.Her feet follow each other in a pageant.The professor said the mind made themWalk like an ancient petite Chinese girlWith delicate feet not made for distances.She struts and frets in the hour and is more.These are high performances on life’s stage.We need appreciative audience for claps.
38KeyMarch 04, 2011Her clean bill of health defies explanation.The skin holds the key to it, not the heartWhich is a pump much like the water motorRecently started to air-cool her sleeping.Her nightmares generally describe states.Behind the dusty stairs, the water-coolerLays her mingled past, in dark shadows.Her skin emits vapors, like a sun-drenched bog.As if it was moisture of the monsoon cloudsOr the expectant sultriness of the east coast.She drinks ten litres of pure aqua by night.Was it okay to drink straight from the bottle?But doctor, in sleep it pours from her being!
39WildcatMarch 03, 2011A wildcat purrs softly in the back of the carA random thing, a new geo-physical mapping.When material things like our flesh are madeSecurity checks will work on fur at the airport.Flesh and bones are white powder, brown ashes.When not thinking, thinking flesh is mere bonesThinking about the fleshy continuums of bones.A little flesh, some powdered bones, colored fluidAre all it takes to make us in plasma and chemistry.Our bones are adequate noises of disintegrating.We look for our nature cures in the black alley.Our bone powder is mere sound in the ankles.It is words that ooze in the flesh of our throatsJust like salt water that wells up in seeing holes.
40SweatMarch 02, 2011Our sweaty anxiety is in fact a pre-historic thing,A primordial phenomenon of our ancestorsLike single-horned or several-armed creaturesBestowing powers on dancers in the woods.Our bodies are now airy souls that feel free to flyFrom svelte conference rooms, plush hotel loungesInto shredded clouds floating in the rarefied air.We promptly put on our shields, on horsebacksAnd set out to conquer worlds that will conquer usUnless conquered, those lie beyond the mountainsThose that will descend with armies of elephantsThose that will bring about our decline and fall.We are anxious our thermostats will not functionAnd we may yet sweat under our anxious armpits.
41MourningMarch 02, 2011Morning seems a good time for mourningIn the breezy season of spring and March.That is when you have to mourn the deadIn flowing white garments, in vacant eyes.You wake up droopy-eyed, dream-freshBut your time is still ticking to the noon.When noon comes the day feels heavyIn the warm weariness of a siesta time.Your eyes half-close with sleep in them.Your garments become sleep-crumbledAnd their creases won’t hide black grief.In the evening loss becomes a far ghostBehind the coconut as the sun slowly sinks.As the night creeps in, sleep comes to eyesAnd absence feels like the only viable fact.
42WaterMarch 01, 2011There are blue striped pipes bringing waterTo empty into intense human-made bogsSitting on the roadside between future houses.There are here no crocodiles, only builders.There are no prole-born brothers in duressOnly workers in torn tents under a blue skyWedged between tall skeletons of houses.Houses are made replacing rocks in bushesMurdering rocks slowly by sharp knivesAnd rhythmic pickaxes that fall heavilyOn their summer bodies petrified in time.Often water softens rocks, makes them amenableTo slow murder by persuasion and perseverance.
43PatternsMarch 01, 2011On the beach sand were webbed feet patternsAnd unshod feet, one after the other, of walkersOn a rising sea of memories on a moonlit night.A hum went on like the breath of a sleeping child.Its sound patterns were like those of shore palms,Largely specters of lonely trees with wind in hair.Behind them were abandoned customs warehousesOf old brick patterns visible through flakes of time.A liquid moon stood at the centre of white cloudsTheir serrated patterns ruled out possibility of rain.Green fish nets formed a sea-like wave patternWith dark fishermen who sat on their haunchesMending broken nets with honeycomb patterns.
44Looking for the wordFebruary 28, 2011The word eludes in the night;Pushes you into its blackness.Change the colour, putter aboutIn the wild wastes of the nightAs though in a wandering gardenNot to pluck flowers and leavesBut to think about far peopleIn white hospitals, blue overalls.It is the white which outshinesThe black night in fluorescence.And the blue falls in the night.
45The rail -bridgeFebruary 28, 2011The train crossed the span against great ruckus.Miles before, we had thought of the coming bridgeWhen the train would stop greeting dancing polesTo enter sound, in a cacophony of steel and sound.The bridge would then disappear in forgot soundAnd the train would soon catch up with the world,In a victory of silence over sound, of sun over shadow.We knew soon there will be another clackety- clacketyCrossing of water and wind, more sound and fury.
46The tableFebruary 27, 2011The old table sat there gloomilyWith a checked cloth on its face.Poetry was far from its thoughts,Only a carpenter of wood to fixThe creakiness in one of its legs.The carpenter teases it from afar.He comes now and now, does not.He is not involved with our poetry.In the balcony our wet clothes hangRevealing tiny bits of the blue skyTheir tantalizing shadows will enter,When the table will embrace them.But that is a story of the afternoon.The table cloth has a dusty history.Under it lie its innermost secrets.But poetry was not in its thoughts.All it wants is a carpenter of wood,Who will fix the creak in its knee.
47PicturesFebruary 26, 2011In the night the pictures become clearOut of a shrill whistle piercing the dark.Words become thoughts, vivid picturesIn the whir of an electric fan in the room.It is a sound that comes through a childA child of the earth and of a climbed wall,A tree with leaves plucked into pocketsFor worship of a stone god in vermilionAnd the yellow softness of a beginning god.It is my god nestled in a heap of yellow rice.It is my women of rustling silks of the air,A fragrance of worship flowers and flame.It is the flame that dies in floral fragranceBut re-lives to verify my continued living.
48Remembered silenceFebruary 25, 2011I do not remember silence alwaysIn the midst of noises in my insideExcept in the very brief interludesWhen a noise holds over to another.It is the silence at the edge of soundThe brief highway of green paddy fieldsThat occurs between town and townIn a populous countryside whereNoisy chickens often cross the roadAnd men are found lying on the roadIn helpless pools of drunken silence.I remember more the awkward silenceThat rules when dialogue breaks downAnd the answers in her eyes do notAddress the questions in your throat.I remember those awkward silencesWhen words occur in sonorous soundsAnd meaning ceases to flow between menWhen expression loses its life function.
49MeaningFebruary 25, 2011In the bus a tiny girl suggested many levels,Layers of meaning filtering into a cosy busFrom the information spread about in the busAround the driver seeing in the rear view mirrorAnd the passers-by who vaguely whizzed past him.It was for me to make my own meaning for meSynchronising my plane of existence with hers.At another level a fuzzy sun set on the still lakeAs if the collected lake had to speak for the dayWithout the orange sun blazing in its other side.We had to make meaning from the tree by the lake.
50On the sidewalk men sipped tea from a red kiosk.They made their personal meaning out of the timeAnd the information in the trod dust of the road,In the bricks that piled to be built in a house wallIn the stray dogs that sat listlessly on the roadAnd in the dry leaves that fell on the parked car.
51NightsFebruary 24, 2011We love nights because they cut out frillsAnd get down to the bare bones very fast.They soften the contours to gray outlines.Like poetry they suppress needless details,Abolish borders; make a sky of the earth.The tree stands there brooding in the darkForgetful of its death by last year’s lightning.They even put night birds on its branches.The night fields become a vast promontoryWhere the sky and the earth become oneAs if the paddy is actually grown in the sky.In the night the bushes behave like moving,As if they are lazy bears on the wait for food.The mountain in the distance stands abolished.God knows where the clouds went from its top.Everything is drowned in the night of the sky.
52The pastFebruary 23, 2011The poet reiterates the past is a dream.Our body being of the past is but a dreamA mere dream in somebody else’s dream.His dream was part of my dream, beingThe grand dream of the cosmic scheme.I have come to know the past did not existBut I merely seemed to have dreamed it.We are such stuff our dreams are made ofNot just in the bard’s sense or in spirit-talk.Our dreams are so much inter-connected.When spirits talk ,bodies vanish like spirits.Our bodies disappear in chloroform smellOn the table under a green cloth of scalpel.Some times they just disappear in clay-potsInto flowing rivers, melting snow-mountains.Our spirits are mere words, some tautology.Our bodies do not exist except in dreams.
53Black comedyFebruary 22, 2011When we say a tennis ball it is a ping-pongWe love hyperboles for their graphic quality.We know the tumor can’t be so large inside,When the body believed it was a pin-head.We are playing our little dramas in our headThat is how the thing plays out in our script.Our script is black comedy, a fun thing we playWhen we are desperate about people we love.
54The helicopterFebruary 22, 2011We see several hands stretching to the helicopter,Of dry mouths that quiver with hope at its whir.A mystery how bodies can pile to form a pagoda.And why some bodies are always found on the copterWhile other bodies rise from the dusty ground-earth,And bodies here have to reach out to bodies up there.
55DiminishFebruary 21, 2011Inside we were afraid to diminish.The flowers have come to bloomTiny green mangoes are on the wayIt is now March and hot is less yet.Soon there will be a rain showerThat will diminish their flowers;There will be diminished fruits.There will be diminished imagesTheir colours shall become shadowsA few mere greys of March summer.Mist is migraine and fallen leaves,Unripe fruits helpless on the earth.
56DiscoverFebruary 21, 2011We are discovering needless things gleefully,The hidden light behind things, under stonesWith unusual creeping-crawling creatures.All we love is the other fine things in our homes.We may eat them now or consume a little later.Our tongues will wrap around them softly in tip.That man under the tree has a halo around him.But he deals in violet light of an exquisite varietyThat shows up our bones as in an x-ray machine.Our flesh erupts in goose-bumps if we hear him.All we want is light to show where our eats are.
57DisappearFebruary 20, 2011Wonder if I can disappear from this spaceAnd feel my absence in things, in wallsIn the wall pictures, in the trees outsideAnd in the blue sky that rises above them,Like a sparrow that pecks at the mirrorAnd hops away into its silver innards.Here I stand before the computer tubeAnd disappear into it sometimes, vaguelyTouching the outer walls of the worldBut come back soon to its inner walls
59Memories of memoriesFebruary 20, 2011In the evening we smelled talcumAnd tiny white queens of the nightAs we passed by the stairs of room.Once out we saw talcum-fresh girlsWho giggled for nothing in the sun.Their eyes had memories of the noonWhen their books appeared too heavyAnd their eyelids dropped for sleep.Their eyes had memories of nightsWhen they sat reading by the bulb.They had memories of rain-mothsThat had embraced dark death on it.Their faces had memories of soft mothersWaiting to cuddle them for the last time,Of noisy horse-carts that took them homeTo toddler brothers with running noses.
60Her storyFebruary 19, 2011Her story has become a mere pain in the rearA sardonic statement on death’s smiling faceA lecture-to, a curl on lips, a verbose dictum.A mere smear from her brought a smile on himIn all that was going on, the white halogen lightsThe fragrance of silks, the whir of beauty-dance.
61RambleFebruary 18, 2011Sticking to the point is so tiresomeLike an old man’s fixation on wearingA woolen muffler in the evening walk,The one that shuts out all street noisesMaking him prisoner of the inward hum.You get into the streets and ramble onIn the dusty labyrinthine town streets.I see absolutely no point in sticking.That makes you committed for life.In the end we come to the same thing.On the side street people sleep on cotsNot to admire the moon but rest backs.Buffaloes stand there with vacant eyesTheir udders full with reluctant milk.The old man is groaning in his blanket.He is still sticking to his point, his times.The train yells at people on the tracksIts flanks burst with hanging men.The train sticks to its point, they to it.It is fun to ramble, when other peopleAnd other things stick to their points
63JokesFebruary 17, 2011We are on the lookout for jokes,Not two-penny cell-phone jokes.They must tickle ribs, just in case.We mean if you feel itchy there.The macabre ones go in the wild.They do not strike you anywhereOn the ribs or in the belly-button.They do not come on cell-phonesOr fill shirt -pockets with splutter.They just happen in your stomach,In blood-stream, in the upper cage.As if they have dropped from above.You don’t know it when they hit.
64FatherFebruary 17, 2011Here strangers pass by, themselves alone.You try to find a snake in the hole for effectAnd actually find a snake but no effect.This snake is a water snake of summer.White clouds drift in the sky near the tree.You are alone, all the time, in your mind.You think of he who drifted away like a cloud,When you were still in swaddling-clothes.You had white clouds for swaddling-clothes.
65SilenceFebruary 16, 2011There is hoar and frost in the leafless tree.An old man has wisps of snow on his beard.Church spires rise up to the white sky.Their bells tinkle in frosty silence there,In a silence of the art, of contemplation.There is silence here, of paper crackle.In the kitchen there is clatter of cups.There is the blare of an oncoming train,A distant dog’s barks in morning’s silence.Silence is in the wall, hung on a sound.
66CadencesFebruary 14, 2011Here I write, dipping quietlyInto remote words, thoughtsOf other people and other me.Words that spring from otherNightly minds, nightly bodies.Thoughts that form cadencesIn the smooth flow of the night.
67Visit to the Jagannath* templeFebruary 14, 2011He ruled our puny minds and frail bodies.He smiled from a painted black wooden face-He that made body things and airy souls.A mechanised drum beat its stick in rhythmAnd a yellow camphor flame lit his face.We duly took his sanctified water to lipsAnd dabbed his holy sweet to closed eyes.We took a closer look at him while returningHe was like one of us, with a doting wife by himAnd a loving brother standing in attention .
68(*Jagannath literally means the Lord of the Universe)
69ShuffleFebruary 13, 2011Let me shuffle them and see beach peopleIn the rising waves of the sunset hour.My light falls on them, on pliant faces,On their hair in sea-filtered sunlight,Of the soft December skies of deep hue.On the beach they are just things, fine objects.Flooded in strange light, they lose their faces.
70VoiceFebruary 13, 2011Actually there is nothing with voice.Here my mind was held up to scrutinyFor my voice that needed to be raised.I can see the picture of mind’s knotsIn folded vicissitudes of inner spaceThat resonated with shrill bird calls,Flashes of memory, failure thoughtsThat soon faded away in a foggy past,A fall from a fecund sky, a brick wallThat returned all pharyngeal sound.Actually there is nothing with my voiceIt is just that I cannot scream loud enoughTo be heard on the other side of the river.
71CrazyFebruary 12, 2011In the night’s glittering wedding hallA crowd of sanity gave sidelong glancesTo this odd-ball of clothed crazinessWho holed you up in her gray craziness.You held her against her cousin’s bones.There was no country laziness in them.O you cousin, tell me where my meal,Thanks you for the plate she wheedlesOut of you .Excuse me sir, is she fromYour wedding party? Yes of course.Crazy people are in our wedding party;Wouldn’t I like her in the bride’s seat?(About a mentally challenged cousin of mine)
72PlaceFebruary 10, 2011In the rocking chair we are placed tightlyBehind the newspaper of all about places.There on the park bench shadows fall on usOf our several absences from thinking bodies.Dry leaves crunch below of remembered places.We then sleep on soft pillows in running trainsOf moving places and faster moving absences.Our desire for place is moving away from it.
73The owlFebruary 10, 2011At midnight the conch blows in a new start,The start of two new lives together of future.The owl is eternally welcome at midnight.Several owl-hoots echo in the wedding hallNot to betoken evil on the withered stumpBut to bring on back a seated wealth goddess.We welcome our owls in our own hoots.(At a marriage ceremony, women make owl-like sounds in order toinvite the Laxmi, the Goddess of Wealth who arrives on the back ofan owl)
74The intersectionFebruary 06, 2011At the intersection of truth and poetry,It does not at all matter if we prevaricate.Words do interfere by beauty and noise.We are not here speaking the real truthBut an almost truth, and if this is not it,Let the bodies speak, in their recedingIn their constant flux, movements away.
75Fait accompliFebruary 06, 2011A gray and sullen sky is up thereWith no flying birds frozen in it.I cannot paint all those birds backInto a seeming blue sky, tiny dotsOn the painted canvas of the world.My freedom is indeed at stakeAs I sure want my birds there.But I have to maintain proximityWith truth, with the real world,A kind of pretension of reality,In a verisimilitude of no birdsWhen no sun, but white clouds.I wonder why in the name of GodMy facts always come accomplished.
76MotherFebruary 05, 2011I thought he wouldn’t come, surelyNot with the body his mother has.Here, in her soul, there is quietnessOf resignation and in body, tautness.Mother’s body is yours, a fragmentIn the whole of your body, like mind,As you were a fragment once of her.If she dies, you die, in a piece of you.The rest of you will live with a hole.
78NowFebruary 04, 2011Now is a fragment of me in this spaceA fragment that lives and changes its shapeLike the amoeba of light changing feetA piece of the self growing by the hour.Now are my sounds coming alive at dawn ,The light that floats from the crack in my roofAnd drops of rain that texture my window,Dry leaves flying in the face of the wind.Now is fragment of time set in this me.
79Night thoughtsFebruary 03, 2011Night thoughts enter your bodyLike so much free-flowing waterAnd its top portion teems withIts many empty sounds, echoes.The body is your mind at night.The thoughts occur of livingUnder white sheets, iron cotsA shut window for winter cold,Of living, under eyes of sleep,In pajamas of strings loosedWhile dirty goods get splashedOn an old man’s quiet dignityUnder a pin-striped nightcap.In a prison uniform of thoughtsThe body is trapped in the mind.The night watchman’s stick hitsThe asphalt and your existenceIts tap accurately measures timeOn the asphalt of your existence.
81HearingFebruary 03, 2011I still hear the world in my ears.I hear the whoosh of the west wind,The noise of the empty wordAnd clatter of senses rubbingAgainst the body of the windAs if they are my very bonesThat move lazily in my knee.As I walk in my defunct dreamsI do not need the hearing aid.
82FlashesFebruary 03, 2011The cold seeps in our head.Our head echoes with a humOf the trees in the sea wind,A mere silence of the mind.That is when we look forFlashes of light, in sound.
83LightFebruary 01, 2011We talk here of light of everythingNot merely of dispeller of darknessIn the bat smelling ancestor caveBut of lightness of being, bearableBecause it does recur but may not.Our lightness becomes when the pillReaches deep recesses to dent painAnd lightness dawns in lower being.Our lightness happens in the moodNot in its several sing-song swings.Our lightness happens in the sun,When stone shines in its splendour.Our lightness floats in white beautyIn the textures of weightless words.Our words are lightness of the spiritWhen they come out of being onlyTo drift away in the sea of the night.
84(The faint allusion is to The Unbearable Lightness of Being, a novelby Milan Kundera)
85We long for the nightFebruary 01, 2011We do not look all that pretty in this daylight.Our beauty emerges slowly as night creeps upOn our houses and on our bodies, in starlight.Bright arc lights show us up as divine figuresBut without them, the stars do their job fine.It is the burning sun above our coiffured headsThat makes us look pretty ordinary and human.The way warm rays fall on us makes us squirmIn our clothed bodies, arms covered in glovesAnd our heads in scarves shielding from heat.We long for long silky nights that make us pretty.
86Belly-fearFebruary 01, 2011We now remember those smells of nightfall,On the mud track lined with thorny bushes.As night falls the bushes become ominous.Several night ghosts reside in thorny bushesThose make their ghostly food in the night.As our bullock cart proceeds toward the nightThe bells tinkle in rhythm in bullocks’ necksDrowning the dreadful shrieks of the ghosts.When the stream appears, the bullock’s bellsStop clanging for a while when pale ghostsResume their shrieks from their bush homes.We, the kids in the cart, hug mummy’s bellyWondering how the bullock fights its belly-fearWhen the bells stop clanging in the darkness.
87MilkJanuary 31, 2011There is wind in the dry leaves on the floor.The busy red ants are crawling up to the bark.The sky looks like rain will come and hail.The water sound there seems as if fallingOn the slanting tin roof but it is the squirrelOr some love- pigeons shuffling feet on it.Here I wait in the front porch of my houseAfraid, deep within that the milk has boiledAnd is overflowing whitely in the kitchen stove.Footsteps are easily drowned in dew- wet leavesAnd I am unable to go in to check the milk.
88Turning pointJanuary 29, 2011Somewhere on the journey, near the banyan treeI meet this perfect stranger in a colored headgearThat sits heavily on his head, his legs swathedIn silken dress-cloth, his torso decked in camphor.I see him come riding on a horse, sword in hand.I decide to join him aloft, in the journey beyondAnd now as I look back in the hoof-dust of his horseMy village becomes a mere blur in the blue hills.
89TrustJanuary 28, 2011You begin with a cloud of trust above youYour rubber house will not close in on youAnd when you come out to breathe fresh airThere is no poisoned air and the dirty aquaWill not do you in or the long rubber hoseWill not throttle you in your crying throat.Who is this one who had decided to give youA chance to exist ,borne out of a mere chanceCollision of particles in a big bang of bodiesLike the astral bodies singing the sky song?And now who is this another one ,years later,Who decided to give some one a chance to existOut of a similar collision in her inner spaceAnd you a chance to join this game of trust?
90GuiltyJanuary 28, 2011When I went to sleep yesterday nightI had to reckon this in my own failures.My sleepless thoughts were mainly of guilt.My long scroll stretched to the starlit sky.I tried to arch over the expanse of spaceTo see where the record of my guilt ends.In the back of my mind I have a feeling-Between us two I cannot be blamed for this .I now lay the blame for this at your door.
91MatterJanuary 26, 2011In the morning walk we thought of ourselvesAs mere matter, matter trying to coalesceWith other matter in a compulsive fashion,Man matter merging with woman matter-Destructible matter with destructible matter.The monk saw some bones and some fleshAn unusual matter that saw other matterIn a decomposed fashion ahead of its time.All the time we are making matter in thisFactory of the old matter merging to formNew matter which will do the same thing.This matter wants to control other matterAnd some times hastens the process of matterDecomposing ahead of time like the monk,In a compulsive urge to decompose matter.The matter is the same, monk or murderer.The urchin who broke the dog’s leg with a stoneWas just breaking down matter to its essentials.
92White flowers, dark creepersJanuary 26, 2011Muted conversations are heard in the streetIn the gray shadows of the houses of dusk.Women squat on the steps of their housesTo discuss their kids, husbands and neighbors.Their memories go back to other eveningsOf kids, drunk husbands and bad neighbors,Of the many pretty floral designs before housesOther women made in rice powder and color.The incense smoke from their four-armed godsEnters the streets, reaches up to the tall treesAnd electric wires, going up in silk-smooth swirls.As darkness sets tiny white flowers break outFrom loving mother creepers on the housesLike stars we often see burst on our roof at night.
94RememberingJanuary 24, 2011Remembering is a morning and some thoughtsThat swarm like those buzzing locusts in the airThose have descended from the far off alien skies,Their wings light and flapping to keep them alive.A child’s stick brings them down one at a time.You had nothing against them who were our guestsGuests from the plains of Siberia into our bushesThat had brought their memories, their thoughts.They had brought memories of many green leavesAt other places and other thoughts, other skiesBut you can only bring them down one at a time.
95The mosquitoJanuary 23, 2011The midnight mosquito is back in the earIt comes as a mere thought in the earlobeA buzz, that is, in an excruciating journey.I speak above the general din in the hallDo I hear less than I speak, in my tuning?Sometimes it is this old of the thoughts,A mere fear of the impossible in the darkA frightful young volcano in the nether bodyAs sleep comes distorted in the resting mindIn a mash-up of the living and the dead.When I lie in the plastic casket do I look,At the roof slab through its transparencySomehow contributing to the frigid roomThere in fourth floor in its un-swept dust?How can I add to anything up there withMy fixed stare where I cannot say all canAnd I am just a thing of the plastic casket,A thought buzzing like a mere mosquitoIn the earlobe, in the depths of this night?
100The crowdJanuary 20, 2011We dip into the mind of the crowd(Not sourcing the crowd as the geeksWould say under their light words)As the layers peel off in the internetRevealing the reader to the writerAnd vice versa in discursive modeIn a continuous text engagementAnd of images, virtual and sound.The crowd dips into a single manAs it dips into his tiny piggy bankAdding it all up to say it has wealth.The crowd is not a humongous mass.When it has things to say it says them.Its spiritual guru would say it all,What it likes to hear in heady incense.But there is the sorrow of the massesThe collective wailing of the crowdIn a black parody of all that goes onIn the recesses of its aggregate mind,A mash of bodies falling on the curbA bloody mess of an unwanted swordThe stupidity of a pantomime in blackIn a few burnished thrones and sashes.A boring repetition is all that they do
104The chain of beingJanuary 18, 2011At this time I wait for the big word,Rather for the bird of the deep night.It is this damn structure that preventsIt’s landing on the waste of the night.But it is now already moving on and outOf the limiting structure of beginning.The grasses wait in their levels of beingAs trees, animals and lesser creaturesI wait in my assigned place in the chainPatiently to ascend to my higher plane.A confusing woman is in the forumWaiting for twenty years to ascend.In her confusion are epiphanies hid-Dark mystery insights of the midnightWhen her birds land as mere words.In my human anxiety I truly want to beDeeply vegetarian with no sharp bladesThrust against my sleeping conscienceInto the vitals of a fellow living beingYet this is what I did, this night’s dreamThat left me wondering about sinningIf I kill in dream, will I go to a lower hell,Stopping my ascent up the being chain?
105EpiphaniesJanuary 17, 2011There is utter helplessness about the worldThe existing built world when I keep sayingPch , pch, not much can be done ,you know,My life is too short under the present sky;There are other skies, other spaces of times.My buildings shoot up steadily into a blue skyBut my clothes hang in the holes of balconiesTheir wet drops fall into masses of passers-by.Our epiphanies occur mostly in the fine gapsBetween the existing built world and this ‘me’If only they would allow me to build it anew.Thinking means wondering if can get the hell
106Out of these various hell-holes I have built;The holes can only be expanded, not blown away.Ha, ha, I now chuckle at the warm thoughtOf blowing away all my holes, one by one.It is a nice thought to blow away all the holes.But there is a bigger hole in this midnight logicBecause I cannot live under this open space.I am deeply afraid in the hole of my inner spaceAnd I need a five feet five canvas tent of a holeBetween my frame and the glimmering stars.
107The little dark oneJanuary 16, 2011At two this midnight the little dark oneBecame a poem, her all-knowing smileThe first stanza and her baby bird- glanceBecame the next one as she pranced thereOn the floor up and down like pendulumSwinging in the free air, a full fall of force,A pout of sarcasm from tiny baby lips.I at midnight wanted to round it offWith a cool third stanza, of epigramA last line well said, to the deep night.But she wouldn’t let me, the little oneThat squirmed in my hands like a wormFull of bones that pushed against mineIn my withered palms and finger bones.It is life which pushed against my death.As the night creeps I once again go intoMy epigrammatic mode of the old poetWith the bally irony thing barely broached.The curl on my lips that briefly occurredVanished without trace in my confusionAs my eye followed her moving in circles.I thought I had seen the curl on her lips.
108Bored poetJanuary 16, 2011The bored poet is not a sleep-deprived poetBut a wanting- to- create poet with the leavesYet to fall, and the golden autumn yet to arrive.A yawn or two at midnight is not pillow-sleepWhen warm musk thoughts steal from behind.Actually they have been there under the groundWaiting for the first rains to bring them to lifeA summer breeze from the warm mountainsWill surely quicken them in those fluffy cloudsTo bring to the dust to sprout light and green.The poet loses his amber sleep in the afternoonFiguring out when autumn ends, spring begins.
109Poems of the nightJanuary 13, 2011These poems appear at midnight with the shoutsOf fearsome Alsatians with their echoing barks,That emerge daily ,from lonely houses on the hillsLiving behind electrified fences of sleazy money.The barks come from their dark cavernous mouthsOf soft sorrow, born inside, of gratitude and love.The poems come from the sleeping mouths of furyFrom where emerges the silence of a sleeping cityWhose tautness will break at the first crack of dawn.
110PilgrimageJanuary 12, 2011Mother, what is now cooking, in your home?That once smelled of onion roast and fried potatoes?Where is the food you promised us the last time?You now talk of long distance yellow pilgrim busesThose will take you to the pristine hills of snowAnd the pearl-white temples nestling in them.The holy beads become weighty on your frail chest;Their mountain smells are truly overpowering.Up there shimmers a silver lake of frozen iceAnd pretty swans gracefully float as in a dream.There under the looming shadow of a white rockSits your three-eyed god who will dance destruction,When he will open his eyes from his deep thoughts.Mother, will you then cook lentils and rice for him?
111ColdJanuary 10, 2011Here, in the cold of the nose you are transmogrified:To become a little tranquil, like the sea in the morningWith a hidden possibility of rise to the moon at mid- night.The white surf is quiet, lacking evening ‘s orange passion.The hum in the ears is but an imitation of the dark night.But the sounds come to you like morning beach crowsLanding on their whooshing feet near the gentle wavesLooming largely as though they only exist in this worldAnd none other, on the sand-earth or in the sea-air.For example we ignore the existence of jumping fishOr crawling snails in the wet sand in and around holes.Or plastic fishnets in knotted heaps of red and blueOr strange old women selling sea-shells of rarest hue.Here these pills enter the swelling sea of my bloodTrying to negative the existence of those tiny creaturesThat feverishly ride their red waves in gusto, up and down.The sea is everywhere around our dear earth and in us.Its hum is persistent, breaking only when bigger soundsLand on the shores of our tranquillity like beach crows.
112TremblingJanuary 09, 2011First of all I don’t believe I trembleAt the thought of the dark night to come.My feet do not quake but shuffle in walk.There is sweat on brow and fear in my eyes.I don’t believe my trembling unbelief.
113PainJanuary 08, 2011When we were being borne our idea began.Our limbs slowly formed making us a tadpole,Then a blind creature swimming in the aqua.Our idea is just once, living in the presentLike the carriage wheel touching the earthOnly once in a brief vertiginous movement.Those limbs we grew have to go in the end.The gills shall disappear as vestiges of then.Somewhere in the middle we grew some fleshAs succor for new life, new love and beauty.But we remained just an idea, a brief momentA fleeting moment when beauty shall pass.All that will remain is mere flesh and its pain.“Strictly speaking, the life of a being lasts as long as an idea.Just as a rolling carriage wheel touches earth at only one point,so life lasts as long as a single idea”(Radhakrishnan, Indian Philosophy I, 373).(re-blogged from The Floating Library)(Hearing of the discovery of breast cancer of a friend’s wife)
114HousesJanuary 07, 2011Houses we think of, in sun and rain-Those houses which live, cheek by jowl,With maternal mango trees of summer.Their shadows paint their white canvas.In monsoon the houses are painted greenIn delicate taffeta of luminous moss.The squirrels climb the tree lookingCuriously into your bedroom window.
115HeightJanuary 05, 2011When your face is situated quite highYou look naturally down on the worldBecause that is where your eyes are and whereDramas are staged before sequined curtains.When you lie down on the ground with your eyesOn the infinity of the dark promontoryYou see tiny fish-worms swimming behind themAs if they were swimming in your own blood.It is these swimming creatures that will do you in.You remember, you were once one of them.
116Old ageJanuary 03, 2011Funny how we all begin in our old age.First we ignore it and then are afraid.The pain down there reduces us merely.Fairly farcical, our faces have lost allTheir humanity, angelic glow, at a time.These our pills are tiny white universes.They vanish darkly in that vast chaos.We laugh deeply in hollow inwardness-A toothless attempt at biting sarcasmWhenever the phone does not truly ringBut becomes a mere ringing possibilityUncomfortably vibrant for an old pocket.There is now not even pain there belowBut a dull ache in the lower mind and back.All our hellos trail off in the blue winter sky.
117Celebrating the New Year (2011)January 01, 2011Poetize we said, whatever prose there is.At twelve new night, little boy and girl jigIn bleary-eyed parental compulsion, proud.They keep up with Joneses on cup and cakeAs wine sparkles between uncles and aunts.Our little cherub dances his steps so cutely,We are proud of him in his English school.But there is tension everywhere, tensionOn the wall, elephants get up and chargeWith their tails tucked in their taut behindsAnd a poet appears from cloud and rain-Wet behind the ears, the poet who forgetsTo wear iambic pentameter in his under.Poetize, we said this morning to the treeIn the hills where village women trudgeTo work, with many-storied meal boxes.
1AuthenticityJuly 31, 2011I am often confronted by a feelingOf lack of authenticity, in this river,Of not feeling like a subject, spuriousAgainst mountains that sit in the farWith river waters beating on my ears.I am words from vaporous thoughts,A prose-poem thought in dark nooksOf the mind, mining word after word.The mountains belong to the earth.I, waving in breeze, am a mere babyA cry-baby in quick mountain wind,Flying words against its rock solidityIn its flowing wind and night silence.The mountains are authentic in spaceWith river about me, in daily ripples.They had come here much before meWith the waters from skies, daily sun.I exist here in the river, as a thoughtA passing thought of a real mountain,A thought in river, a temporary rock.
2Climate changeJuly 31, 2011We spoke all our recent dialogues nicelyVoicing apprehension of the big change.Our struggle had continued underneath.It was a monotone speech in a gray skyWhen the line of trees came to a freezeIn their hostility, where they stood tall.The gentle summer breeze did not matter.The trees sniffed autumn and looked away.Emaciated street dogs barked incessantly,At hooded strangers coming at us from hillsFrom the edge of the sky, in clouds of dust.Our dialogues went on in our dark robesAs our culture bristled riskily in our back,The culture of reality, in our failed heartsWhere several realities came up togetherNot as a single earth-reality in silk threadBut a failed reality of a fluid mind-stateA sky of treeless vapour, sea of flake-salt.
3MetaphorsJuly 30, 2011We are nowadays happy with our new doorA membrane bathroom door that now shedsA certain mauve hue on baths, while in song,With the shower flowering on our cool backsStreaming as if from a rock skirted by treesIts vapors swirling like their winter breaths.Our song is under breath, in some mutters.Our vapors are on glass that hides in smokeOur rather banal faces, their jejune laughter.We are, in fact, searching for our metaphors,Being upbeat about our recent turns of phrase.
4Phony visionJuly 29, 2011I do not know if the thing is phonyGlass-like, with glistening dew-dropsOf a morning vision on windshield,Pearl-glass that breaks in little coinsOn endless highways, on mild impactOf metallic bodies with drunk men.Some cars have steam on bonnetsLike bees, in spring, on the stone.Our vision is partly crowded, you seeWith birds hiding dust in the eastThat has turned orange at sunriseA phony vision, it is partly clouded.On the highway there are no housesOnly string cots for our dream sleepOn glasses of buttermilk, hot breads.We have whites on our mustachesOf too much buttermilk in throats.You crinkle eyes enough and you will seeWet buffaloes calmly chewing their cud
5In tin sheds that jump out of green fieldsTheir milk sloshing in their pink udders.Luckily their tail-flies and smells fly awayInto tree-tops, waking the morning birds,A phony vision indeed, partly clouded.The sunflower beds have darker kidsThat smile nicely of a little alphabet,Like flowers that turned deep inwardWhen the sun went behind the hills.Their little bees have nowhere to go,Wait; let the sun come from the hills.The village school is closed for todayIn honor of the guests on the string cotThe sunflowers will open with the windAnd the shadows will creep up slowlyBehind the buffaloes, with eyes closedTheir mandibles moving up and down.The vision is clouded, a phony visionCaused by much emotion in the eyes.
6ScreamJuly 28, 2011In the bone house it would appearThe lower mandibles were stretchingAnd stretching to produce a screamThat would fail to reach down to ears.Actually they were trying to bite sarcasm,Surely a futile endeavor, especiallyThey do not have tongues in cheeks.
7HolesJuly 27, 2011We are talking of holes, mere lack of matterSubsisting in matter and surrounded by itOf words that exist in crevices of thoughts,Words making the world’s holes in whole.My dead are matter in lack of it, globe-earthsThose spin in lack of space, in crisp night air.They spin in the space of time, holes in space,Phosphorus glow-worms roaming thin nights.They are holes in space, where they had lived.They are now words that will live in thoughts,Those remain in my mind, as images of realityTill I become a hole in space, a picture, a word.
8Children in the rainJuly 26, 2011We wanted clearly laid out pathsBetween thin strands of July rain.Our faces were drowned in hoodsAs the rain fell softly on our heads.Its sounds came as from the ocean.Our puny judgments took a beatingIn such a steady patter on our earsWhere they seem to be beating usLike angry fathers, back from office.As we walked we made tiny circlesIn rain water, under our umbrellasThat saved us from an angry sky.The houses were a blur in white.Our paths ended in green of trees.Rain-mud spattered on black coatsSurprised by blurs of passing cars,Their wipers saying no to the rain.We had left our school in the street.Our home of angry smoking fathers
9And soft grannies in loving egg-headsSeemed to vanish in the fuzzy rain.A scruffy dog shook its body of rain.Back at home, we bath our wet bodiesIn eucalyptus steam, as its vapors riseQuickly to drown the rain in its smell.
10BridgeJuly 25, 2011We had passed the bridge spanning a river of sandAt dawn, when our noisy train spoke to its emptiness.Once out of it, the train was bending like a centipedeAnd we took a long backward glance to see the bridgeNow smarting under noise injury on its deaf,deaf ears.The buffalos on its sand-bed looked up, unmindfulOf the bridge, of the noisy train that passed, and of usIn the train that saw them as mere globs on the sand.Their black bodies longed for green puddles of water.Their eyes seemed vacant, as their tails swished flies.We saw they had not even once met us in our eyes.
11The temple of shadowsJuly 24, 2011Men and women live here with stonesTheir shadows live with them in daylight.The shadow phalluses of shadowy godsLive in the musty smells of kings in silksTheir soldiers in attendance on swords.Women have their foreheads on red dots.Priests move throats up, down like birds.Their prayers fly like shadows to the sky,Their hungry stomachs touch their backsWhere they produce shrill incantations.Here god is crying inside, in the shadow.Beauty is hunger in distended stomachsDrunk with soft palm wine from the sky.
12SkinJuly 22, 2011Here my life began in a belly- fear of the darkIn a sky not visible, filled with fearful locustsThat comes in swarms, across the snow hills.The swarms eat up all our grasses in the way.But woman-insects begin life in the same way,Afraid of the dark in their own womb houses.I now swim in this my pool, where I had comeNot of my own, my dad being of different skin.When I come out of these waters into the sunMy skin shall wear all those paints in the sunSo it can please the leathery skins of dad’s classAnd I can build my own womb-house to hostA tiny swimming tadpole, with a swaggering tailThat shall never have belly-fears of the dark.But I only fear that my oxygen will be cut offBefore I open my eyes to the sun in the hills.(Female feticide is practiced in some parts of India due topreference for the male offspring, ostensibly to carry on the familylineage)
13Morning at the Tirumala templeJuly 22, 2011The morning starts cawing in its throat in sleepAnd the silky song of God’s morning shall waitFor worship flowers to come in the flower train.Flower trains are full of milk cans and turbansAnd women in colorful costumes smelling milk.The pigtailed high-rise throats shall begin nowIn god’s praises, he bleary-eyed from late night’sJumping across the night to wife’s house below.The shepherd is tending sheep of yesterday evening.The morning shall begin when the clouds move awayAnd stop threatening the shepherd with cloud-rain.In the meantime of morning, let rolling people rollLike waves in the midnight ocean, their wet bodiesMaking silent noises against the stones of the temple.
14A semblanceJuly 21, 2011I have decided not to call on her in his deathIn order to create a mere semblance of as was.My ghost would continue to exist in this far,As a mere shadow of a reality, just a figmentThat would create a flimsy semblance of fact.His death is now, for her, a mere semantic fact.Let the existence of my body be a semantic fact,Just like his lack of body in her drawing room,Till my lack of body is a similar semantic fact.
15FactsJuly 20, 2011These facts do not really speak for themselvesIn the cloud cover of this weather, on a rainy nightWhose dome still stifles us beyond mortal breath,While pursing our lips, brooding in blue thoughtSpeaking musty history words, empty hypotheses.They do not hold in the crisp air of night dreams.Truth is our viscous reality in the lower abdomen,An open space where the breeze blows regardless.Beauty is a reality that lay beyond the body’s crooksIn a niche where it all adds up under a petrified bone.
16LayersJuly 19, 2011As we had opened eyes we saw ourselvesIn the mirror, profoundly struck by the nightOur faces serrated by layers of collected time.The holes there carried lightless rain waterThat went green in the lazy years of old fish,Tadpoles that, by morning, turn green frogsIf only allowed their photosynthesis by day.We then peeled our white faces layer by layer.Our war paints then came off and snow cream,The layers that revealed our first fears and godsAnd our demons that shrieked through the day,To be liberated from the good wishes of gods,And placentas of unborn kids that had carriedBorn sins of our fathers in their ugly plasticity.We saw the serrated sands of the Thar desertThat had cumulated over the oceans drowningThe fish, the tadpoles, the frogs and the oysterAnd all other aquatic creatures under its silica.We saw nights piling on nights, years and agesThe grass that covered our millennia in layersOn broken walls of our cities, the moss growingSilently on the trees, the hills covered in mistTheir peaks entirely covered in forgetful snow.
18The parcelJuly 18, 2011I had received a white parcel in my dreamYesterday from the bank at the street-cornerWhere my address was intact in ledger foliosAs a man in swivel chair, gold name on door.It will be delivered at home, when I am awake.They have to know their customer, you know.I have to know my balcony from where I lookWhen the man’s bicycle bell rings from below.My balcony has no number, in wind and rain.These days my name on the door is too faint.
19Goats for goddessJuly 17, 2011We looked at our goddess closely in the mind.She was much in our step, on way up the hill.There were no snakes, no crowned peacocksWith tails that danced oncoming rain-clouds.We only looked for our yellow-faced goddessThat stood in stone niches in the ancient hills.We tied flags of red cloth towards loving motherAround gnarled trees , for our women’s fertility.When cholera struck our village we had soughtHer help in her stone temple of exquisite beauty.On this festival day we seek her maternal blessingAs we take pots of food to her on women’s headsDancing our way to her heart in crowded streets.We wish our goats to join festivities, when alive.
20ArgumentsJuly 16, 2011The sky is dull gray, with rows of v-birdsStitched on it in round silken embroidery.Mountains sit there prettily, with a lone treeThat stood at the curve, bending in the sky.The arguments went on a bit tediouslyIn a boring persistence by some guests.Their chairs are now warm with victoryThis side of the table as the papers rustle.Their news emitted in the room to the roofReturning slowly to the other side of legs.On their laps are napkins wet with lips.The arguments wear thin like mouth-spit.Outside, the tree stood bare and naked.Frogs argued with the bog interminably.The tea ceremony has started in our eyes.The sky is still dull gray with three rowsOf v-birds dotting its embroidered clothTheir wings stopped flapping long ago.
21ShapesJuly 15, 2011Newspapers jut out from spaces, their wordsHaranguing at noon, awaiting sleep in our eyesOn stomachs well-fed, cutting the day in two.The first part of the day is stored away, at noon.Some words loosely fall away in the daylight.The day soon changes to a misshapen eveningAwaiting its night, beyond light, of a black sleep.The night will be round in shape, curtains drawn.My train will lose its shape in a curve of its line.The line will lose shape as the train cuts it in twoBecoming two lines, two shapes, two phone lines.The birds on the phone lines will go up and downLosing shapes, every now and then, triangularly.The world will lose its shape, in the dark of sleep.
22CirclesJuly 14, 2011We have come down to the earth, concentricallyIn our circles, ever decreasing, blazing in space.The circumference is always in view from centerBut the promontory remained outside our graspWith little dots that flickered unmindful of us.When we made circles we would run in themIn ontology, our circles shrinking progressivelyIn spherical perfection, their penciled geometryImplemented on our puzzled feet, never too farFrom the centre like the cow grazing in its tether.
23RitesJuly 13, 2011Among our thoughts are rites, following wordsPrescribed by pigtailed pundits of yore, talking,In the bombastic language of our ancient godsTo airy spirits who had bodies in the olden days.They understood us mostly in difficult language.As words went, our hands went, our eyes wentOur tongues moved, our bodies stirred slowly.Our thoughts remained on the dead, as if dying.We stared at the sky in its lifeless continuumAnd we took water to lips, thrice, thinking of herAmong the ones who once had bodies like us.
24The silenceJuly 12, 2011The silence strikes again like faint flint sparks,That do not readily open up in fires of dry sticksOf our old men, behind deer running for arrowsFrom caves of early pictures, with a blazing sunIn the day and a moon at night, in liquid silence.The silence of rain falls on the night, on cricketsIn corners of homes, along with silent brooms,Brooms that will play song with the road at dawnOf women whose eyes are limpid pools of silence.The silence of words strikes, their images silentIn their fury, passions of a deep night, like wavesThat broke on lonely beaches with sleeping gulls,The silence of death on eyes closed, on seeing .
25CollageJuly 12, 2011In our beginning there was this whole thingOf a face which loomed large, a large houseBefore everything happened, an empty airBlowing it inside out, in a comically funny act.The absurdity was our serious thing of heartThe body was ludicrous imitation of an ideaA funny caricature of living, a slowly dying act.The images were wholes, just shattered soundsAnd mere smells that struck an upturned noseIn a mind-state that absorbed the largely funny.The critical mind dissected holes in wholesAs desiccated bodies that lay on green tables.The naked blue bodies that lay on the floorStared at the ceiling fan, in a final love actOf science and poverty, among other funnyImages of bodies, not yet blue, not yet naked.The grotesque faces then came laughing at youWithout their torsos, in a view of the big pictureWhen you saw funny patches of hairless headsControlling the world, others in tiny fragmentsTheir bodies quickly vanishing in vote machines.But fragments do not make sense, a collage may.
26FlamingosJuly 10, 2011What came to me was an ornament, mere.Its functionality extremely suspect in eyesA high role in its augustness, silk-borderedAnd flamingo-like from the distant swamps,Little specs of whiteness, flying in the blueFlamingos that have no use for me, in bread.There was a light tree in the middle of the road.Our memory spoke of a cherubic kid on its crookAnd grandmother holding him aloft in the air.Memories are flamingos, of no use in bread.Kid is no kid, now a larger pain in his big backAnd in our backs, laden with the silver of hair.Our memories are ornaments like flamingosThose have gone back to their Siberian plainsThey have roosted and gone, vanished in blueThe whites now in the blue are new flamingos.
27PiecesJuly 10, 2011The morning went into many piecesA cuckoo’s call to rain, rain to come,Thinking of new ways to neighbor areaWalking on mud to explore fresh skiesIn visible light of yet-to poetry, photo.A fan in room had a touch of the coldThe cold death of the tree that has been,The sky spaces between the other treesWhere birds will speak in parliament.In the streets are footfalls of men’s walkA distant sing-song of morning to godAnd flowers smelling from felled creepers.The lake that cried in our filthy watersTo the machine that silently cleaned it.Beyond the lake are its borders of flatsWhere people sleep in lake mosquitoesThose have their history mixed with us.In the meantime women sweep streetsTheir broom-sounds assailing our earsIn the liquid treatment of dusty roads.Their husbands have froth at mouths.Their kids get up bleary eyed for school.
29StubJuly 09, 2011I see this stub, a broken thing from wind.A vertical thing, rising to the sky, de-frockedSprawls on the earth, its mourning motherStaring at the sky, above the electric wires.Children dance on its body, in school uniformThey have learned how to dance on short stubsIn the school of lunch boxes, topied teachersWith horn-rimmed spectacles on their noses.The trailer comes spluttering, this organic one,Separating windy things from inorganic stuff,The leaf from the wood and pick up living matterTo grow new living matter, in large windy spaces.The stub remains in wind, still embracing mother.
30The internetJuly 08, 2011The internet is a not a thingy but just mental stuff,A few electric charges firing up from so many spacesIn assembly of plastic boxes and optic wires runningUnder sea, reaching our houses here via our balconies,Where we hang our wet clothes like many-colored flagsQuietly announcing our identity near so and so tree.Simply, it is a skull-thing linked to several skullsFrom other places, other holes in air, their balconies.In the internet we speak to the vast oceans of peopleThose have no faces worth their names, their fathers.They move in waves, hair on brow, tails yet hanging.Their words are early promises, forgot by dusk timeIn an after-glow of pretty rhetoric and purple prose.
31RealityJuly 07, 2011He woke from sleep in order to experience reality,Waking being a reality when in a fluid state of sleepAcknowledging sleep had been a greater reality,Immanence in body, a severe presence in mind.He had to listen to the whistle of the night guardThe bark of a hoarse dog, in its throat of hill echoAs if on the edge of the hills calling down the skyThe stars having come to doze in nightly flickers.Reality begins as solidity, continuing its descentTo the fluid and thence to vapor and empty proofOf an existential fact, a shriek from night cricket.The phosphorous of our bones roams in the skyAs night lights in the vastness of a cold desert.
32KnotsJuly 06, 2011A tiny insect is now taking a tour on my mouse pad.A machine whir heard in its wings’ flapping soundEnters my conscious in the yellow light, in morningSounds of the gray sky outside, its rain yet in pouring.My thoughts overflow my ears, along ropes that knotIn the middle of the air, in the blue spaces of sounds.These are silver ropes that glisten in the day’s sun.I have to pay their price in my family silver, my love.
33NowJuly 05, 2011Your clothes balloon in the increasing wind.The brown hills look bloated with spring windAnd now is merely in your future and my pastAs my eyes drift past the hills into a blue sky.A sky bird swoops upon the grass, on deathLike the swirling plane that crashed on roofsIn yesterday’s dream and today’s newspaper.The bird is in the now, in ballooning clothesWith the wind that brought it down in circlesTo death in its putrefying smells on the earth.Your silken clothes balloon in a gust of wind.You look bigger in flowers and fragrant loveLike butterflies in a fragmentariness of nowIn refusal to meet with past, its smelly deathAnd set on fly-wings of future in a sky of now.
34The hall of mirrorsJuly 05, 2011Our faces appear funny in mirrors, looking clumsy,Bursting quickly into loud laughter without humor.On our way up, we hold our rusted banisters looselyStooping, with a hand on our hips, as if in a dance.Here we have laughed, in hollow sounds, in spacesBelow the stairs, full of dust and in obscure cornersFilled with our dead skin cells and our stale memoriesThose have remained on the attic in our long historyIn cloth bundles that shrink like our faces in mirrors.Their knots on top stick out like pigtails on our facesWhen, at night, they enlarge in grotesque convexity.
35Children in the afternoonJuly 04, 2011We played seven stones game, piled one on anotherToppling them with ball that would fly into bushes.The lazy afternoon heat beat on our sleeping trees.The birds had gone on to their own afternoon sleep.We entered the scrunching leaves sending the lizardScurrying to the hole of its wall, its triangular headPopping out a while to hear our tiny feet in the leaves.Up on the mound we deeply looked into a dark holeTo look for the slithering sound of the resident snakeWe would then run down fast, afraid of its unheard hissAnd fall to the ground with coins of kneecaps bleeding.We then climbed the guava tree to its highest branch.We caught the squirrel eating the fruit of our ripeness.In the evening we played badminton with the marigoldSmelling yellow petal shreds as they spread in the sky.
36The messengerJuly 03, 2011Here I am stuck with the thought of a messengerSans his message, my life’s meaning, sent to meAlone in this desert, by the mighty China emperorFrom the royal hall, written into unhearing ears,By a dying emperor on his imperial death-bed.The messenger had a rising eastern sun on chestWhere froze the possibility of his ever reaching meAcross the vast people in the expanding hallways.There is no writer between the emperor and himOnly deaf ears and the quivering lips of a dead manI know the message is oncoming in the vast lands.Here in this window, I feel the wind in my bones.I smell the smell of a silky scroll as it softly opensAnd I can dream its contents as the evening comes.(Reading A message from the emperor by Franz Kafka)
37The day’s truthJuly 03, 2011The truth seemed in the half-eaten guava of the parrotsThat flew away with their happy truth cracked halfwayTheir colors were not the truth, but their trifling facts,Their petite nothingness, in the tree, they ran away fromThe waffle of their living reality in the tree they flew to.The fragrant guava that fell on the wet ground bleedingFormed the truth connected to the waving of coconutsAnd the rain that came from the other world on its cloudsBearing facts of the other time, other space in its dropletsThe night they had embraced ,in its amorphous darknessWhen the stars refused to come out yet in their deep sleep.The truth was the middling reality of a cobbler’s broken lifeIn a leather bag he stitched in clumsy seams on a daydream,The cussedness of a sitting reality on the road of shuffling feet.The yellow and red bags, like green parrots, were his truthHalf –cracked in the afternoon sun ,waiting for his duskWhen all truth shall lie buried properly in drunken stupor.The truth was the broken reality of the six ‘o clock trainThat had disgorged people like ants, from holes in its wallTheir truth lay in the broken lives that would come to nightFrom the aggregates of other people’s broken lives of the dayTheir truth lay half-cracked , in the train they just left behindClimbing flyover steps to home truths of mamas and wives.
39The temple godJuly 02, 2011It has rained behind the tree and the evening sun comesIntermittently in waves of laughter from clouds, splittingThe vitreous evening sky into inconsistent blue and orange.The light from our bodies crosses its threshold rebelliouslyIn a lightning of the world, like a click of the flash camera.All that we required was a god safe in his temple laughingAt our fables, at our immature art in the shadows of lightWhen we fail to create life, flesh natural, bones breaking,The pure immanence of life, its glory on the lonely nightAnd then we are answerable to none in our question hours.Quietly we cease to exist, with no words trailing behind us.As if we are stones of several insects breathing under us.Like him in the temple we wish to laugh anonymously.
40Morning in BegumpetJuly 02, 2011Behind the coconuts the trainArrives with a night’s memoriesHidden in its noisy under-belly.The clouds have come and gone.That seems another rainless day.The flies, expectant of fresh rain,Actively seek the night’s refuse.The first train is heard in arrivalIn a monotone of announcement.The wind rustles in the coconutsQuietly dropping a baby coconuton the roof with a crashing thud .Train commuters, fresh from nights,Descend station steps in a dream.
41The idiotJuly 01, 2011A girl makes you the idiot you are , againstThe stone-pelting of children who will love youOn your grave, their flowers sprinkled as if rainYou are the bright idiot weighed down by loveA diamond pin you will sell for a little outcaste girlWho loved you in delicate hanging of five minutesOn a scaffold of death, the priest of a crucifixWho will say absolutely nothing for your ChristLife comes to the idiot in fits, paroxysms of joy.(Reading The Idiot by Dostoevsky)
42SecretJune 30, 2011We share our secret with the dead in their yellow leaves.We feel it softly touching our bones in the deep lightOf the shopping mall where we go to pick up beamsOf light that need to be colourfully knitted in our ownShadows at home, the ones we buried under our walls.In the urban glass-palaces we feel it in our vacant eyes,In our ears, when it touches their drums beating themTo bring out their fine city music, in its singular rhythm.It is in the fever of its wood and glass, in its electric frost.
43GlassJune 29, 2011Now I think of the crash of the body, its broken splintersShining in the afternoon rain, like tiny mirrors for clouds.I think of birds that are glass pieces embedded in the wallThose were once airy souls living in bodies of glassy flesh.I think of fistfuls of birds that beat like mad in glass chestsTheir pace-makers, working overtime in solid plate glass.
44ListJune 29, 2011Let us list things of that evening when the dusk lightFlooded, through the tree, this wiry man and his womanAs they were winnowing for the day, sifting wheat of goldFrom its powdered chaff, against a light-powered windIn a muscular swing of the male arm, an upturned faceTheir bodies synchronized in an exquisite wheat-danceAs happiness lay somewhere in this jumble, in this list.
45ScribblesJune 28, 2011Between then and now is a mere scribble lostInto an indifferent writing, by a little fingerOn the night of time, some sand sculpturesOn beach of ephemeral gods, lost in waves,Some writings on waters, with wind on backAgainst waves that break only to be countedAs fuzzy surf that will vanish in rising people.A scribble in the sun that would vanish soonIn vapors of white clouds, above the blue hillsInto flying white birds that drop their whitesIn calling fingers, fists raised, noses upturned.A scribble on the slate of learning in our villageBehind shuffling buffalo feet, in udders of milkOn the silky brown sands of summer-hot riversStaring at the far hills emptied of their green.Between now and then is a mere scribble lostOn faces in pony-tails, in tiny brick-red flowersWedged in hair, that jostled with white fragrancesOn evanescent blouses, on backs smiling directlyTo celebrating trees that shed many a tear of joy
46In yellow leaves, on their own circles of shadows.
47Ghosts in our sleepJune 27, 2011These ghosts make you deeply afraid on the pillow.Their torsos are human-like but bottoms taper offLike the blurbs they speak into, in cartoon stories.Our childhood ghosts are now dead in their treesBut new ones from cinema pop up, in wind and rain,Under doors, in their creaky hinges, now and then.Our ghosts these days do not have tapering bodiesTheir bodies do not now laugh in tiled mortuariesIn the outskirts of town, where they cut up bodiesNor live in tamarinds in shrieking street-cornersWhere suicide ghosts once lived with their families.They sleep quietly under our skull-plates till midnightWhen they come out in moonlight for a ghost-dance.
48Free will, free fallJune 27, 2011I land on my free will this eventful nightLike the cat that lands softly on its rubber feetBefore getting up to pick fight with anotherScreaming cat in the dark, as the night swells.Here I am doing things, falling on my ownWith no other sons of mothers in betweenStopping my free fall, so I nicely land on feet.I get up and shake the dust off my clothes.I some times land on my two feet for nothingAnd the prospects of bound legs loom large.I am no feral cat from brooding jungle treesJust a hospital cat with high- slung legs in air.Free fall is not free, merely gravity-bound.Actually there is nothing free in rarefied airOnly a crashing fall that comes entirely free.We are bound to act according to free will.
49IdentityJune 26, 2011In the evening some identity questions popped upIn the tinkle of a few china cups of rising tea steamAnd stainless steel spoons of sugar in place of cubesBrought in by two whitely dressed men from Kolkata.Themselves plagued by identity in their white dressThey inverted bed ,took out your air in the broadsheet.Their fathers have their unending tales to unwindTheir wind fresh from the marshes of SunderbansWhere tiger tails deftly elude experienced hunters.Their uncles are government clerks in frayed red filesTheir brother’s wives doting mothers of soft loveWith saree over heads, of wholly hidden identities.There are others in the room that do not have facesThe ones that seem to speak out in clanking soundsFrom the corners, their spanners at work on the wallThey may be spiders who have just woven their webThey will climb the wall, their shadows on the roofOver the electric fan coaxing it to whir in its shadow.The taxi man to here was a communist with dreamsHis son painted slogans and politicians that staredFrom stately billboards rising above electric wires.A communist has no identity apart from the stateThe state just stares in empty space from its heights.
51The beggarsJune 24, 2011These beggars tug at your sleeve, smelling your moneyIn thin sheets of small paper, lying in your leather walletsWith decisions about their life, marriage and God inside.Their thoughts mainly look into a sitting plastic tumblerOf loose change, where water should have flowed smoothly.They dream of scraps of music, sung in trains, with breezeThat came in and went out, through a whir of train fansAnd a sad song could easily flow to a single wire of music.Outside the temple their cloth spreads like the night skyAnd the coins glisten in it, like stars on a moonless nightLying loosely with decisions about life, women and God.
52TautologiesJune 23, 2011The world eludes, sleep to sleep, in the deep night.Cobra-snakes writhe and flying planes from the skyCome crashing on house-roofs, the logical consistencyOf images in serious doubt, their semantic context.Flowers open in pearl-white, their petals unfold,To golden sunlight from the hills, to water mirrorsIn early morning lotus fragrance from the pond.Women in colour return with plastic vessels of waters.The lotus stems in knots writhe like green snakes.Here the pillow turns upside down, its rectangle of restChanging its sides, scraping the ears, ruffling your hair.The mosquito buzzes night’s happy mosquito songEnters the cave of your ear, restless on a thinking pillowThe rectangle of rest, outlying on a square of the night.Our cobra-snakes are a tautology and our flying planes.Luckily the women images are not of widow women.Our dreams continue, sleep to sleep, in repeat imagesTheir underlying vocabulary many times tautological.
53RoomJune 23, 2011(Everyone carries a room about inside him. This fact can even beproved by means of the sense of hearing. If someone walks fastand one pricks up one’s ears and listens, say in the night, wheneverything round about is quiet, one hears, for instance, the rattlingof a mirror not quite firmly fastened to the wall.- Kafka)Everyone has a room he carries about him, within himSurveyed vigorously, some times, by a friendly night insectOn its white wall, a tiny friend from an unfathomed nightThat makes wing noises of friendship in a proposed deathOn the wall, its carcass to be untraceable under our cot.We then carry our room with us, about us, into the balconyFor a free fall from the heights of vertigo into darkness.Everyone has this room in him and he carries it about him.Its whirring electric fan noises keep him from actively dyingIn the pool of darkness, in the vastness of night’s anonymity.We only die in others’ rooms, like the friendly night insect,That had come to die, in its immensity, on our white wall.
54The girl’s songJune 22, 2011Her song begins abruptly, being born and raisedIn a forest of words that has not seen the blue sky.Her lyrics are stewed in myth and grandma’s talesWhere fish remain to dry for ever and they are sevenAnd seven of king’s sons brought them hunting.It is all in an icy tingle of magic words, ice cubesOf music- notes on the soft downy back of a girlSlipping through the unreal magic of girl-thoughtAnd now she is slowly riding on your back with hairFlowing in an autumn wind of ripe fruitfulness.Her song trails off just like her girl’s abrupt bodyThat has floated into the room in a bottomless danceHer feet vanishing into the mosaic floor in its mistHer body’s contours merging in the morning sun.
55The grandmother’s narrativesJune 21, 2011Sitting luxuriously on a string cot in the moonA lovely grandmother spoke her long narrativesTo the little ones at her feet, as a soft liquid nightTouched their baby cheeks through many holesIn the moonlight that fell on the coconut’s head.The night bristled with unanswered questionsBut that will be for later and in the meantimeThe ghosts cannot wait in the washer-man’s ghatThat had clay pots seething with village laundryAnd the black stone on which he had beat clothesWas in fact a ghost by night, living in the palm .There were of course kings who had seven sonsAnd all of them went hunting and brought backSeven wet fishes that refused to dry in the sunA probe revealed the tiny red ant to be the culprit.The narratives went on till the night owl’s hoot.The herons settled down in the tree’s darknessBut their wings fluttered intermittently in sleep.
56The metrical memorandaJune 21, 2011In meter and music we make our many memoranda.Our language is orchestrated, as in the green housesWaiting to accumulate green air, as they quietly grow.Our language is after-thought, mere shadow of reality.In enclosed space we enact shadow-plays, on cave wallsLike Plato’s prisoners in the cave, confusing shadowsWith their reality, to imbue souls with aimless vapor.Our memoranda, like our words, are airy pretty-nothings,Mere echoes like the cuckoo-calls that do not bring rainBut just document the existence of the bird on the branch.
57Ear painJune 20, 2011Ear pain comes out of too much thoughtWhen thought contradicts logic in a mazeOf words that strike you as so many mothsFrom the rain seeking light in your patio.The doctor of the ears sees too much in nose.His obiter dictum says the nose, in its septum,Is deviated from its straight, primrose path.He is a doctor with a sharp nose for money.So if you have too much ear pain in the drumThe nose is corrected from running astray.The tooth doctor sees fault with the gums.He will try to get to the root of their canalsAnd both your ears will be made to behave.Surely money lies at the root of the canals.Actually ear pain comes of too little thoughtAnd far too many words striking eardrumsFired, at once, in excess parental enthusiasm.
59Snakes and planesJune 20, 2011We dream of snakes that hold top gods in their coilsAnd the ones they stand on in green ponds spewing fire.We love them all in our eye- sleep and white daylight.Snakes and planes, coiling and flying, green and blueHappen in libidinous dreams, in wet life and dry death.Our bearded professor called them from our inside,The dark cave where they all arose in their angry hoodsAnd the planes, all of them, fly about houses helplesslyIn three sorties, looking at us from their window-holesOnly to crash on our pitiful houses of mud and earth.Some times we catch our snakes by tails in the planeAnd whir them in the air in childish triumph of powerAnd the planes will go away catching their breath againThese incidents are few and far between in our sleep.
60The ceremonyJune 18, 2011We all went into a tedious little ceremonyOf lost innocence, in our rainbows of wisdom.A man issued his words that touched soulsAnd softly spoken in the smells of turmericAnd a faint fragrance of innocence and flame.His words flowed from his soft liquid eyesAs though he was child entering knowledgeWild-eyed and with tiny bits of the blue skyThe earth having lost its contours in spaceWater and fire emerging in a litany of words.It was a child who sat in his lap, with fingersIn a bed of rice grains that filled stomachsAs though it was food that fuelled wisdom.He wrote his first letters as if in a secret codeTo the treasure-trove of burning treasuresSearing to the eye, hot on the painted browA certain secret gold thread on the little chestThat qualified him for the arduous journey.He then gurgled first letters, word and song.(The initiation ceremony of a child’s first learning in which theGoddess of learning bestows her blessings on the child before his
62The horizonJune 17, 2011The train passes in the station without stopping.Its hanging men in blue cloth are a mere blotch.The woman talking on cell phone is now horizon.The horizon that had shifted this side a while agoIs back to the wall behind train with cinema postersOf a hairy- chested actor lying sprawled on boobsNot his, of a buxom heroine of dreamy shut eyes.The train comes again and stands, emptying people.The horizon is now bursting with people in colorTheir dresses hang out as a rainbow of many hues.(Looking at the Begumpet Railway Station from my roof)
63Making senseJune 17, 2011We try to stitch together desultory fragmentsOf what have happened, on the tongue of nowAnd find a common thread with what existedIn the airy minds of then of us and those othersAs if there is salivary consistency about them,A continuum of space in their holding togetherWhere time and space hold hands in bodies.We try to make sense out of our mere being,Out of the sound of words and their ceremonies,Symbols that hold race memories like crucibles.We try to build corridors in the spaces of time.We then destroy bodies to make sense of it all.
64On the night of the lunar eclipseJune 16, 2011You have two faces, city, like JanusOne on either side of the rail trackThe incoming train divides you in twoThe rain-breeze soothing your sorrow.But the smells of morning milk packetsAnd the buffaloes waiting to be milkedOn either face speak the same story.The city’s sorrow began in the nightWhen the moon hid in earth’s shadowFor no fault of the moon or the sunBut our own, of our own green earthIn our midnight wakefulness to cloudsAfter an evening of togetherness in mealDisturbed by a threatening wet rain.
65My motherJune 15, 2011I have now managed to fix my mother in soft silksAnd brocades of years ago, that smelled of mothballsThere was nothing else in me to slot her absence withIn the recesses of my own history in the mind’s foldsExcept a pallid figure, in pieces of bones and ashesIn a clay-pot in waters that came from the snow hills,Yellow marigolds and fickle flames floating on watersA clay-pot that had overturned to the bottom of a boatIn a watery sound that came as if from my drowning.It was now the rustling silks of her wedding, a clarinetOf silky tunes that flowed sweetly in jasmines and scents.These now prevailed in my thoughts of her long absence.It did not matter I had not been present in her wedding.
66PassagesJune 14, 2011I hear these passages in my waking momentsOf clicking shoes, hands on banisters, shadowsOn infinitely white walls stained with lizardsThat seemed to know me so well all the timeThe way they wave their heads up and down.I have my eyes to look up to a hole of hot sky.Some times the rain is very angry in the stairsLike the cat that purred under the dusty stairsTensing for the roaches from the kitchen sink.Here I am and now taut with the sounds of fearFrom the falls of cockroaches that defy deathNot the scary ghost-creaks of old house-doorsBut doors that are never there but mere holesWhere the wind hisses angrily as in a hill bush.I dread these very passages and this very page.
67FramesJune 13, 2011My frame is ephemeral, just an illusory screenThat existed for a mere eye-blink on the roadLike a miasma that shimmered in afternoon,As I walked past with my eyes set on the road.The mountains there rose above human headsThat talked in phones to other human heads,Heads of hair with things to do, trivial events,Politics that provoked the laughter of historyOf humankind, in sheets of crackling leavesThey made out of palm and bamboo of jungle,In movie- tales, smelling of money and powerThat bought the comfort of tomorrow’s love.My frame is ephemeral that brought it all togetherInto a single world, a coconut, its shimmering lake,And the shadows of mountains, boats overflowingWith men in tucked lungis that harvested hyacinthThe silent paddle-sounds in a lagoon, smug birdsThat sat cool on wooden poles in murky watersA white girl who chased the whiteness of a rabbit.My frame is ephemeral that brought it all togetherThe tree in the temple that arched over its pagodaIn clouds that floated above the sun-gold of its top
68A shirtless man who hung in the sky to fly His flagThe amorous couple who made love on the stoneThe Gods of wood who looked with lidless eyesAt various follies done in the dark of our souls.My frames are ephemeral, just fog-screens of beautyThat fizzled down between dreams and wakefulness.
69HandsJune 13, 2011We dance with both hands and grab space rapaciously.At the same time we kick space sideways into the dust;Our hands are supple fingers with sound tales to tellAnd fine colors to mix on white surfaces of silk finish.With our fingers we claw our way into blue sky space.We love our earth-space, brown and oozing with love.We love our earth and we dig it up and make scars on itAnd whomever we love we destroy them in quiet hours.We love women with our hands clawing into their bodies.Our hands are fingers that make music from their bodiesBut our fingers tear up their bodies leaving scars on them.We make surreal paintings of their scars for art auctions.
70DanceJune 11, 2011She was her mom in fullness of danceA color complement to her in spaceIn wind and rainbow hues like thoseOne would imagine in grease-bubblesOn a rainy evening at the gas station.Ephemeral are her steps that flowedExactly as daughter’s, viscerally flowing,The same way as her mom’s, to facesAs lines of rain slanting to our faces inClosed eyes and sticking-out tongues.Together they poked our innocent eyesIn the middle of space where inertia restsOur hair flowed upwards as if Shiva’s.(About the Kuchipudi dance performance of a mother-daughterpair ,Vijayanti and Prateeksha Kashi I had witnessed in Bhopalsome time ago)
71The bearded painterJune 11, 2011It seems his bird went away in the early hours.The Goddess he had made naked with his beardQuickly got up and went her way to her Creator,Leaving sophisticated critics with a memory holeAnd with nothing that they could stop to conquer.He is now laughing behind his enormous beard.He would no more paint all those pretty picturesIn pastels for society women of perfumed leisure.But the hole he made in art-space is a lasting oneAs white in the dark night of oblivion as his beard.(A tribute to the memory of M.F.Hussain, India’s famous painterwho recently passed away in London at 95)
72WalkingJune 11, 2011The waters walked slowly, from the red mountainsEntering the parched plains, with wind on their backs.Their forked snake tongues proceeded smoothly,Exploring, gently patting short grasses on their headsAnd feeling for living creatures, their thingy existencesUnder the sky and on the earth, brown with the sun.The mountains bled with muddy water in their heartsAnd renewed the lives of our rivers for one more year.
73StrangersJune 09, 2011I find my strangers are perfect almost alwaysWhen one would meet them on the road at dusk.They become perfect strangers, perfect in wordsPicture perfect in white shirt and student tie.As their words issue ,strangely they are perfectLike the stranger I saw yesterday assaultingMy space with words about a certain collegeIts location on a road at right angles with mine.My words strangely collided with him in street.His words were strangely at perfect right anglesWith my old man’s life which was in a rectangleOf a closed space of vegetables and evening rain.When I intersect their brief spaces on a busy roadThe text is always empty but the templates remainAnd they become perfect strangers to memory.
74SorrowJune 09, 2011One tends to culture a veil of sorrow in bodyOn a cloudy day, as one would, in sericulture,Where boiling cocoons are cultured painfullyFor drape as filaments in weddings and regalia.Garbage bells here keep chiming in with sorrowOn a trailer, to which watchmen from basementsAdd their sorrows, one by one ,in fetid garbage.The silk that comes out of it is soft and smooth,Happy to touch but smells awful to a deep nose.On a cloudy day mankind turns deliberately sadUnder a mournful banyan, sitting cross-leggedTo avoid the much deeper sadness of ancestorsWho stood on one leg in the hills for soul-freedom.
75HumorJune 08, 2011We remained alive to humor possibilitiesAs we gurgled toothlessly in the cloth cradle.Later when we would piss in our half-pantsWe felt wet and were rather pissed off at lifeLooking for dry answers to wet questions.But we learnt to look at non-existence of pantsOn others’ bottoms to have a booming laugh.Our humor was black like night, at night.At times we looked at a mental possibilityOf separating real pants from wet bottomsFor their dark potential for night humor.Now, back in diapers, we are wet in bottoms.Our humor is smelly, our jokes are not funny.Our words now come with tongues held in cheek,As our eyes go blank, brows grotesquely knit.
76Home-sicknessJune 07, 2011Now, as we lean on the parapet in rainWe become home-sick, way beyond the lineWhere the pipal tree meets the blue sky.The tree’s hushed whispers at midnightIn windy rain will catch us in the stomachLike dad who once slept on the verandaWith his night growls of half-rememberedWisps of dreams about his children playingOn the memory wall of a winter sunset.We become home-sick of him of years ago.
77StonesJune 06, 2011We were surrounded by stones, in steep steps,And taken by surprise, in their sun hues and skyClimbing the sky like birds to the sun in clouds,White fluffy clouds that came from somewhereFrom beyond the west hills, for just a day’s rain.Rain spoiled them, blurring outlines luxuriouslyTo make them glisten like silks, finery of wedding.Bush and tree towered over them stifling their soulsAs they sat cowering in dread of their aliveness.We were two, me and shadow, against their many.Beyond the bush and fire, a black- ash stubbleShone on stones covered in last year’s dry grass.
78FishJune 05, 2011In the fish spa you have your foot nicely eatenBy schools of fish, in the blue aqua- transparencyOf the tiny creatures swimming around your feet.For a change they eat you instead of you them.In the fish eyes your foot is the whole of a whale,A foodstuff of alive -stomach filling dead cells.They tickle your under-feet to make them laugh.You have a foretaste of the spa of the maggots.
79MonologueJune 04, 2011Monologue is a threat to sleeping innocence,A revival of lost innocence like the cruel AprilBreeding lilacs out of inherently dead landRe-mixing memory and love of pretty words.You threaten the world all the time in lips.The world cringes before their pouted wordsAs if Mount Etna will explode in orange fireAnd the expectant sky rumbles it right now.Little birds speak about it from night treesTheir monologue remains a nocturnal wail.Monologue comes in white froth at the mouthWhen a frail body speaks black words of deathFrom a deep sigh, a rounded end of the word.
80TelevisionJune 04, 2011Sleep flows softly with the sun, eyes half-shutWith thin fragments of dreams under the lids.Weary- and bleary-eyed, I look at the solid worldOf furniture wood and wall television for spaceFor a release of wall space from concrete pillarsInto the air like tiny birds flapping their wingsOf avian freedom and heavenward ascent in sunAs their puny bodies rise against his golden glory.
81Poverty for poetsJune 03, 2011Actually there was no poverty in the beginning.Later innocence had begun and started to growTo be a fiery youth with soft-figured girls in mind.Girls then took shape in sinuous bodies, floating,In diaphanous silks, chiffon and yards of length.Their pink bodies rustled like bougainvillea in breeze.And poverty happened because they needed to storeStuff for tomorrow use, to tell girls what they own.Poverty becomes less glamour below the hem lineFor poetry when body-cloth barely covers the bodyAnd grubby hands poke eyes at the traffic junctionAnd their nose runs in to the mouth uninhibitedly.
82AbjectJune 02, 2011At what level does one become abject;That is our question for a mere askingIn polite gatherings of people, with kidsCluck-clucking when asked if they careFor history, of race, of future mankind.You see it becomes real hot in the collarWhen the child asks what is there in itFor us, if you guys who have brought itAll about, the fire-clouds of destruction.You play silly child-games in adult worldOf child-like white innocence, yoga-gamesIn ochre robes on indecent rolls of stomachsShaking as though innocence is restored.All you say is mere air-words, double punsQuickly thought up in musical bathroomsAs you come under the shower thinking.We are abject, below poverty line, the lineBelow the navel where it eminently adds upOur poverty line is a few statistics of breadAnd some fry-oil, in the tents of non-work.
83LampsJune 01, 2011When lamps are lit in oil and flameThey flood our smells in early morningWith God’s jasmines, sweet cardamom,In offerings of fruit and leaf to pictures.Gods are smiling pictures that smellOf camphor fragrances, of lamps dyingTo be re-born as our next mornings.Our Gods are kings of bow and arrowTheir wives flanking them in blouses.When we do not smell our lamps dyingWe die like camphor with flames gone.
84The roadMay 31, 2011In the road lies being, my essence.The leafy banyans on both sidesDictate the timbre of my wordsWhere they bristle at their edges,In their leaf-ends mired in blue.A miasma in body affects my timeAnd eye-sight of mind, in its purity.Like the illusion in a flamingo landWhere a boat is tucked in the bottomOf an afternoon bog when flamingosYawn in the sleep of distant lands.At times a bearded traveler arrivesWith no sheep, only ancient drums.His sheep will not nibble at our leaves,As time hangs heavy in the blue sky.I take words out for their meaning,And for examining mind’s contents.The road for my journey has its endHanging in the loose sky, remainingWherever it is, with its feet boundAnd extremely mired in memory.
85OverwhelmedMay 29, 2011I am overwhelmed by a golden morningWhen it comes with the sounds of cattle,In the distance, of dust from angular hoofsOverwhelming mud-tracks up to the sky.The cattle are overwhelmed by their timeBy milk overflowing from their red uddersIn thin jet-streams that will overwhelm usIn our faces behind morning’s hind legs.The fleas overwhelm them in hind legsOf a tail that seems the end of the world.Sometimes I am overwhelmed by wordsThat flow smoother than milk streamsFrom a cow’s udders of a recent calving.In the white halls, when I leave the world,I shall be overwhelmed by its milky imagesClothed in no words, only derelict thoughts.
86CaricaturesMay 29, 2011The caricatures in our mind are we that roll,Roly-poly creatures, eating other people’s foodFor our bloated forms, far removed from life.The child is not father of man that is not manBut an aesthetic disjunct between life and art.A child is life, father art, beguiling and artful.Our larger than life bodies eat largely fromLarger than five-story steel carriage boxes.Our hideous mane waves yes-no when asked,A yo-yo, between seminal, unformed views.We have our quick-thinking survival games.We have to live after all in our larger tummy.We shall ask our child to caricature our forms.He alone understands the immensity of our lives.(After watching a Hindi movie entitled “Stanley-ka-Dabba”)
87The bullock’s geometryMay 28, 2011The bullock looked up from its creaky grinding.If only the grind-stone were square, less roundOr the hole were not a circle, but a straight lineThat remained open-ended till the yonder hillsOr the stone would go on a tangent of the grooveAnd trundle on the high road to the green hillsWhere such fine cud is waiting ,such cool shadows.
88ShameMay 27, 2011In a coma of sleeping, of ticking life of death,You have your fantasies of two eventful daysCut off from the world, like unwanted pages.Between then and now are two forgettable daysNeatly cut off from its sheaf, its bound volumeOf eighty years of life’s pages, dog-eared of use.But when you finally give account of yourselfYou have to explain two stubs in the epilogue.
89MurmursMay 27, 2011Often we hear a crowd’s soft murmursLike a wind that arrives in the pipal leavesThrough the hills, from the sea down there.On some days, at midnight, they soundLike the howl of a midnight wolf at the moonLike a plaintive cry from an atavistic past.
90CoherenceMay 25, 2011We soon realized we had to be coherentWith what we spoke in the night air,Shining words dropped in the thicket,Fireflies that flickered on hill bushes.Our words have to cohere with historyOur bodies and of our gone ancestors.We have to think in essential assonanceIn nature of things, under a nothing- sky,Tiny insects that bore witness to our deedsTheir hum of filigreed wings in night airTwigs that fell on our silence in the woodThe birds that spoke on a dark morningIn the grays of a golden dawn spawning.We are not singing. But to our thoughtsThere is a scheme, an unsought cadenceTo our actions, alliteration of beginningsIn five iambs of meters, some blank verseWrapped in scintillating speech rhythms.
92DoubtsMay 24, 2011On a clear walking day, a gentle breeze trailed us softlyLike a scruffy dog that sniffed our pant-leg in the slumsAnd took us for genuine friends all the way to our home.We would shut our doors on it , afraid in our deep lungs.We had doubts about its friendship under a winter skyFor the wetness of feelings, its moist love for our bodies.But we had no doubts about the white anti-histamine pillWe would surely take to secure our throats against its love.
93MetalMay 24, 2011Our lips pressed on the window bars smelled iron.We heard bells that rang and rang in the far templeIn brass domes that had fevered tongues in them.God’s tasty food went behind the red silk curtainsAs camphor flames illumined His black granite body.Many strung flowers went in a thread for His beauty.A pigtailed man sent words up and up to the skyIn a canopy that had hideous demons on the side.God’s water smelled of shining copper and flowers.His food tasted delicious, of jaggery and cardamom.
94Power of attorneyMay 24, 2011His deed is black in the dark of a hotel suiteHis words are white and violated her body.Here is a white moneybag with power to hurlKhaki food packets from whirring helicoptersTo black bodies of hunger and fly-ridden diseaseA white body with much power of greenbacks.What is the big deal, ask white countrymenA man-woman thing, the story of a lowly clerkWillingly submitting her body to a higher use?Black bodies can always be used by white onesAs those bodies deem fit, for white pleasure.Their forebears had taken a power of attorneyThat authorized all such uses of black bodiesBy white bodies at all times and in all climes.(The Chief of the IMF has been arrested on charges of assaulting ahotel maid)
95The button roseMay 22, 2011It is a moment’s roseJust a button in leavesIn a hole of memory.A button rose in a hole.Button it up, will you.It rose in a stair-spaceOf shuffling feet of time,An idea of button-smellLike a new cloth smell.Before it reaches GodAs incense not offered
96As oil-lamp not lightedButton it up, will you?
97The dreamerMay 22, 2011We are dreaming of the dreamerOf whose dreams we are figments.When the dreamer opens eyes after,We vanish in fragments, snowflakesThose that fly about in lazy thoughts.Silk, flowing garments fall smoothlyTo heaven’s music as broken clouds.The tree’s shadows are transient till noon.At noon they slowly vanish in the tree.They were the tree’s dreams at dawn.The boulder-hills flow into each otherTheir paths quickly vanish in bushes,At the end of the world, near the sun.They are the sun’s dreams at dawn.
98The cloudsMay 22, 2011We went on from being lazy, inert crocodilesTo broken white clouds that moved in our mindsAmid poetry’s bird-calls in the morning window.It was poetry again we tried in nature and menAs red anger could not be worked out in nature.You know we have become friends, by a chance,With fellow-creatures like busy red ants in a line.They have lived as easy as ever, with vulnerabilitiesAnd tiny helplessness they are not worried about.The sky-clouds are helpless , crazily driven in thereImpelled to rain plains, beyond the red mountains.The plains exist there in their broken watery mindsIn the thoughtlessness of a few tatters in the blue.
99HighwayMay 19, 2011The black asphalt goes broke in the skyAmid gray trees that vanish in a dense fog.Tea steams in mud cups, near a shack;A few fry-oil smells assault hungry noses.Man sends leisurely smoke swirls in the air.Urchins swarm around acrid old tire firesTheir palms held up to warm to their heat.A rickety bus kicks up dust in the distance.Right, said the old conductor to his skin bagFull of new currency notes and ticket stubs.The cleaner-boy stood on the foot-board,His tattered shirt flying like a windy flag.A man motions to slow down near the village.The man speaks steam into the winter airOf stale village politics, of women at homeOf crops failing to suck vapor from the airOf babies that are yellow- wealth goddesses.Giant trees disappear into the red earth.Their bodies are now and then sprawledAcross the roads of progress, their leavesEasy food for the passing herds of goatsThat will give white milk in the villages
100And warm red flesh to hungry stomachsIn the afternoon the bare hills breathe fireTheir trees stolen by greedy contractorsThey now stand naked to the sun, exposedAt night their thorny shrubs are set on fireLeaving black stubble on their bleak faces.Giant trucks rumble on the potholed roadWith Tata and Okay on their painted behindsTheir stomachs are pregnant with overloadsThose with an evil eye shall have black facesAs their drivers stop for a bath in the canal.
101HistoryMay 19, 2011At this point we are largely concerned with the historyOf our unmaking, not of what unmade us but of whatWe have unmade, in life’s freedoms, follies and foiblesWhich is, of course, the same thing as a private recordOf our unmaking, some reverse engineering of bodiesAnd pattern readings of free minds stuck in mere bodiesThe way our stomachs grumbled to hide comedy of ageAnd our temples throbbed to a little love and some follyTo run away from an overwhelming blandness of reality,Truths that overwhelmed souls like brittle autumn leavesThat came in thousands and buried them in their color.It is a history of hypotheses, of had we been this and this.
102TorporMay 18, 2011Torpor is what we all begin with on some daysWhen the pain of thinking percolates in the bodyWith not even blue blood dancing in the wristAs when you stare , behind white enveloping sheets ,At others in their slowly enveloping whiteness.
103MirrorsMay 18, 2011Our eyes are our own long- standing mirrors.There we preen our feathers and see through our daze.But our history brings lugubrious tears to them.Our eye-line defines our being and plots our soulIn the vast promontory of a luminous night sky.Our faces are but extensions of their soft wetness.Our eyelids have dramas unfolding behind themAs if there is a world out there hid in a silver back.
104Voices of innocenceMay 16, 2011Their words are spurious but most of innocent power,Of silky-white voices from soft wet drooling mouthsFrom the corners of lips, shadows of unsaid meaning.But shadows fall on voices to make beauty- rhythmsLike morning birds bleary-eyed from night’s tree-sleepAnd voices that gurgle, from repeated toothless laughterVoices that crawl effortlessly with no defeat of hurtAnd no scraping on knee-caps of floor-dust and sandAbove all voices that imperially take others for grantedThose others who exist merely to attend to their comfortAnd their annoyances shall quickly bring about redress.
105The tunnelMay 16, 2011Disjointed images crawled, in the mind’s wanderings,Recalling roadside snacks eaten near an old monumentWhen the light was at its best and life’s misty shadows.A tunnel took shape ,again and again ,in musty pagesAnd in other thinned out memories of a short storyOf a certain Maxim Gorky who saw what happenedIn life when they dug the earthy mountain from bothSides of the mountain and they had not yet come to meetIn the bowels of the mountain to say hello to other.He that dug the mountain is dead, his yellow handNow jutting out of the white snow, waving in the coldAs if it has conquered the mountain in its deep heart.When you meet, come tell me on my grave, it had said.Such things happened in literature, a maxim of Gorky.Such things happen in life too due to a design mistakeCome and tell me over my grave, says the poor engineerWho has been fined one rupee for the design mistakeAnd he then dies of a one rupee shame on white faceThere is not even his tragedy, but poetry of the unrealA farce that will leave us terribly crimson, in late hoursAn absurdity that will make Maxim Gorky turn in grave.
106(Reference is to the short story “Tunnel” by Maxim Gorky and to anunrelated real life incident of an engineer named Barog in BritishIndia who had committed suicide out of the shame of a one-rupeefine imposed upon him when the tunnel designed by him nearShimla turned out to be a disaster with the diggings from both sidesof the mountain not aligned with each other)
107Suffering in poetryMay 14, 2011When in poetry, we willingly embrace sufferingAs we do at home, in the music of the television soapWhere bongo drums sound as if someone is deadAnd there is suffering in belly, in dry eye-whites.Poetry happens at mid- night, in a whir of the fanIn a shred of white cloud, in a spiked leaf-end,Where it must fall before season, in eyelids closedAnd staring at the sky operating above the basement.Poetry has to celebrate suffering under the navel.
108TemporaryMay 13, 2011What is temporary in time is but a swallowingOf a little chunk of time by a cavernous holeA crater-hole formed by the collision of eternityWith our fleshly existence, in itself a tiny holeFormed by a chance collision in inner space.We are temporary existences, tents in the desertErected for the night before moving the next dayTheir spaces quickly eaten up by an endless desert.The spaces of our people have all been eaten upBy the deserts of time, temporary space-timesThat have all vanished in space leaving no trace,Except a beer-can, a tooth-paste tube, a rag dollThat would now exist in their temporary spacesOnly to be swallowed by the desert in the night .
109The parapetMay 12, 2011The moon climbed the sky in shreds of white clouds.The coconut tree dealt softly with our parapet wall.We saw bunches of coconuts sitting heavily in its bosom.Water sloshed in their shells shaking in the gentle windLike in a baby’s head we shook with our both handsWith tongue-clucking in mouth for the water soundAnd as the baby gurgled, we laughed in waters of love.At night the moon was badly caught in its branchesAnd for a while we thought it was devouring it slowlyUntil we would see it back in the sky with a silver ringThat would mean monsoon clouds later in the night.
110MisconstrualMay 11, 2011We then deliberated to impose a meaning on our worldAfraid there was a setback in the matter of perfection.Deliberated misconstrual should enable better meaning.But in the end all that remained words, much semantics.Spherical perfection is a needless appendage we carriedThrough our lives, to our lonely years and dark nightsWhen the worn smell of age, face-scowls of cussednessWould make even our misconstrual bereft of meaning.Well, we have lived our empty years and got nothing for itNot even once could we put a construction on its meaning.
111The windowMay 09, 2011You open the window only to smell wet dewOn brown ant-earth covering a decayed bark.You better let in a bit of air-conditioned windSo you have time to forget the dew on tree-rotThe day’s shuffling of feet, the smells of decay.You know she will not live long, now talkingOf pumping of water in an unreal backgroundTo thriving banana trees near the well hangingWith banana bunches with ripe yellow in them.I see ants creeping on her bark, on shuffling feet.I see an unreal rot in the sky, a poet’s thoughtWhere poetry rots in an unreal green of the sky.I see a large conspiracy of rot in sky and earth.Behind our backs tiny creatures of decay workAt night to bring about our rot in small pelletsOf brown earth completely covering our barks.
113WindMay 08, 2011The wind brought the dead leaves of a new autumnAnd duly rattled our windows, in gaps of their hingesThrough which eerie old ghosts shriek at midnights.In the bare hills the wind seemed still in sunny shrubsBut the ancient caves echoed with the manacled windOf history, within walls that bore many marks of menWho had brought their wind from the parched plains.Migratory birds brought their wind from the far landsA sticky wind that slowly settled on our drying puddlesAs they made themselves comfortable in the new homes .Our old tree ,failing to sprout leaves, pretended to swayTo the wind as if it still tickled its funny bones in the dayAnd made scary whoosh sounds in its leaves at night.
114Poetry without thinkingMay 07, 2011We begin it from beginnings, from a chaosOf darkness where you had not even onceSuspected existences, all that flimsy matter.In the dark night it would end up roundlyAnd as the east reddens it would begin againAnd several beginnings form in amoeba –likeExistences and word-shapes of free volitionTheir false feet, like lies to be spoken in the day,Wiggle to make our existences daily poems.We write without thinking, do not even write.When we think, our writing stops at our lips.
115SanchiMay 07, 2011This is the time of the fallen leaf of our timeTo turn over a new leaf, when there are onlySharp needles of tree-stems, their bare armsSupplicating to the sky to utter camera delight.Beyond the undulating hills a fallen leaflessnessPervades a monk-less silence, perfect in sky,An ancient absence of silently scurrying monksOf ochre robes in pursuit of white Buddha-peace.Buddha sits there, broken in piece, his eyesFixed at the gnarled tree-back bursting withBrown skin eruptions of painful knowledge.(At the ruins of the ancient Sanchi Buddhist monastery situated 60kilometers from Bhopal)
1The street with the wall at the endIn the morning the feet shuffle through streetsListening to God’s song in the ears, the splatterOf water before houses, brooms before housesWomen making gurgling noises in night’s throatOf water- cleaning of sleep, on tongues stretched.The men have tooth-paste foam at their mouths.Some days we reach the history of an old womanWalking the feet of yesterday’s marriages, picklesMade, worship of deities, hospitals of childbirthsBabies crying in lungs, dark nights spent on bodiesSilk sarees in steel trunks, fragrant brides of sonsSweetmeats brought from gods, fears of violence.An unease occurs of slowly dawning futility of it allAnd the feet somehow end up at the wall at the endAnd have to trace the morning back to a side streetLosing sight of the woman and her enacted history.
2Pensioner’s notebookWhen the word comes, the idea’s genesis occursIn the deep night, when idea happens in our eyesOpen from sleep, having been quiet on sleep’s bedOr in ghostly rapid eye moments of broken dreams.Body is thought, on a wrinkled face, deep in poems,Or on a furrowed brow, bearing daughters like SitaWho are destined to suffer as wives for bigger glory.Daughter has to prove her life and innocence by fireAll because she is someone’s wife in the deep jungle.A pensioner’s notebook has to record his existenceHe has to prove his aliveness to the birds in the tree.The birds have to prove their aliveness on the wire.They have to hold a daily parliament on T.V. cable.So nobody will deny their existence in color plumes.A pensioner has to prove his existence to the worldThe world needs a viable proof of earthly existence.A body or a signed paper is proof of yearly aliveness.September poems are not recognized for the purpose.
3Death for dishonourA crusty old boss causes death to girl’s dadAnd his dishonor weaving a swindling story.The father’s death is daughters beginningThe glory of womanhood, a sweet revengeWhen sold body is defiled for a sweet cause.A body has no purity when dead, in father.The gun is boss’ own phallus, waiting to dieAnd wipe the dishonor on daughter’s father.(Reading a short story titled Emma Zunj By J.L.Borges)
4The listThe list is formidable, frayed in the cornerYellowed, crawly writing, corner to cornerLike little ants in line that have lost the wayTo the edge of the wall, shouts lost in legsWe have got to do these things, before dying.Our dying list is a bucket list, a corners listWhere all is swept up to the angular edgesAnd we make our ant-lines, lost in our waysOur little white stuff, on our backs all the time.So many legs, we have lost count, so many.
5The listThe list is formidable, frayed in the cornerYellowed, crawly writing, corner to cornerLike little ants in line that have lost the wayTo the walls edge , their shouts lost in legs.We have got to do these things, before dying.Our dying list is a bucket list, a corners listWhere all is swept up to the angular edgesAnd we make our ant-lines, lost in our waysOur little white stuff, on backs all the time.So many legs, we have lost count, so many.
6SpacesI think of spaces, holes made by space in a sky of spaceHoles in under-shirts like tiny stars on a stand-still nightPockets that had the air and sea of laughing childhoods,Villages visited, fairs that sold hair-bands, plastic flowersSweets of white sugar, that took the forms of noisy parrotsOf dark men who had gobbled space behind those hillsAnd harvesters of green fields, their feet of sinking spaceIn muddy rice plantings, their female throats crying songsOf rain that sliced through space, in marriage with the sunSpaces contained in humongous mountains, like bubblesThat issue slowly from a kid brother’s running half-mouth.I think of space in this room that continues to the horizonBeyond curtains, houses, trees, vehicles, rivers, hills, seasOver heads of people, their thoughts, their sleeping dreamsThe blabber of children, the wails of old women, refusals toSpeak by dead men on the bamboo stretchers, the fires thatFollowed them in pitchers and rice-flakes strewn aroundAnd yellow marigolds that celebrated their joy of dying.I think of spaces eaten by the buffalos in their slow mouthsTheir thoughts in their udders of flowing milk, in their eyesThat flickered in the blinding headlights of oncoming trucksWith the spaces that stretched from them on endless nights.
8A petromax lampA lamp burned in white light, inside a soft rib cageFeeling like an exhausted star from the Milky Way.Its light curdled like white milk on the mud walls.The shadows of the rain moths swarming around itWere a massive mess of unreal figures on the wall,As the dots together became squares and polygonsIn the way they whirred around the petromax light.As the wind stirred in the leaves, the lamp dancedGently on the door frame, where it is hung by a nailIts shadow quickly responded on the wall in danceWith the entire halo of rain-moths around its head.
9BedBetween this ceiling and the earth is my sleepLying sprawled on a four-poster bed like a lizardWarm-blooded on roof, upside down, augmentingKnowledge and beauty, for its tiny insects waitingFor death to liberate them and it from the needTo hang upside down, to go about their business.Stealthy spiders trap them in their silk strandsGlistening in corners among the falling shadowsTheir meaning found in insects wanting to die.My sleep hangs between the earth and the ceiling.My four posters are the four corners of the worldThat brought me to the world from the earth up.Now I am three feet away from the earth and soonThere shall be no roof between sleep and the sky.
10State of affairsIn regard to the present state of affairsIt is the objects here that make it, not me.The philosopher sees light on the wallA Wittgenstein (pp 120), in convolutions.Our own state of affairs is a mere state.A state exists in words but passes over.Objects are not unhappy, only subjectsOnly they have affairs, drawn from objectsAnd not vice versa, or even virtue versaIf I do not speak them, they are not there.In a vast glass wall a young woman opensThe door inward, that should open out,A blonde, her thoughts open out, in a state.The color of hair is not her state of affairs.But no, she is not a blonde, nor do blondesOpen their outward opening doors inside.A glass wall that shuts out most of her lightA door that has no doorman in mustachesOpening a door to a cold night of reason.A body is embroiled in a state of affairs.A body that will one day be behind the glassSaying nothing in its pantomimic gestures.
12BirdsWhen I was a child birds gave me ideas,In their flights of rows, towards the lakeWhen they looked white and glisteningAgainst the autumn sky, my fingernailsClawing the air rhythmically and my lipsCalling them to infuse whites in my nails.Those days birds could drop their whitesDirectly in the behind of our fingernails.Actually they were bringing these whitesFrom the marshes of Siberia in the seas.A little drop of whites in children’s nailsWould not diminish their white too muchWhen they returned from our nesting trees.Birds gave me their ideas, from their wingsAnd bones full of hollow air, silky feathersThat would some times drop in our street
13Dancing down many layers of air playfully.We would catch and curate them in pagesOf books, afraid to use them for homework.
14RegisterLife goes on as frogs croak in the rain puddlesAnd pretty little brown birds continue to makeMothering noises over the balcony A.C. outlet.My register is filled with the smallest of details.In the evening the car stops at the intersectionWith some human hands inserted in our eye-holes.The car has gaping holes inside, behind the glass.The music fills the register; our ears are full of it.The register fills, from time to time, with details.The buffaloes rise against buildings in the grassTheir emotions in control, but their bowels open.Their milk overflows, grass in abundant supply.Their milk is white, like the whites of our eyesThe register is full from time to time with details.We heard about a boy who stared in the hospitalTrying not to cry, when they were shaving his head.It is the uncertainty of what lies inside his skull
15That is what makes him cry, not just an egg-head.An egg-head is a joke, a laughing matter in mirror.But we are all egg-heads and we are in this together.Our register gets filled with details from time to time.
16Poetry of ghostsThe poet brings up poetry from random wordsPowder-dried to make a street mosquito killer fogEnveloping ghosts of persons that never existed.Poetry is thus made from blurbs of apparitionsThose have vaguely tapering tails in place of legsLike you draw them roundly in kids’ magazinesVanishing in trees, if you answer a ghost’s riddleAnd if you dont answer, head will break in pieces.Somewhere in the head you have a thing growingThat makes your head break, even if you answerAs the ghost does not accept it as the right oneBecause there are no right answers to its riddles.
17Decline and fallIt is September and you mark the decline of the sunBehind the long rows of buildings and listless trees.From the train its decline is noticeable in arid wastesThat have straggling shepherds and their grazing sheep.The sun does not envelop their bodies in silhouettes.The orange of light shall wait at the mountains mouthBeyond the spartan colors of the lake, less its shimmerAs clouds pass without event, giving rain a sabbatical.The decline will of course be followed by an exciting fall.
18ForgettingForgetting is sound disappearing, body’s spasmIn folds of death, mind’s entrails in a stomachAs everything of you freezes in life’s green liquidAn ice block of death, whose water of life meltsThe night when it happens in a death that staresAnd you collect life’s water in rags of wet clothesAs body is a waiting rag torn off from your fabric.Forgetting is fire and wood, in a crackling sound.
19The bush shirtThat was a bush-shirt with big, big flowersA soft windy silken shirt we wore to schoolTo others’ envy, with pockets on both sidesThat had bulged with flowery spaces and air.We were hurling fingers in air as if clawing itNot for any complaint, but just in boy-show.(We had not picked it up in the wayside bushWe were not bush-men of arrows and bow)We had left our long shirt with horn buttons.We looked like fierce Afghan men in turbansWith moustaches that struck terror in shirts.Our buttons were two at the top, to our neck.When the bush shirt came our money changedOur annas went of four to a rupee, to easy paisaWe now ate rice in shining stainless steel platesAnd we played in streets seven stones and ball.Our moustaches are silver over frayed collars.We now have pounding hearts under our shirtsWeak of memory, but still love the big flowers.
21River stepsRiver steps are wet with village women’s baths.A golden sunlight floods their mornings in boatsLeaving early for mountains on wrinkled rivers.Giant banyans greet them from the other bankSpreading their shadows of hair on the blue sky.Mornings are for sun, palms cupped with waterLooking the sun in the eye, lips softly tremblingWith prayers, as white wet clothes clung to body.On the river bed, the buffaloes bath in shallows,Unperturbed by the sun flashing in vacant eyes,Like little rocks in the bed laid smooth and bareBy a dried up river, after last year’s flash floods.
22GraniteGranite is our stone, blue – black like Krishna,That provokes strong feelings, hard on fingersBut soft and silky in its core, in hues like rain.It is like Krishna’s belly, filled with flute musicBy a river of gentle ripples flowing from trees.There is rain and wind in it, as in moonless sky.Feel it , play on it and sing its mountain tunes.The more you work on it the silkier it becomes.
23MoonlightYesterday’s moon had slid behind the schoolTo surface today at midnight, behind the shed.It is a struggle for the cow to reflect on eventsOf the day, near the haystack, with tacky fliesNeedlessly bothering its tail, while the moonIs reflecting temptingly on its water trough.The straw is all around its feet, stewed with urineAnd Bengal grams tastefully added to porridge.There at mountains all was peace and heaven.The grass was just fine, the flies less of a bother.A red bull came with dishonorable intentionsBut was promptly ignored, as if he did not exist.The moon is now directly above the asbestos roof.The night is quiet with the street dogs gone to sleepAnd the moonlight has become brighter and cooler.Somehow the cow seems less angry with the bull.
25Another motherJust as my own had gone out of the mindAnother mother came to night in light wordsSpoken at the moon that hid still in clouds.The night generally prevailed on the road.A machine then kept whirring at the backThe machine that churned out hard wordsIn the night’s vast wastes across a dark sea,A sea of words that surged in old thoughtsLike the sea behind humming casuarinasIn old custom houses sitting pretty moroseAs a white spit hurled at them in contempt.The night swallowed her too in its memories.
26Bus dustThe bus shelter stands against a silhouette of bus dust.A newspaper half-read lies on a lap in its cement bench.A towel is spread on the seat, with an open-ended smileHidden in beard growth, meant to forget hunger pangs.The face inside has no travel on mind, just a killer of time.Layers of fine bus dust have settled on it burying its years.
27The broken moonThere is a broken moon on the housetop thereCold and soggy, snuggling to the breezy coconut.The elephant god is not looking for it for laughterAfter a heavy meal of sweets in his child-stomach.Our dear elephant-god lies now broken himselfAt the bottom of the lake, snuggling to the algae.Time for a many-armed mother, who shall bestowOur victory for this season, wealth for our devout.The mother maternal, eyes wet with love for sonsAnd terror in tongue, trounces demons under foot.After the victory she too will go down to the lakeTo the drum beating of music and camphor flames.Our gods are like us, of soft clay and kitschy colors.They disappear from lives after the season is over.
28The whistleThe whistle blares it is the inky night of 2’O clockMarked by feet in old boots, in a Himalayan walk,With their stick tapping the earth to warn thieves.Another whistle, man and boy blew this morningWhose shrillness of blowing sounded quite hollowAcross the bare earth and houses to friends downAll in mirth, the boy in a snigger after the whistle.Their whistle is mere surrogate for night’s cricketSince the latter has taken short leave from bushes.When our rice is ready for meal in pressure cookerThe whistle sounds blowing the lid off afternoon nap.The pressure rises in vapor, pressing down the valve,A short whistle-blower on hunger pangs in our belly.
29RashWife bursts into rash, as pink- hued as pollenFrom the plotted hibiscus flower on balcony,Petite, not liking birds, honey not dripping.Mother birds causing rashes are pure baloney.Birds do not bring allergy from A.C. outletsBeing brown and stupid with little chick-letsOpen-mouthed with wonder at mama’s feats.Nor does the political grass from a green lakeThat smells of so many dirty fluids and deeds.The lab says unpronounceable issues for rash.Little dots on wife’s moonless sky are its cash.The rashes are body’s too much of a good thingAnti-bodies wiggling in the blood ready to sting.You must know which rascals they are fighting.Otherwise you are doing shadow-boxing thing.
30The doorPlastic doors are much like ear membranesThey last while you last, water not touching.The shower is effervescent in the bathroomBut the door remains calm and wet to gills.A handle that does not go down to fingers?Use it to upside, when the urge in you is quickAnd the bathroom is getting ready for a song.You will need it, man, in the thick of the nightAs your bloody system comes to blinding stopAnd doors open together to let in cold draught.
31WalksLong are our walks, morning and evening,Some mental walks, hearty walks, city walks.There are walks, talk walks, like talk going onIn waking limbs, body thinking under the skull.Body merely thinks as its mind which walksLike a hundred-footed worm, a goods trainOf a hundred steel boxes on unending trackThe mountains walk unendingly to the horizonAnd the horizon walks unendingly to the sky.Words walk, spirit walks, our hands go upIn the night air in vertical sky breaking walk.Chilly fields walk and up down with the trainAs also the blue bush birds on phone wiresThe bridge noisily walks away from the train.
32RainRain in the afternoon makes less noiseOn a napping mind, more on a dulled skinThe way it tickles it by the wind from treesAnd comes in instalments like crow-cawsAnd rice poundings in neighbour houses.Half -awake eyes are shut in old thoughtsAs certain rain of day and sun on the side,Rain and sun married like dogs and foxes.It is at leaf-ends that rain-magic happens.The sun trains a flashing mirror into roomWay past gaps in curtains, on to the wall.
33FragmentsIt seems we cannot but be mere fragmentsIf it would mean many parts coming togetherIn re-assembly just like in a natural systemOr in a page of a novel, leaving action to guessIn the snows of Kilimanjaro, a rich womanContent to watch gangrene dying in a snarlA Hemingway hero who forgot to put iodineOn thorn wounds under a September sky.Here within walls, there is no further actionExcept dead silence, beyond a dying gangreneFestering on foot in proud wails, in nasty snarls.We cannot be making up things all the timeThe way nature makes assembling parts easyIn programmable sequence of parts to wholes.Now what ,asks itself against the wall up northWhen it comes to re-assembly of broken parts,Memories that had long since trailed off in dustTheir drag marks collecting rain in their holes.
34The wooden pillarThe pillar is smoothly rounded by the girlAs she swirled with hands holding it tight.Her eyes looked dizzily at the hot tin roof,Her face in slant, at forty degrees to pillar.She whirled around it holding it steadfast.The pillar is her friend, its shape smoothWith her fingers wrapped around it in love.It is worn smooth with her love for years.
35The window-sillThe window is lack of matter in matter,A hole that is wall against being aloneAn open invitation to city’s darkness.The sill is there to break abruptnessTo make landing softer and smoother.It is there as a transit point before fall.It is there to host rain-moths that dieOn the pane ,trying to embrace light.
36It is Krishna who did itI have not made the war or these enemies,Nor the clang of metal, nor the fall of duskNor blind men, love of sons, blindfold eyesNor ivory dice with dots of five, four, threeNor caves nor foreheads bleeding with truth.I look at the fish-eyes, fight for fair maidensDivide women into brothers, cry as they loseClothes for honor, never ending as Krishna.My forehead is still bleeding for useless truthIn fluorescent letters, on the flanks of hillsTheir trees precariously perched, from whereWomen warriors jump on horses with babies.A bearded man fought for his useless truthIn blazing skyscrapers with vaporous bodiesIn a fall of truth struck by planes of beardsWhen in direct contact with a burning godAnd fair maidens dancing in fire and water.I have not made the war or burning enemies.It is our Krishna who did it, blue as our sky.
37The earth-potThis earth is a pot, full of light in its holesIf not holding water for crows with pebbles.A mere wheel turns to give birth to it softly.In summer its earth smells nicely of water.Its shadows at bottom betray our emotionsOf deep passion, thirst for hills, dark fearsIn deep down of belly, butterflies for future.It is like our mom, silk-soft in belly for us.
38BodyBody is the essence of night, a falling of flowersA few particles of the night, on the way to dawn.The red of their stems is the feet up, faces downQuietly buried in the earth of the dust, leaf-sweptBy women of organic garbage, to greater dusk.Bodies are spoken of well in heaven, their seatsReserved where beauty is condemned to danceIn tasseled silk blouses that are not quite there.The bodies exist till our minds permit, not thereWhen our eyes become shut, on not intact skulls.
39Who started the wind?In the river, you look up from the waters,And see the wind walking down calmlyFrom the hills that have holes at the top.On your feet, if joined in a lotus postureAt the river’s bottom, the wind will pushThrough currents smelling of the far hills.Your face can smell the wind in the riverWhere it touches your cheeks, in caress.Surely the trees have not started the wind.The trees just shake as though they did it.It is not even a sea of giant rolling waves.Those just pretend they brought it about.It seems the wind comes from upstreamRiding down to the sea on the river’s back.The sea hosts the wind from all the hills.Who originated the wind is now answeredFinally and without equivocation, after all.
40Mirrors in mirrorsIt came to you before night, before sleepThe fact that watchmen dream of sleepWhile still drunk and dreaming, dreamsWithin dreams, like mirrors into mirrorsEndlessly entering, never to turn back.You drink cool milk and chocolate to calmYour nerves before sleep, as there is a fireIn the belly, not the one they use to driveUp the north, in the mountains and pineNeedles on floor, to collect a few in pockets.You are concerned with foam mattressesLeft to dry in the sun by a drunk watchmanWho has smelly dreams of own to dream.There is sunshine in his dreams, in his eyesBetrayed by a nose-smell of alcohol in air.Your mattresses are ready for your dreams.You have poems that begin afresh each day.Your dreams are in poems, poems in dreamsIn eyes deeply red with forgetful liquids.
41The immersion of Ganesh idol in the lakeThe lake flaunts plastics and floating godsWith their eyes and feet in clay fragmentsStaring at the clouds, their dark acrylic huesLighting dusk fires on its smiling ripples.Their leaves and dead flowers lie in a heap.Dark men meditate on colored gods of clayTheir wobbling feet made of it, bottom up.Children’s gods fade into red, blue balloonsAnd their stomachs ache for evening snacks,A few warm golden teeth, with hair on topAs a golden ball, tossed in the lake, floats,At the shore, near the holes where men live.Men in the tall machines lift their clay gods,Their women red in faces, their hair in knots.The flowers turn the lake into a yellow sea.They first hoist their gods into the blue skyAnd hurl them into the waters, all in a ripple.
42LiteratureYou are quite a thing, as a black crow cawsA big man vertically split by mind-thoughtIn sky rings of white smoke, falling deeplyIn love, at times, with just being beautiful.Your everyman touches on your raw nerves,Street men that are not yet your real people.These are the phantoms that walk the edgeTrying not to fall off with the hems of lungisIn their hands, in walking in slippered feet.Their walking sleep evokes big time yawns.You have soft dreams of mirrors that showBig time visions of you, in the grand walkIt is the lungis held by the hand in the streetThat makes the world, in the street cornersAnd the mongrel that follows you by the lake.It is they who make your literature for you.
43The men in the photographThese men are in shadows, all the timeTrying to speak, to open their mouthsIn the temple, at the lake, on the roadTheir common destiny looks unfoldingBounded by their collective lip-sealingThe ineptitude of their lives and bodies.If only they opened, shouted and forgotTheir gaffes, their shame, common guiltThe primeval guilt flowing from bodiesThe guilt of colors, the inevitable doomForeclosing of future options, the wallsBuilt on their words, the burden of a past.They are there at the temple in squares,Palms cupped to water, their heads hungTo obeisance, their songs sung in unisonTheir hopes jumping from thing to thing.The camera would bring them out of lightTheir bodies dumped in squares of shadeIn limpid pools of thought, under the trees.Their water flows in thin shiny streamletsTheir words frozen at lips, still tremblingAt their imagination, in a foregone reality.
44TempleDrowned in the temple’s noon shadowsMan and tree turn phantoms, whose lipsHardly seem to move, except in the windBearing the fragrance of the smiling godsIn incense, flowers and camphor flames.The priest‘s pot-belly quivers as god-wordsIssue forth from his large lips, licking wordsAs if they were sweets, delectable to tongue.The trees begin to speak their sibilant wordsAs shadows flow on the mosaic of the floorFilling the camera’s eyes with a mist of love.
45GravelWe try to sleep off our daydreams.It is when dreams come and we tryTo sleep over dreams as in the night.We doze off on train seat, eyes shut.The train sleeps its eyes wide open.Its sleep sounds come from its undersideWith tiny gravel stones hitting the night.They are its shattered dreams about hills.
46Tyranny of timeA new morning is opening in my window.A September wind is speaking in its treesBefore customary rain of the elephant-godWho will drown in the pond later in shouts.The poet asks to please, please let go of himOf the stranglehold of time on his innardsA rumble at four is hardly a photo-captionWhile some of our pictures do need a caption.Of course pictures are not made for captions.I live in the deep bowels where time rulesMy bearded rebellion gets calmly put downWhile body refuses to succumb to the windAs the tree there does in its body in the sky.
48EchoesWell into music, you sound your noteA jarring note, just an echo of harshnessAn electric fan that has lost its bearingA cane juice crusher that is splutteringShortfall of sweetness in a mouth of echo,A gearbox dripping in thick black grease.Where echoes abound, the tree is bareOf spring leaves, roots bony in the earthIts birds de-feathered of love, of its chicksThe eagle is on roof in echoes of tragedy.Unhappiness echoes in its wings of flight.Well into music the goat shouts in its skin.Its shouts are echoes from an alive skin.Its drum beat is a mere illusion of sound,An echo from the old sounds of mountains.
49The sockA single cotton sock caresses the foot.Its other seems missing in the closet.It seems your leg pairs do not match,Except in their holes, similar-shapedAt the toe, in its curve and asymptoteWhere the toe tends to a shoe’s curveBut will meet it only at its dark infinity.But the wind in their holes is the sameIn the way it tickles the toe in the hole.
50We stymie youBefore holes, we shall stymie youIn a global challenge of the earthWiping deep red tears of currencyOverflowing holes, deep as night.The holes are bottomless of money.We mine ferrous sorrows of the earthAnd of trees suspended from the sky.Our holes are full of rain of the seasTrapped in a hot sun, in smaller seas.They mirror the darkness of our walls.(About the illegal mining of the iron ore in the Obulapuram belt thathas caused large scale ecological damage)
51ShapeThe shape is in the night hidden from our view.You take to night to drown in delightful confusionBrewing in a freedom to take shape from a wordWhen word is poem, a woman that comes to youWith the freedom of shape, from your innerness.Then a crow caws in the dawn of a poem walkA walk postponed for a poem, a thought womanWho comes to you with your own shape of body,The mind shaping a body you love in all shapesA shapelessness of freedom, a release of mindAn amoeba of no shapes, with false feet all sidesAlways flexible, moving only to stay immobileWith the possibility of disappearing as a shapeTo be a cloud of all shapes in the space of time.A patch of discoloration on a wall, a rain-mossBlack of the summer sun, a soft morning soundOf wood against metal, a smell burning in milk,A death into the sky, a dark fear, a loss of shape.
52Dancing beautyWe have to think of beauty in our dance.Our camels look funny and quite riskyFor a fall from their humps, in climbing.But their colours make them soft in skyWhen they look up from their tall necksThey really touch high-end palm trees.In the desert we have to move our feetQuickly, to not get scalded in hot sand.We have to dance our feet in blue sareesHolding their hems in both hands at backAs indulgent camels watch in their mirth.In desert we are not our women but men.But we dance their dance rememberingTheir steps on the hot sand, as they wouldBack home, in kitchens and earth-stovesWhere fire dances its tongues on breads.Our women’s eyes are of smoke and fire.When they dance there is fire in their eyesMelting their kohl in streams of black tears
53Flowing on soft cheeks like rivers at night.
54Putting the cart before the horseHorse- cart is women in laughter,A happiness image, a moving awayFrom house, water tap, bitter treeA broken wall of never to return,A space lost on other side of wallOf women’s heads peeping, withEyes of laughter, wanting to knowWhite dragons of surprised eyesEyes crinkled in round disbelief.A guava tree of ripe fruit not theirs.Smells lost of flowers on the roofBy smells that overwhelm sensesOf horse-turds on rhythmic hoofs.Loss of film songs is felt in the airIn loudspeakers over mango trees.The annual dragonflies do not comeThis season of monsoon, from grassTo lose their silly wings on the wall.Everything is in a blind daze of rainIts flies conspire to hide the worldBeyond a tuft of tail, in busy swish.Horse cannot see green on other side,Nor the world beginning with tailBut all the while, laughter goes on.
56WifeAnne Bradstreet was the wife of a husband.If ever two were one, then surely we,said she.It is all in the things of the night utteredIn an utter seventeenth century bleaknessOf a New England straight from the ship.An earldom left in general vagueness of seaFor a tableless living among fierce Indians.Wife’s importance lies in the other of lifeNot merely of the fire, seven times, roundAs every year you think of the seven rounds,In gold, in textiles, in dim-wit restaurants.Wife-love is in the early day of a long nightA pillow night of fears, ghosts and the deadAs you turn to the left of belly fear in sleepYou hear her sleeping, re-asserting your life.
57LarvaeFrom trees, on a gentle wind from the hillsA new light shall fall on the fluff of marigoldIts petals scattered for bees to tempt smellsOn antenna of viscous honey, pollen of love.The larvae are growing as luminescent dustIn beams of light that travel down from the roofIn chinks of old tiles, awaiting their changeAfter the moss turns on them black in sunWhen new tiles will replace them, by workersSitting on the roof as if they are sky-birds.The larvae are growing in white water- cloudsHoarding river and sea for tomorrow’s festivalWhen they will be beating tin-roofs like drumsPushing dried flowers down their corrugationsAnd send down snakes of water to our ground.Of light dust and snowflakes the larvae will growTill evening when they will vanish in our pages.
58Otherness of roomThe wind blows in a light rain on the roadIn gentle leaves waving the dawn to break.Here I shall pass in the otherness of roomWhen the sea howls child fears in pocketsFilled with flowers plucked early morningFor worship, leaf by leaf, of gods in framesOn words uttered on trembling lips of other.Rooms are demolished like they of the seaLying in string cots as they stare at the roofWith sea memories of shells on the beachIts snails walking slowly in crooked lines.The tea vendors of beach laugh like snailsOffering paper cups for your life’s worries.Their footprints are demolished by wavesAs soon as they are made, their paper cupsSwallowed by the sea in otherness of sea.A loving parijat tree drops shy love-flowersOn its utter defeat, right outside my room.Their death-smells enter holes of my roomRe-defining my room, its walls reinstated.
60The mobileThe mobile is now on the moving taxi seat.Speak into it, you eyes, its Latin ring is seenIn the mauve of the taxi seat, quite agitatedOf much pants comfort, less heart- warmthOf yesterday, in more cold of today’s words.It is in the hot words of wax in a cold syntaxOf a mobile talk between shoulder and headAs the former comes close to a sneezing head.Its words are filthy, steeped in religious tunesIn the kitschy filmy tradition of the back alley.Its tunes rhyme with the body’s foot tapping.The head is now leaning tower on motorcycle.Such heads, leaning on shoulders, warm copsIn their pockets, their hearts, burning stoves.Its talk now walks on its feet on road like birdA non-flying bird of the wingless, its feet tiedTogether in the coop, in a joy ride to market.It will speak in hush from someone’s stomach.
62The hurricaneThe earth had only slightly stirred thereLeaving denizens remarkably disposedTo funny jokes and light banter, betweenWisecrack twitters of blue birds perchedOn the windowsills of frivolous jokesters.The visitor hurricane is a delicate thingA softer sister of earlier, who turned toughIn her underpants, blowing it really hardOn their lives in smug suburban houses.This one is soft-spoken, unlike prior sister,Only gently touching their lives and roofsAnd ever so soft on weekend getaway cars.Nature is not twitter stuff over fat pizzasBy sedentary geeks behind smog screens.Mocking nature may be a happy pastimeBut remember there could be worse sistersThat may not blow as softly in our faces.
63Flowers, leaves and fruitOur flowers and leaves and fruit are hereIn silver-white plates of morning fragranceFrom burning incenses, flames of camphor.Our waters stream between lips and palms.Our flowers shall be flung at framed pictures.Come face to face with the elephant headThat laughs on a rounded stomach of sweetsThe head of a trunk from a severed northOn a torso standing guard on mother’s bath.A father is egotistical of a divine drum danceHe that dances in snow hills of blue poisonThat cannot wait to see wife bathing in cave,He that smears his body with our death-wish.His prankster son has to eat in his stomach.Pock-marked moon laughs at his bloated stuff.We all love him the way he pats his stomachWhen he will pace up and down on our roofAfter a heavy meal of rice cakes and jaggery.(Tomorrow is the worship day of Ganesha, the elephant-godwho visits us every year this day)
64The chair as object poemI dislike the word chair just before dawnWhen I have to hit upon it when the windOutside the window falls on nearby treesIn a rhythm of rain, expected in daybreak.As a false positive I have to like the chair.Its contours are deeply etched in my mindAs if they were from my very ancient man.Here I am talking about the chair as objectWhile sitting in it as subject doing poems.The chair suddenly ceases to be the object,An object poem in my subjective thought.It becomes me in its pearl-white plasticityNot deigning to melt into my light lettersOf poems materializing from air as objects.My words turn objects, ahead of the chair.They are now object poems like the chair.
65The chairThe chair’s memories go back to a sylvan pastOf animals, trees and foliage, in caves of darkMen, women and kids in leaves of loin cover,Fire in twigs and bird calls and bees of honey.The ancestors might have sat on its woodHopping from tree to tree, looking for chairs,When there were no chairs, only branches.You still see the ancestors’ seats delineatedIn the chair, as if they had once sat on them.(Think of the chair as Idea of chair, in a platonic sense of an objectbeing copy of the Idea. Reflect on the slight depression built in thechair anticipating how the sitter’s body will fill the chair)
66GrandmothersOur grandmother we remember vividlyIn the moon and sitting on a sagging cotWoven with old stories and waving treesCirculating the moon wind and princes.Coconuts join in stories of green lands lostOn daughters’ weddings, gold shining less,Vegetables brought and cut, from groves.Men come in rain bearing wedding stuffsBetween slippery field boundaries of rice,Paddies with water snakes swimming earlyWomen ankle deep in mud, their shouldersOn level with the mountains of the horizon.Grandmothers cry from no salt in the eye.They cry softly from waters in the headOf memories of husbands lost in opiumOf sons and grand-nieces lost to a moon.They laugh toothless laughter in ripplesOver vegan jokes made specially for kids,Not on fart jokes in high demand by them.As they make hot evening snacks for kidsThey rub their eye-whites, of blue smoke.
67SufficientWe have never felt it sufficient in all thisIn blocks of time we had made quite earlyOne after other, the latest one sticking outEarlier ones fading away in a dust of time.We have never felt it sufficient to work outThe grand logic of it all, in a clear ontologyA hierarchy of speed, a journey in the wild.A mere outcry, a walk in the wind aloneOver dry leaves that hid a lizard, nothing.There emerged no poetry in this blind pathMerely a fear of fears, of death and night.A piano solo concert, from a friend’s sonA solar energy that flowed from another’sWere benchmarks, a few lines in the sky,Ephemeral as eccentric son of other friendIn a clink of bangles, of a gene gone awry.All is in a mind’s dark, in a together-guiltA son’s failure in father’s life and thoughts.One does not feel sufficient, father of son.
69The cold windThe window has let in a benignly cold airBetween a promised rain and a buried rainOf yesterday’s clouds dripping from trees.I close windows to formally remove a clothOf needless wool warmth over old shoulders.A mountain arrived by a kind monkey godWho promptly consumed garlands of eatsIn his ample rolls of neck, a laughing matterIn the foolishness of our pre-facto desires.The monkey who burnt an island with a tailWill surely bring us mountains of smugness,Our desires realized in solid gold and power.The cold wind shall cease only on our gravesWhen our desires no more burn in templesAnd our gods turn silent in their sanctumsAnd look away quickly from our burning eyesEntirely embarrassed, of promises not met.
71The world has already begunLook, I already hear the morning noisesOf the bird parents to their new chicksAbove the dripping A.C. unit in balcony.White flowers have already broken outOn the wire mesh as though they wereMy bath-wet clothes hanging in the sun.I look out the parapet for parijat droppingIts flowers, their heads down and feet up.Looks like the world has already begun.
72The table lampA clipped lamp poured its light on lightTwice it went to sleep and on waking upIts sleep-weary eyes blinked in disbelief.A poem before dawn from knots of wordsOn what rhymes with a green table light!Nothing rhymes with a table lamp right.Poetry of things comes from inner light.Its music is in the very nature of things,The way it trains its light on trite things.
73FamilyJust a few bodies live together in a hole,A burrow in a space of cement concrete.Pigeons that return on beaks of worms.Gophers in their holes of common spaceExploring life, sharing its outer darkness,As the sky hangs in balance, tautly held.Our children eat porridge off our hands.We are their white walls, with nail-holes.Their clothes are hung in our blankness.Old men stare at ceilings, under the stairs.Sagging cots bring them closer to the earthAway from the overhanging sky of the roof.Just a few bodies that return to the earth,One by one, noting each other’s presence.
75LaughLaugh if you must, in your body shudders,Especially if it would hurt, in you of night.Pain or pleasure would vibrate in eardrumLately suspected to hear less of own wordsThat ring as though addressed to audience.You needlessly increase volume of speechBeyond the hearing distance in your roomOr above the market din and bees buzzing.Otoliths may cause balance distortion in old.Nice word this, please remember to look upWhen the vibration comes in the dictionary.You want to sense meaning, you shall vibrate.The Buddha laughs on enormous stomachNot the one under our ancient wisdom treeBut the yellow one, of a figurine in curio shop.Wisdom is when one laughs at rolls of painNot of too much eating in moon of rice balls.He laughs because he cannot cry in the view.Under the circumstances, he vibrates of pain.
76You want to celebrate years in wax flamesTo vibrate to sounds of breaking birth walls.But take care of the all-around green fluid,And a cord that has to be cut off from mamma.That is when you vibrate in lungful of laugh.When you cry, you laugh at the darkness leftAnd the pain of light on new rolls of stomach.
77ChildrenYou children from our knees downLook upon the world as blue hillsIn a fuzzy grove of far, far trees.You play games in wood pillarsOf eye’s dreams, also-have-beens.You hide and we seek very eyes.Shout if you must, when the stoneDoes not tumble on the sixth one.You play cheat, ball a mere flower.A marigold tossed from cardboard.Your rules change like life’s rulesWith no notice, now this, now that.From knees up don’t grow to sky.Make clay god out of a wet earthA funny god of an elephant-childEating big balls of rice and sugarInto a stomach, rounded of eating.When you finish making clay godPlease make us too, in river loamSo just like him we can easily breakIn the swirling waters of monsoon.
79FractalsSix ’O clock and it is time to repeatOn scale, joint walks, up and yonder.The overcast sky says much nothing.We understand life beside the tree.Repeat the tree and the old dusty carWith the same old names washed offIn yesterday’s rain, waiting in new dustFor the same names, heart and arrow.You looking for repeat arches in art?I have them plenty in my digital boxIn old tombs where angry sultans lieIn endless repetitive arches of beautyWhere men vanish in trees at the end.Our walks are repeat feet under shoesOccupying space, little by little, in sky.The feet shuffle slowly, one behind one.Eight ’O clock is time to repeat on scaleA bus of people on rods, lunch boxesTouching sweaty bodies tantalizingly.
80SeminarWhen a midnight dog had barked at the darkThere came up a word seminar from the nightIn a hall of poets chasing truths widely knownAn electric fan stirring its hot air of repetitions.Supposing the seminar is shifted to a sit-stoneUnder the tree, with ant-holes brimming with viewsA passing fantasy from inside a sleeping mind.Here we have a seminar of e-poets with lulu booksBehind the window curtains, to bypass brown antsWho vent strong acidic views on our under-legs.We will not miss hot air of higher reaches of hall.A man sits in the back row with a head in handsDreaming of golden brown lunch with lentil soup .He has no rabid views about making verse blankIn the forenoon sessions, after a biscuit break.Just when the speaker comes up with a rare gemThe loo at the back beckons the high and the lowThe lulu poets stand in rows before filling pots.It is in these mini-seminars that inspiration flows.
81SororityThe soap sisters drop their doe-eyesToo soon and pretty on the noses,The way they sniff at their sistersAll in the race for big house powerHigh-ceilinged and chandeliered.Creepy music is suited to villainy.As they pull female legs, in music,Around mustachioed landlordism.They are sisters up against sisters.They are now in plush boardroomsIn their fight against their sororityAll for sons, fathers and husbandsNot against male tyranny, but for it.They would even check for stomachsBig with sorority, to finish it all offMuch before it will scream in the air.(About woman stereotypes in Indian T.V. soaps)
82BrakesSilent rain and rainbows of greaseTrace on the road polygonal maps.The grease maps drop from squealsOf rained brakes in car undersides.Their brakes rebel against tyrant feetAnd trace line-maps of free countriesAs their throats shout hoarse slogans.
83Posthumous poetryWe are mostly writing posthumous poemsIn the corners of our souls, in the outer reachesOf our bodies, from the despair of ripe nights.A shrill midnight whistle causes such poems.Some poems come from lonely street cornersWhere heavy boots will arrive, on HimalayanFeet with large sized memories of kids and wifeIn a firelight of warm coals in deep snow hills.The street dog’s howls aggravate such poems.A bloody uprising in us triggers some poemsIn the unreal company of a Kafka in beardWhen humongous creatures fill front roomsOf overflowings from pockets, book shelvesOur windows closed from the inside of rain.Our literary agent has just died of our poems.He will sure publish our poems posthumously.
84The brick wallWhat came to the mind was a brick wallIn several squares of thought, a soft windBuffeting the creepers flying on its holesAnd moss of history faded into black night.The busy brown ants were not left behind.If it was words of bricks we might build itIn its brown brokenness,on music of thought.A bird visitor would come in brown stripesIts fickle screw-head moving in sky for worms.The creeper strutted in the sun its proud stuffOf flowers of paper hanging in leaves in pink.It was not a mere brick wall, but a broken wallOf holes that hid childhood, my lost years.
85StoryIt is raining lightly through the nightOn muddy streets and rain-puddlesOn cars under heavy veil, squattingAs if dying to make story under trees.The trees sat there without brown birds.The brown birds will come later to usFrom a golden sun behind our houseTo make nest of straw in our A.C. outlet.In a room of silence I make my storyOf a friend with heart that just rebelledAgainst too much edible oil and work,In a calm of death that had no foretasteOn our tongues in the fragrant harbor.The brown birds have to make a storyBehind the A.C. outlet in green strawAnd twigs that will not stay on clamps.The rain has made story of reluctanceOn muddy roads refusing reverse-flowUnder trees that yawned in boredomAs stories spread lazily around them.
86MeaningWater has meaning when it overflowsLike god-sounds, pictures of lost colorWith white faced women in old clothesAs they flow from sounds of old space.Meaning shall continue without break.The objects quickly lose a revised sense.Their sounds combine with their eyes,The seeing eyes of all objects in poems.Their meaning shall accrue as they seeBehind senselessness, in fail interiority.Sounds have no meaning, when heard.Images are all meaning, when in letters.They weave meaning around our things,A mosquito in dark waters of steel glass,Light pouring from steel dome in a pool.Fan sounds feeling thoughts in its whir.A cloth bag had dark worries at bottom.A bird flew from our nest in a window.A person disappeared from glass-pane.The watchman belched from his hand.His pockets were full of night sounds.Our meaning jumps from thing to thing.Under a silken veil of soft fluorescence.A rain that hides mud-houses in moths.
87Some twigs that bird-fall from branchesA night with no sounds of song in windA scooter that kicked its innards to life.
88The lake that was seaThe lake went unnecessarily emotionalIn the shadows of the banyan and menSitting on the rails of its embankmentWho looked like birds flying on the sea.Its ripples pretended to be ocean-waves.The trees waved knowingly on the rimTheir green hairs eating up the blue sky.We fished for hidden grandma stories.An auntie lent her gold in a cloth bundle.You need jewels, you jewels of women?Come to the lake and ask the lake auntieWho will lend hers to you for wedding.Remember to return them when done.You, betrayer, have not returned them?She is no more a jewel lending auntie.You can hear her sad silence in ripples .(The myth relates to the Ramappa lake , a 800-year old lake nearWarrangal in Andhra Pradesh that has remained a part of thecollective conscious of the people through such interesting mythsand folk lore in circulation in the area)
89Looking for a wordAt this time, I am looking for a wordAnd that is when I have found themWhen they come in as blood- cousinsTwice removed, I mean, not literally.They turn sad all the time, all the time;Their sadness is for unknown people.At times they assume grinning faces.They turn sad as they come to a close.Actually they are not that important,Meaning those the words are sad for.It is the language that is sad in its words,The sad language we had made our ownComing from far, in sounds of bagpipesThe bagpipes are sad, celebrating defeat.But their windy sounds are fine music.(About Indian writing in English)
91ParticlesThe night advanced in floating particlesOf tiny flowers that would fall at sun rise.Her memories floated as light particlesOf sun dust on the earth’s fallen flowers.We offer rice particles to keep her aliveIn our bellies, our throats, dusty minds.(On the fourth death anniversary of my mother)
92Seeing is deadThe master sculptor had made tonalitiesStone upon stone, of women in danceMen in beards, servants removing thornsFrom the swollen feet of soft princesses.Their cloth caps towered over dainty feet.Nubile girls danced on slender midriffsOf black tonalities, ankles high in the air.A child god’s flute was heard in soft stone.Gods lived in fading nights of a memory.The vandal’s seeing is death of immortalityThe death of artifice, the death of beauty.(Several sculpted figures can be seen in deliberate disfigurement byhistory’s vandals on the exquisite temple walls of the Ramappatemple near Warrangal in Andhra Pradesh)
93Sleep comesSleep comes when things seem to be fizzling down,Like late night line drawings, just over a soft pillowIn a fuzz of thoughts, their outlines vaguely formed,As the air slowly turns heavy with cavernous yawns.Sleep is when a red of white forms in our glassy eyesInto a mess of capillaries supplying blood to seeing,To dreaming in a sleep of time, in a sleep of thought.Sleeping is body in a merger in the blue of the skyInto a sky of nothing that rises above the apartment,On the roof , by the water tank, listening to its water.
94Stone maidens of Ramappa templeThese stone maidens turn you to stoneIf you stare at them too long, in the sun.Their bodies are badly stuck in the wall,They lean forward in the sky of the daySeen by creatures that are still not dust.At night they come out of the moonlightFor hopscotch in the chalk-lines of the sky.Then they come out in groups and danceTo nobody’s pleasure except god-husbandsWho became stardust in the sky long ago.Their sculptor-father is a chisel’s dust,From the father sculptor of all-time sky.His dust is not seen by men, not yet dust.(About the exquisite sculptures of idealized female beauty on thetemple walls of Ramappa Gudi ,near Warrangal in Andhra Pradesh)
95Naming the childName filling is after our pleasure takingAnd body giving, from a rubber umbilicusStrapped to a golden lotus, from whereThe Creator would spring with his wifeHighly educated, feminist in approach.The lotus-seated god is duly hen-peckedBy a goddess of learning, his own alphabetOn our brows in disarray, in strange scriptUndecipherable in far too many words.The navel springing the lotus shall maintainThe creation products with brilliant learning,Including femininity of luscious apple eatingAnd why not, in a world of devious serpents.The lotus-springing god shall have his feetPressed gently, for walking fatigue, by wife,Without his ever walking in the sky-clouds.He keeps the world going by wife’s wealthAnd his own health on a serpent mattressWith an arching serpent hood for umbrella.
96PricesThe fish are mostly in the lakeSometimes, found by the lakeLumped with random friendsThey do not set their own prices.Stomachs decide how much.They are later buried in them.Stomachs do not set own prices.They are later buried.
97Flowers that make my window gladThree or four white flowers in a window skyDemolishing curtains will surely gladden glassWith a tiny button rose to button up experienceOf a heaving chest, full of old age, death fears.Fears growl in the malfeasance of flesh organsIt is their dirty smell of decomposition in bonesIn the phenyl smell of a dying hospital, flowersSmelling like formaldehyde, of sickening tubesThose carry dirty water to be emptied for money.But the white flowers shall gladden my window yet.My clothes shall smell of wilted flowers in pocket.I shall keep fears on hold, this side of the windowUnder a table light that reads nice smelling wordsRemembering parijat flowers waiting on the earth,Their faces down , feet up, at the crack of dawn.
98WorkI have always work to do when I sit aloneWith the passions of neurons in high fever.Sometimes the blood runs up bloody tubesSending waves that rise at midnight moons.There is serendipity, a fortuitous discoveryA mere possibility of a chance stumble-uponBy a machine perpetually in fear of stopping.I work on words for serendipity, discoveriesIn the random and derive existence from them.That is the way I keep the machine running.
99A child’s birthdayThe old poet looks from his thoughtful eyesAt the blue and white baby birthday balloonsStuck like hearts to the roof, helpless on roofAs they had gone up from children’s mouths.Then the children remember future birthdaysOf white cream on knowingly smiling faces.Their parents are high on hot lentil soup amongRags of unprovoked conversations of no ends,Only tassels, shreds of silk, golden embroidered.They will, back at home, cull the gold from themIn their sleep and melt them to increase riches.
100SoliloquiesEvenings are good time for free frank talkWhen our mind is full and our tired bodyEchoes with incidents, day’s happeningsWith a belly down there, loudly cheering.Our soliloquies occur then, breaking silencesIn loud exclamations, puzzled question marks,Wild hand gestures, vague finger- pointingsIn vivid figures of speech, in pure blank verse.My own soliloquies clash with the sparrow’sAnd at times with the nodding wall lizard’sWhen it crouches in pure love for its insectAnd quickly darts back to safety of roof-lightWith the love-act smack on its happy lips.”kitta, kitta”, it soliloquizes, quite solemnly.That is when the sparrow too soliloquizes.Actually it is talking with its own alter egoIn the mirror, alleging brazen plagiarizingOf its poise and beauty, its melody of song.There seems no reply from the mirror’s sideSo its verbal outpourings remain soliloquies.
102Dark circlesDark circles do not mean refusal to beauty-sleepOr long years of skin, into eternity of same place.The circles are ever expanding, from outer ring.The centre is holding contrarian views from eyesNot seeing eye to eye, they have circular runs to do.There are holes behind eyes, their circles hiding them.Fathers do not see them, when they first sketch themAnd as the lines proceed apace,the circles take shape.When they are noticed it is always late, always late.The holes behind them are bottomless quarry-holesWhere darkness rules like the night cricket in bush;A stone’s drop in it will not even be acknowledged.
103Dust mitesThey had come before us, in our heads of hair,Our flat backs with or without bony vertebraeDust they are and our future dust they embraceUnder flowers of our pillows, in sleep-softnessWhen we turn at night they turn in dusty waysAt us, in our bloodstream, in the fever of nightsOur inside fights, not knowing enemy within.Let us get them inside out, in bedroom antics,Carry on relentless pillow-fight, on way to dust.
104WallA little white wall stood between usOf indifference, from our both sides.Only the tree knew our day, our lives,Comparing them meticulously above.We could finally break its whitenessOnly to confront an indifferent wind.
105MiracleThe sky is still gray, over the mountains,Trees still in their leaves, not a whistle.Our child shall be born anew, our miracle,The birth from a deep night, night’s child.The folds of the hills held it in their wind,In haunting fragrance of thorny flowersOn the side of the mud-track, in furrowsOf rice fields, with wet feet of our women.The hills waited expectantly and the cowsIn their return, in the dust of their hoofs.Let us get a peacock feather for his headA little blue of the sky for his over-wear.But the sky is still gray with shades of rainAnd the peacock is dizzy in its rain-danceWaiting for its own miracle on a gray sky.
106The first flowerThe first flower is fixed in my sky, waving in wind.Its white fragrance is mine alone in its blue space,The wind I do not own, but here this balcony I ownIn bricks and cement, in sand from river’s holes.The flower is mine for claim to neighborsAnd the squirrel that passes by, whoever.When it dies and falls, I alone shall mourn.
107Words for treesI do not have any words for trees, in my throatI know them in throat, by astringency of fruit,By disgust on tongue of caterpillars on themIn ironic glow as creatures of beauty of futureTheir projected butterfly stature in the next sky,By leaves falling one by one in October windLike snow in December of higher Himalayas.I call them trees, even if they stand there aloneIt is in their plurality they turn colored butterfliesWhen they are up and about, alone, in bunches,Their lady-like cackle heard from jungle peacocksAs they raise blue heads from bushes under them.
108LightMorning is pure light, on coffee and paperA song in light raises head softly in the eastOn the high place where god sits with treesIn his loin cloth and a fixed stare at the wall.The rain flies shall begin life’s journey nowAs light first reddens trees, makes them blushOf god on their leaves, in their golden splendorTheir green then mixing in gold from the east.Light fills our chests, our sleeves, our hair,In loose strands of a girl’s hair on the roadWhere electricity flowed at their fiery tips,A song on her lips lacking, but felt in breeze.The girl’s hands flowed as water from hills.Their music filled trees with leaves of blush.
109Figures of our speechAll the world’s layers are in our throats,Hoarse with words, spoken way too oftenWith proper emphasis, some letters saidWith our teeth pressed and eyes closed.Our fingers are clenched for good effect.Our body is distorted with much emotion.Let us, for a change, feel the damn thing,Before words, without flourishes of writing.We say the cap on our head sports a knotThat looks like a ruined temple on the hill,Specially when in silhouette against sunset.As if our saying makes it larger than seeing.The knot on cap is a mess of wool that bearsNot even a flimsy likeness to ruined temples.
110The sea of imagesThis crowd of images will not leave us in blood.Its voices fill our minds like morning squatters,As one din, rising to the sky ,when on the beachAmong tall trees waving good bye across the seas.These trees crowd all our spaces near our feetAnd in the folds of our minds, musically flowingWhen tall ships blow their steam-horns at them.It is one vast sea of images, in waters and brine.The boat goes up and down on the morning sky.A plastic rope holds it in place, its green strandsTying lives, in strange places, in shadow and lightOf fish in men, fire in women, smoke in old men.Black bodies rise high in froth at the sea’s mouth.Tiny tentacles burrow holes in its brown wet sand.They tickle your feet and question your foot space.The sea swallows us all, including our old shadows.
111AuthenticityI am often confronted by a feelingOf lack of authenticity, in this river,Of not feeling like a subject, spuriousAgainst mountains that sit in the farWith river waters beating on my ears.I am words from vaporous thoughts,A prose-poem thought in dark nooksOf the mind, mining word after word.The mountains belong to the earth.I, waving in breeze, am a mere babyA cry-baby in quick mountain wind,Flying words against its rock solidityIn its flowing wind and night silence.The mountains are authentic in spaceWith river about me, in daily ripples.They had come here much before meWith the waters from skies, daily sun.I exist here in the river, as a thoughtA passing thought of a real mountain,A thought in river, a temporary rock.
112Climate changeWe spoke all our recent dialogues nicelyVoicing apprehension of the big change.Our struggle had continued underneath.It was a monotone speech in a gray skyWhen the line of trees came to a freezeIn their hostility, where they stood tall.The gentle summer breeze did not matter.The trees sniffed autumn and looked away.Emaciated street dogs barked incessantly,At hooded strangers coming at us from hillsFrom the edge of the sky, in clouds of dust.Our dialogues went on in our dark robesAs our culture bristled riskily in our back,The culture of reality, in our failed heartsWhere several realities came up togetherNot as a single earth-reality in silk threadBut a failed reality of a fluid mind-stateA sky of treeless vapour, sea of flake-salt.
113MetaphorsWe are nowadays happy with our new doorA membrane bathroom door that now shedsA certain mauve hue on baths, while in song,With the shower flowering on our cool backsStreaming as if from a rock skirted by treesIts vapors swirling like their winter breaths.Our song is under breath, in some mutters.Our vapors are on glass that hides in smokeOur rather banal faces, their jejune laughter.We are, in fact, searching for our metaphors,Being upbeat about our recent turns of phrase.
114Phony visionI do not know if the thing is phonyGlass-like, with glistening dew-dropsOf a morning vision on windshield,Pearl-glass that breaks in little coinsOn endless highways, on mild impactOf metallic bodies with drunk men.Some cars have steam on bonnetsLike bees, in spring, on the stone.Our vision is partly crowded, you seeWith birds hiding dust in the eastThat has turned orange at sunriseA phony vision, it is partly clouded.On the highway there are no housesOnly string cots for our dream sleepOn glasses of buttermilk, hot breads.We have whites on our mustachesOf too much buttermilk in throats.You crinkle eyes enough and you will seeWet buffaloes calmly chewing their cudIn tin sheds that jump out of green fieldsTheir milk sloshing in their pink udders.
115Luckily their tail-flies and smells fly awayInto tree-tops, waking the morning birds,A phony vision indeed, partly clouded.The sunflower beds have darker kidsThat smile nicely of a little alphabet,Like flowers that turned deep inwardWhen the sun went behind the hills.Their little bees have nowhere to go,Wait; let the sun come from the hills.The village school is closed for todayIn honor of the guests on the string cotThe sunflowers will open with the windAnd the shadows will creep up slowlyBehind the buffaloes, with eyes closedTheir mandibles moving up and down.The vision is clouded, a phony visionCaused by much emotion in the eyes.
116ScreamIn the bone house it would appearThe lower mandibles were stretchingAnd stretching to produce a screamThat would fail to reach down to ears.Actually they were trying to bite sarcasm,Surely a futile endeavor, especiallyThey do not have tongues in cheeks.
117HolesWe are talking of holes, mere lack of matterSubsisting in matter and surrounded by itOf words that exist in crevices of thoughts,Words making the world’s holes in whole.My dead are matter in lack of it, globe-earthsThose spin in lack of space, in crisp night air.They spin in the space of time, holes in space,Phosphorus glow-worms roaming thin nights.They are holes in space, where they had lived.They are now words that will live in thoughts,Those remain in my mind, as images of realityTill I become a hole in space, a picture, a word.
118Children in the rainWe wanted clearly laid out pathsBetween thin strands of July rain.Our faces were drowned in hoodsAs the rain fell softly on our heads.Its sounds came as from the ocean.Our puny judgments took a beatingIn such a steady patter on our earsWhere they seem to be beating usLike angry fathers, back from office.As we walked we made tiny circlesIn rain water, under our umbrellasThat saved us from an angry sky.The houses were a blur in white.Our paths ended in green of trees.Rain-mud spattered on black coatsSurprised by blurs of passing cars,Their wipers saying no to the rain.We had left our school in the street.Our home of angry smoking fathersAnd soft grannies in loving egg-headsSeemed to vanish in the fuzzy rain.
119A scruffy dog shook its body of rain.Back at home, we bath our wet bodiesIn eucalyptus steam, as its vapors riseQuickly to drown the rain in its smell.
120BridgeWe had passed the bridge spanning a river of sandAt dawn, when our noisy train spoke to its emptiness.Once out of it, the train was bending like a centipedeAnd we took a long backward glance to see the bridgeNow smarting under noise injury on its deaf,deaf ears.The buffalos on its sand-bed looked up, unmindfulOf the bridge, of the noisy train that passed, and of usIn the train that saw them as mere globs on the sand.Their black bodies longed for green puddles of water.Their eyes seemed vacant, as their tails swished flies.We saw they had not even once met us in our eyes.
121The temple of shadowsMen and women live here with stonesTheir shadows live with them in daylight.The shadow phalluses of shadowy godsLive in the musty smells of kings in silksTheir soldiers in attendance on swords.Women have their foreheads on red dots.Priests move throats up, down like birds.Their prayers fly like shadows to the sky,Their hungry stomachs touch their backsWhere they produce shrill incantations.Here god is crying inside, in the shadow.Beauty is hunger in distended stomachsDrunk with soft palm wine from the sky.
1The year-endOur change will happen not at the midnightOf cakes and candles,loud claps and crackersBut in doorways, each time we pass themLike ghosts, room to room, under flowersDelicately painted on their frames on yellow.The doorway is not inside nor there in spaceBut just hanging on time, as we hop and skipHolding our hems from paint sticking to them.The year-end is a doorway that will disappearin the dusty lane and in the dust we cant recallWhat ghosts we were in the room left behind.
2Green inspirationYou may ask what is it that breeds poetryFrom nocturnal thought, a green inspirationFrom decay, a smell of infestation and deathAs you now turn around , excessively awareOf a role soon coming to an end on the stage,While the green room there is still gaping openWith dress-clothes, a paint drying in its tubes.Our scripted dialogues point to our roles endA green grease-paint never to be put on againA director and prompter dead in their tracks.We still have our green faces grotesquely moving.Their brows are still dancing of love and death.Can we come back to make one last show please,Before we can finally go back to our backwatersIn our snake-boats of grotesquely paddling oarsAll asynchronously moving towards somewhere.
3LightThis evening light is deeply intriguingIn its speckles, on parapet walls at dusk.People seem stretched as long shadowsStuffed with emptiness, uni-dimensionalAnd asking for a little glory on the floor.The parapet walls, set in rarefied dusk air,Stand, stripped of the gone time, bit by bit,As yellow light deepens their historys hues .The rocks , duly red and dead, pay lip serviceTo mothers of ancient discovery in kitschyLetters of round frames and square thought.Several suns ago ,when men were not shadows,Women in zenana came to pray in the mosques.Their shrouds looked like veils of light on rocksAs their naked feet descended the stone steps.(An evening at the Golconda fort)
4ColorsWe believed colors mainly made our lifeSuch as the soft Asian paints of RoyaleOf a silky touch, all smudges wiped off.The tea was just great color on white shirtThat could be wiped off by a daub of surf.The children played in mud, a great colorBut mother could do anything for colors.Mothers eyes can now see only a uni-colorIn the dusks shadows of dancing coconutsWaiting for her night to remove all smudges.Due to lack of color, her cheeks often burstWith colorless marbles of clattering words.The kids expertly push marbles into holesTheir index fingers aching like strung bowsBelow a window, with an overlooking uncle.Luckily no holes are missed, of color or no.Wordy marbles finally fall into their holes.Some points are missed in color confusion.
5The spectacle caseA plastic with soft contours , it staresAt my eyes ,balefully from its existence,Its pride, outcome of seeing too much.Eyes are love , drooping an egos fallOn the pillar of a nose, with two extraEyes seeming duplication but not so.Custodian of seeing ,often a little proud,It encases glasses roundly, just in case,Luckily not making a spectacle of itself.
6WomanIn my rhetoric I forgot the deathIn the throat, a vanishing deathIn the smallness of night hoursAs all is forgot, as not belonging,A bundle of clothes left behindA knot of a loin-string in the darkThe death of life, slowly whistlingFrom dusty trees of mountains.I forgot all the untouchable daysOf passing by a houses side-laneWith a bundle of clothes in armsTo a well of waters in the backyardUnder trees of concurrent shadowsIn a series as they went in the day.I forgot my squatting in the verandaWhile accosting everyones deathOn a passing road of sun and ash.Then my touch was death and loveIn the smallness of my girl-breasts.I quickly went woman-dead in shame.Later I forgot death in my stomachA bloody bundle of woman-shame,As a mere shriek that never came.
7In rhetoric I forget my dying shriekThat has failed to rise from my throatAs a vanishing death, a footfall awayIn the smallness of my night hours.
8Mud-piesAll the genuine, deep delight of life is in showing people themud-pies you have made; and life is at its best when we confidinglyrecommend our mud-pies to each other’s sympatheticconsideration. ~ J. M. ThorburnWe made our mud-pies well before dawn.Our delight is in the very numbers of eyesHalf-pie eyes turning in light from insideTheir lids not falling yet , into the abyss.We make mud-pies for each others view.Their soft roundness is delight to our eyesAnd a deep joy to feel to our gnarled fingers.Your roundness of pies is a smooth joy tooAnd is highly recommended for neighbors.After we go, please do not forget to viewOur pies slapped on the citys broken wallsAmid hurried graffiti , bits of cinema postersWell before they flake off of excessive sun.
9The Golconda fortStone is to heart as sun is to cloudWarm and golden in after-momentsGently touching, mere finger- feelingSoftness of texture, hardness of sun.History is full with stones and clouds.Mens shadows in time, wives in towWith stones in hearts, soft and warmFlit about as historys ghosts at dusk.Silk dupattas fly about as white clouds.The eyes were stones in their sorrows.The eyes were Golcondas diamondsTraded in heaps in historys marketsUnder rows of stones, arches of time.The sultans made mosques for them.When there was no beauty left at nightThere was a God in the Western sky.These stones are blood flowing in hearts.Their sounds fly across in space in claps.A matchstick is not a flame but a soundA sound in time, a mere flame in thought .
10WallThe wall is to the street of midnight,A bit of the night, a tiny world, a dogWith a nightly bark in its loud throat.It is to scraps of men, to birds in sleepOn the distant branches, their chicksWarm to the twigs, feathers in making.The wall is to real poetry of the night,Fears of decay, opening in a windowNothing but a hole in wall for escape.The wall exists because and for escapeBecause you cannot climb emptiness.The wall is curtain to dark from lightA hole for escape, a climb with a legA scrape of skin, escape from itself,A burst from body, its walls paintedOn the outer of inner rushing rivers .The wall contains a monsoon burst.
11ButtonsI have wanted to wear the unworn shirtAlways put behind, for a missing button.It seems the time has come to take it outInspect and put it back again in the closet.The button is a mere rose, not appearingIn early dawn, in rows of reds and yellowsPulsing like some tiny hearts, baby heartsFull of love and gurgle, saliva on wet lips.The button is a busy womans lady fingersNot appearing from a coffee not yet made,Its magic not woven on a shirt of buttons.The button is babys missing tooth of laugh.It is a missing son from the dark of a room,A missing dream from a crying moms sleep,A missing button from her long train journeyA whole missing shirt of no missing buttons.
12LampThe lamp spoke softly to mild nightLike an insect in a dusks soft lightA paper light ,squirting in its onionSkinned paper, gold and breaking,Crackling softly in dancing breeze.The waiters wore tiny insects of lips.They brought brass pots for wash,Yellow receptacles of a lamp light.The yellow wall had a flushed lampEmbedded like mirror in deep wood.As we clicked girl stirred like a lampA flickering lamp in the wind of river,A hand that vanished in its outlinesEyes that blinked like lamp in breezeA cloth that spilled on strands of hair.The lamp was old oil in metal black.A yellow wall took its falling shadow.The shadow smelled of a dying lampOf a decayed night, a hair in templesPartly graying of a growing wisdomTo a growing death in yellow leaves.
13NorthWe would dream of the North when coldIcy and frozen around its tree and flower,The mountains aching with pure silver.Up there the men moved about in stoles.Old men in buckets on young shouldersMuttered god-god-god under icy breathes.It seemed God was made of ice in a cave.We had played with waves in childhoodAnd sea-pebbles in teens like marbles.The waves came from a bottom of SouthAnd pebbles from storied monkey-soldiersWho floated them on choppy salt waters.We ate rice topped with grated coconuts.Our gods lay in stony slumber in flowers.But we had always dreamed of the NorthOf rivers where corpses floated like stonesAnd burnt in acrid blue smoke on the banks.The waters would flow with bright marigoldsAs life unfolded each day on a new death .We made fine round rice balls for our dead.
14RhetoricWe wanted our bodies to be more than stuffCertain airy things floating on fluffy cloudsWith a stringed instrument slung on shouldersChipping away at time, filling night with song.The bodies spoke rhetoric in the most retro wayAs if they were gods wearing unstitched clothesAnd marigolds on torsos, signifying something..Are we not more than stuff, we rhetorically askedAs the imaginary crowd shouted yes in their silenceAmid claps of spiritual hands, in the way of birdsFluttering in sleep in the lonely trees of midnight.How are you ,they asked and fine, we are dying.So are you, we said rhetorically to empty space.Actually we do not wear anything in such space.These marigolds signify nothing , just rhetoric.
15Beauty and the beastIn that city they have tamed all their lionsAnd similar other beasts from their loins.They have here a wedding to make for son.The wedding shall be quiet and subduedA display of drape and some glitter of gold.The sons pick up resplendent Pacific bridesWith their moms of widowed sorrows in eyes.Sorrows are like our own, like floods in rivers.Their women make other womens happinessIn several other islands with their own beasts.Here in this hall is our own local happiness.Our beasts are in check, cept on some daysWhen they rise from dark lairs of quietude.The woman there has her blue beauty-raysExpertly trained on the volcano in stomach.Happiness is rounded off with apricot desert.
16The haystackWe could make hay while our sun still shoneBut the needles of sun-rays are lost in the stack.Our body is not skin-deep, surely in this dermis.A syringe stuck in it will not easily find a needle.Kandinsky found his needle at Monets Giverny*But not the yellow haystack spreading about it.His rising sun shone brightly on such needles.But the stacks were lost in indistinct impressions.Our body remains a haystack of cumulated sunIts needles lost in painterly state of impressions.The body could be a haystack or even a horseThe horse is an illusion that has earlier boltedInto the savannas, into grasses that left no hay.Look, the sun seems already setting in the hills.The haystack would soon be gone like the horse.(Reference is to Wassily Kandinskys epiphany about Monetspainting Haystacks at Giverny, he saw in a Moscow exhibition of theFrench impressionists paintings)
17The inventoryThis my stuff is all over my yard, in the hollows of mindUnder an expanding sky, with the dusty trees nodding.In the train it is all over my seat, under it, and above me,As an inventory of stars twinkles from the sky to the train.A singing boy , his eyes blinking in blindness, has pearlyOyster shells for announcing his eye-wildness and music.His inventory is a whole repertoire of heart rending songs.I cannot keep inventory of the contents of the night sky,Only what I can pick up from the weekly bazaar and shop,And what numbers save up for me in a far off cheese land .But the many-digit numbers are so difficult to memorizeI forget them on the foggy night , when I fuck off from here.
18The momentThe moment now seems difficult to color-codeOn an undistinguished night of gray monotony,As the eyes turned quickly away in pearl- whites.The moment now seems all that had happenedAround the frothy waves of an unspoken truthA truth from nowhere,a chaos stirring in the windA frozen mind fizzling down like a tiny snow-flake .The doctor has put the time at about three a.m.
19EmbraceWhenever we do not agree, we embraceLack of agreement, like we do the nightWhen we cannot agree on sleep of birds.The birds keep awake through the nightKeeping an eye on our misdemeanors.We keep awake keeping an eye on theirs.We sleep embracing pillows in folded legs.Attention! we cry in our sheets, those days.We pretend we like them on their backsBut in their embrace we make our facesUgly enough to look in mirrors, noses up.We embrace smoke from the backs of cars.That way tear gas works perfectly in ducts.We embrace our evenings of empty chatter.We embrace rain, praising our god in deathAnd bodies going up in a blue wood smoke.We embrace absence, bodies turning ideas.
20The rope of fireA man sits in a tiny kiosk like a bird chickConfined to a roosting nest, reaching outOnly for worms in its triangular baby beak.A turban he wears and a red hue on his lipsWith the tongued accent of a riverside cityWhere you go to die to live for ever in heaven.A white stuff on leaves makes clients redderIn dancing mouths with a gluey paste on leaf.All they need is a white stick of fire in mouthsTo keep their business going, at constant debt.The man has a coconut rope with a fiery endTied to an electric pole, burning slowly like debt.Its fire is enough to light white sticks all night.No need to see faces by the light of a match.
21PetsIt is difficult to find words for moist loveThey all stop at the underside of a throatLike a warm liquid moving like a caravanIn a desert of inside, stopping for a drink.We have these six pets for our private loveWe return from our journeys to feed themAnd resume our journeys in wind and rain.Their throats come alive with echo sounds,Like big dogs tugging at morning leashes.Our pets rise early morning without the sun,After a night of barking at a black darknessIn eerie sounds of wind and rain on the roof.We love them enough to come back to feedAnd stroke their manes in love like our kids.We sometimes wonder who will feed themWhen rain will intensify amid wind and galeAnd we will never be able to return to feed.(The six pets are the six passions- lust, anger, greed, pride,infatuation, jealousy, called arishadvargas in the Hindu theology,much like the Seven Deadly Sins of Christianity)
22I.C.UIt is surely a retro thing to begin withFirst in the nether of body and laterIn the text, a withdrawal , an absenceThat flowed down from failure at top.As liquid tubes crawl freely all aroundIt is nice to feel brown and retro about it.Being here in the ICU is a warm feelingA getting back to your mothers wombA regression to the emerald ocean-bedWhere all seemed well that began well,As a tailed tadpole with no accountabilityFor the damned world that was going onBehind your back where men walkedAs if they had it on their weighty backs,A vintage feel born of ancient wisdom.(I.C.U .is the Intensive Critical Unit of a hospital where criticalpatients are kept under observation)
23ForgetfulnessA little forgetfulness will go a long wayA frost-bound paradise is not far away.It is somewhere in the vast wild wastesIts tree birds buried under sheets of ice.A path opens up for cloaked strangersLooking back at the horizon for progress.Now let us forget where we are headed.Let us call a picture dirty and its womenIn fleshy cleavages that fall over drapes.Let us forget their angst, their belly fearsOf fetuses,of known genders of machines.Let us generate a wealth of wiggles, giggles,Addressed to the beast in our underarmsHid under rolls of perfumed forgetfulness.Our forgetting is a hole in our throbbing,A forgiveness ,a sandal paste on our throatIn a throwback to more forgettable timesWhen death ended up a hole in icy wastesAnd a December ice would cover its tracks.
24The hospitalThe hospital is a warm space, a pearl-white placeOf healed wounds, buzzing flies and white legs.The wounds come here for a warm breeze to blowFrom loving mouths, from hanging tails in necksFrom quick beating chests of knowledge and love.The hospital has turned a warm and a fiery placeIts white light now licked by purple tongues of fire,Its efficient silence shattered by loud dying sounds.(Two days ago, in Kolkata, a massive fire started by an electricalshort circuit killed eighty five patients of the Amri hospital)
25My bodyI empathized with my sleeping body in the nightWhen at midnight a pup yowled on the blacknessOf the world, from the cold of a winter basement.As my mind was my factotum for sundry workIt had the onerous job of keeping the pup away.The factotum was unable to keep the pup away .I now had the burden of a mum that was absentThat had left its pups to the dark of a midnight.But, sir, the mind is not mothers keeper nor pups.Come to think of it, it is not even my bodys keeper.
26HazeHalf-awake from nap I look at a vitreous worldTaking in its sun shades and quiet fluorescence,Its shadows on the bathroom doors that sneakedThrough windows,in fours and twos, in diagonals.The world is now a mirror that reflects my sleep,A blue-white kitchen with golden outlines of cooks,A silver mirror of a dining table, reflecting clothesHanging, through tinted window glasses, in breeze,A light that reflects my deep- within sounds of earsA steady hum of in-vertigo, waves lapping on walls.
27ImmortalityWe were looking for a fine movie for our worn out mindsHanging selves, drooping shoulders, head held forwardIn our hands, tired of the music of flesh and short years.Our stills were to be sweet sickly music of flowing years.This man sings because he has to sing for our happinessThe other man plays as he cannot but play a happy drumBut they are driven out by villagers due to their bad musicTogether they would sing and play drum as listener turnsA stone of flesh, a standing stone with no moving fingers.Only ghosts do not turn into stone, being eerie in music.Nor crooked magicians who can make you twenty-youngerBut cannot become immortal due to their greed for stonesIf only one turned a stone by music and remained that way.(Watching a classic Bengali movie : Goopi Bagha Fire Elo (1991)
28A jokeA joke is what we have come to, a body in a jokeFull of subtle humor, engaging of mind and heartWe shake of our jokes in splutters of our bodies.On Sunday evenings, as our Monday approaches,Our carnal humor turns a hard to crack punchline.Flesh on the evening , some hanging out bodiesDo hardly provide humor to our sarcastic minds.Our stomachs are flesh bags floating with ideas.So we lie in the hall in a glass casket of mourning;Wait for a last joke to be performed on our bodies.
29Three women and a manOne was his proximate cause, the otherA mere co-cause for the yet other one.He a line that pierced the three circlesFades away at the high end of the wallClimbing to stay up all night in the tree.The three circles stay drawn in spaceBut the line has already gone beyond.It was not a path through three circlesOnly a point that moved to the other side.
30The glass casketHe had risen in air, to the roof and sky aboveFrom a lumpen body , a mind like crackling paperA sleeping giant of ego, a make-believer of worldMother-dependent and woman- loved by a wifeFrom a certain race whose ancestors had comeFrom the far seas, in skull-caps, worshiping fire.He lay sprawled in the hall in a glass casketLike historys old bodies ,under mummificationHe might have studied , in his younger days,Waiting to be unraveled for future mysteries.He will commune with a crackling fire under treesFollowing wifes ancient custom of fire-worshipAnd would embrace it in deference and faith.His dust may not flow with his own faiths river.
31Morning was star newsAs the winter sun had woke up to a reddened eastThe crow announced an unwanted guest at home.The bird brought some bad news, the fait accompliOf a death that had taken place as an extended sleepJust a dream the dreamer never woke up to recount.It was in early morning that death came knocking,The vanishing of a father and a son into the nightA night of stars he had pointed to daughter, mother,As a bad astronomer who had got his Mars wrongIn a cluster of stars flickering on a moonless night.Pointing to stars are the loving fathers of daughters.Their dreams shall go on uninterrupted in the stars.
32OblivionHaving written a note and your power vanishesIt hurts much to see it go into oblivion, much .But you have a belly-feeling of clenched teethWhen you know it is space debris condemned toRoam around for eternity in the vast wild wastesAs some ungainly stubs of unfinished word magic.English is not much for going to oblivion with.Or taking it home in the pockets like trinkets.English lets you remain suspended in time likeBrass pieces ,taken out out for family reunionsPerfectly useless for paying off long time debts.Oblivion is a nice touristy place like icy wastesWhere you go to sled in winter with laughing menBut may not return except as a chance discoveryYears later ,as cryogenically preserved matter.
33The morning ragaThe todi raga enfolds a benign oval faceRecollected, with images from rice fieldsFrom where it went to the river of bearsThe bears that came nightly from hillsFor sugarcane , of a ceremony of deathA banana leaf of rice, a jack fruits curryAn oval face that laughed in black teethA barber stubble on a two day old face.The todi now cries death, descent to riverOf bears,as it quickens on a drum of skin.Quickly the face will clash with end-notesAs raga dies for the next one, for evening.(Recollections through a todi raga , a morning raga being played )
34WordsIt seems words do make up for lifeWhenever it lacks a sense of beingAs objects are lost in continuum.Words are mere thingies like bodiesThat vaporize to make other thingsThat do not matter in the cosmosWhere the other things roam freelyAs space clutter, as if they are godsOf ancestors, from culture history.Words do flow slowly sometimesTheir own under-belly seething withMeaning, in new violence of thought,Fisticuffs into the air, several fightsAll but sound-free, as if in vacuum,Only fury signifying nothing much.But words are crow-caws at dawnThat serve to define my own dawn.
35The camera storiesWe flow here with finger music from the end of the hallIn the shadows of some potted plants on a window glassAs faces puff up with sound and fingers dance on drumsAnd new lives are made and bound together in a silk cloth,With yellow rice on heads and red glow on a bride of saree.The camera sleeps in the bag, in deep-rooted skepticismAbout plucking stories from a hall of men in plastic chairsOnly to weave them into a black night against a fans whir .
36Dogs in the nightTry guessing the time of the nightBy the tenor and texture of a bark.Dogs do not easily sleep at night,Like stick tapping Nepali watchmenPacing up and down on the streetAlerting of thieves in burgling holes.The dogs have a duty to do for night.They are of night, when not chasingShadows of cars with silks in luxuryTurning at the street corner at dusk.You can guess the time of the nightBy the depth barks pierce the night .
37VertigoIn the night your head would turn on the pillowAnd a few mountains would rumble in emptinessAs your feet are sinking in space, from the ridgeA corner is felt , an edge slips away into your sky,In the vestibule of your inner ear, in its dark cave.Suddenly you cease to feel accountable for allThat will happen in your absence, to leave takingThat will make the blood tranquil, a subterraneanStream quietly flowing under tiny polished stonesWith your feet washed away to the distant forests.
38The dog’s barkThe dogs bark came late in the nightAlong with a motors whir and the humOf my computer into a nights old age.The trees crackled in the fallen leavesOn the floor with dog foot,a tail waggingIn the wind, afraid of nights lonelinessIts flies were yet to wake in smallness.Two wheels went about their businessSpurred on by a station going for train.The bark will come back later in the dayWhen the sun will go about its businessAnd men will drink morning coffee to readNewspapers about deaths and politicsRice and bullion ,while emptying pocketsOf the nights air , of a dogs lonely bark.The bark will then chase shadows of cars.
39The carpenterThe carpenter wants keenly to realize beautyFrom his bearded face wearing drops of liquorOn the corners of lips, with a buddy on bench,Sunday not surely being a holiday from beauty.Wood is butter, to the knife and the hacksaw.But liquor is quicker, on the body, behold and lo.Beauty is not always dead wood imitating life.Beauty lies in a shack, a thatch and a benchFrothing in brown at the top, to flies buzzingAround eyes ,the world having lost its outline.The earth and the sky become a single mass.
40Old age nonsenseWe have tried to make sense of soundsUnder the breath, the old lips tremblingWith light words , in running commentaryOn the world, reasoned out and heuristic,A verbal diarrhea they called it in laughter.We understand their force, their purport.They are time fillers, masterly previews,Words that will define their silence aheadAs they catch their breath, trying to hold it.
41GarbageThree city women went missingUnder a garbage being foraged.Their dusty death is suspected.A hand juts out in the cameraPoking directly into your eyes.Death is not fragrant ashes of incenseAnd mumbled prayers on tremulous lips .Death enters your eyes as a dust particle,As a hand that accuses, cries and sleeps.
42HopeAs we tried to work out hope we fumbledWith a machine and airwaves of the night.A tiny weedy yellow flower was popping out,Not a flower that turned its face to the sun,Only spelled a throttled hope,a snuffing outOf all we had thought, hoped for in breast.Hope ebbed away as the night thinned out.A fine nights sleep will surely re-generate itA dark tunnel that will obliterate all darknessA return to the womb to pick up lost threads.
43Painting the windowsWe are trying to paint a white windowIn a grey space, sort of hole in matterHighly apolitical and colorless in viewsOf the road, from a room of shadows.A large shadow looms on our presentOf a brown painter in daub of off-whiteIts neutral shades flowing from a body,A body that flows in a rounded femaleOf a mind recently dead of a husband.The body is framed in a window paintedOn blue sky, its essential leaves missing.A man paints a windows fluorescence,As also a widows grey shades by night.
44FaceWe pointed with index finger at the face,The face that fell silent in a room of faces.Cane chairs were all that were to be pulledBut there seemed no music of the chairsThat was playing ,only some more silence.Face is not the index of the mind, its indexBeing at the tips of eyes, where words hadFrozen at some point of time in the bathroomBefore chairs moved from place to place.We now sit and gawk in wonder at the faceIn wonder at a running face that once was,With eyes blinking behind glasses from life.We wonder at the life in eyeballs of glassits tender ego lurking in them as wet proofOf life , of animated love and responsibilityFor lifes events, under illusions of control.Our anxious chairs made no noises of faces.Their light movement betrayed no emotion,Only fear of index fingers stopping to pointAt the immobile face , bursting with the past.
45KnowledgeI say beware of the Greeks bearing giftsOf knowledge,in a poetry of unspeakableHorrors that had lifted the veil of secrecyFrom our lack of humanity, bodies rottingOf cynics in churchyard, in the trees bareAnd smoky, in morning fog of early ghosts,Hellenism of word and thought, largenessof vision, mere words, pulsating with light.Beware of Greek poetry in early science.Beware of people ruling peoples minds,Of men who wear long robes of thought,Mixing religion and politics, marrying soulWith intellect, science with exquisite artAnd barbarians masquerading as nobles.And beware of the shadows that now loomOn the acropolis, of shrunk bodies of menTheir paper monies growing in their shadowsOn trees brooding on a history of betrayals.(Greece is one of the largest shadow economiesof the world.The oligarchs are becoming fatter by the daybut the country is on the brink of bankruptcy)
46WaterOf water we shall speak into a dying nightAs water shall fill our cheeks, our templesAnd inflate our bodies and our fleshly faceAn aquatic thing of our beginning mother.Our mother was water , we emerald island.We owe our origin purely to her green aqua.The green water will soon be vaporous clouds,That shall move over the Western mountains.Marbles of words now clatter in puffed up cheeks.Our old memories guide talk in a predictive way,Like water sloshing in our cheeks, as if in parody.
47A doll’s houseHer dolls are cute and lively but fragileThey are made of crystal glass and clay.Her house is decked with plastic flowersAnd smiles made of societys approbationAnd legal scrutiny of documents , in case.You are a twittering skylark, says husbandLovingly, in strict legal terms of husbandsTwittering skylarks find life such a larkForging signature for loves compulsionsNever looked such a bad thing for love.Twittering larks know only love, no papers.What do husbands want but glass dollsIn a house decorated for parties of honor?But wives are no dolls for safe keeping.When doors are shut their slam is heardThrough the continent, across the oceans.(Reading a play A Dolls House by Henrik Ibsen)
48The reedAt rice grain dust and typha augustataBodies would quickly burst into flowers.When pin- pricked they would say that .We carry their river memories and pondAnd the slush of womens feet in JanuaryUnder a blue sky of calm faces laughingIn the water and mud, in a harvest song,And the river of typha in all its augustata,As the breeze makes its dance and floodsThe world with loves dust , in plenitude.In the meantime we go on to fight the air,As we would in the night when shadowsOverwhelmed us in sleep, in our dreams.We cannot win surely against memoriesIn blood, we have got from our old men.
49NoiseWe were talking about noises in cityOf motor cars with sounds of hornsBuzzing about like halos of insectsOn a night of rain, on road to riches.Riches are high decibels ,your roadLeading to nowhere, gold and jewelsAll lying in built-in cupboards waitingFor cat burglars to make wall holes.When holes are made in egg-shapeThey do not look at prevailing moons.Men make holes like oval ears of cavesWith secret formula for their opening.So they keep wealth in foreign vaultsWhere they do not make wall holes.But at midnight you do hear noisesOn the wall street,from tents of occupy.Their noise is drowned out by batonsAnd footfalls at midnight and clacketyOf flying machines in an empty sky.
50Re-occupyThe cops like to occupy their minds.Like the cold that is now occupyingMy body, my mind ,my throaty wordsIn morning under a nose of streamingIdeas and words , as in a steady humOf tall casuarinas overlooking the sea,As a sea wind passes in their needles.We think the cops are afraid of them.They flood their senses, mute sounds.Lift bodies from emptiness into vans.They have their own emptiness of sky.They have to occupy the space below.The cops are afraid in their bodies.They want to evict ideas from minds.And re-occupy park spaces and tentsThey want to occupy emptied minds.
51In passingSound is of passion, as drums that beat brieflyFor musical wedding at night, not morning yet.A certain tablet waits in the wings,without light.Two pups from nowhere ,balk at dark of no mum.Morning is in the waiting ,its birds still waking.The tablet is waiting for its wings, from balconyUnder the proposed tiny flowers,now just an idea.These will appear in later seasons, only hibiscusIn the brewing in the treess minds now, on pot.All was said in parenthesis, in closed whiskers.I now say it ,in main agenda, of a life being livedIn its main focus, its music a continuation ragaA fusion of soft raga-jazz, as its strange wordsCome out in sweet music, in colors of the night.
52RestIn between we rest , in our long dozing hoursDuring which we manage to watch hot bathsAnd tired steam, in stylish Jacuzzi some timesTo come back to money questions that bristleWith answers, four at a time, in knowledgeGames of old man and worshipful womenBehind keyboard ,that make screech sounds.Old man is grandfather in film stars stomachWhen not asking his four-optioned questions.We rest bodies on yellow sofas, figuring outWhat our lady will make for lovers breakfastHer doe eyes in laughter make us want more.We then rest in eyes, on televisions of laughterOur comedies growing by the hour, our music.We rest minds on businessmen heroes in suitsHorizontal in growth and story, love in brewing.Love is in the air as black Shakespearean villainsTurn up in best suits to wreck loves happiness.( A days television viewing)
53The water bottleThe water bottle has an inner life of its ownOn the table, among the people of all agesOn sunny mornings and old and young lips.Its lips are wet with a luminous passion bornOf a serious relationship with morning light.The girl takes its blue mouth to maiden lipsSoft and ruby-red, of unopened mind-secretsAnd silver laughter ringing in natures alleysA love born ,a life begun,an idea taking wing.You woman, old and grey, over several sunsWill need it for your own subliminal fantasiesWhen morning sun lights up your grey curlsAnd a glass table mirrors a white glazed bottleWater dancing inside stomach to suns music.You the poet photographer will need it badlyOn your brown lips, that have gone bone dryLooking for pearly dew-drops on morning grass,Stuff of dreams gathered in an old box of glass.
54Eighty and fiveEighty and five springs in leaf-ends laterShe still finds her life a song , a numberNot numeric, but mere music and matter.She can hear crickets music in lumberFrog-lets croaking in nights rain-puddle.In autumn years perhaps you imagineHer steeped in mixed aural sounds, in muddleA vague spectacle of death in a lifes din.In such music one hears yellow leaves crunchAs if they are the dress one wears for lunch.(sonnet)
55HousesWe make our houses in holes in the airSo our kids are safe from wind and rainAnd we are not poorer by a large amount.Actually we make them for kids not born.We had come here as soft young bridesIn silks and fragrances, in jewels of goldIn sandalwood oil and jasmines flowing.We had done our computers ,on keyboardsWhere we had typed our dreams in silk.We have often waited outside on the benchIn institutes where dreams are hard wired.Here , as our house is ready we enter itIn mists of confusion, in semantics of lossIn broken word pictures , our mirror imagesBorn in our mind, on blue screens of death.As the music flows we find ourselves floatingTo the edge of the world, away from holes.
56The full moonOn this very day of full moon , long years ago,Oil lamps of earth had flickered before a basilIn a backyard, their flames trying to reach trees,Among shadows of women with half-shut eyes .The woman who was my beginning had arrivedUnder this very moon, an oiled bundle of fleshIn a village house, among calm cows chewing cudAt the full moon, their flaccid bodies shiveringTheir leather at flies , in moony nonchalance.I am now open-ended , where I had then begun.My series now broke, backwards to the green sea.Some day I shall be open-ended at the sky end .(Remembering my departed mother on her eightieth birthday on thefull moon day of Kartik)
57DebtWe all owe a debt of gratitude for this here.In our mid-nights we fly away from bondageCrying in throats, hoarse with age and love.Money binds us, men to men, in our women.Women bind us in our men and in our doing.Our debt is a trap, a night happening thingThat leaves us befuddled, in body and state.Debt makes us feel creepy in sleeping bedsLike a thousand-legged worm of leg things.It makes our women cry leaving doors ajar,As doors will shut for the last time of night.Debt is mere words of men in vacant houses.Their hollow laughter sounds creepy by night.Debt is letters that crawl like wiggly wormsFrom brittle paper, that is fast turning to dust.
58WorshipHere I come face to face with my godThat comes to my mind, as a mere word.I squat in this little marble room of godsWith yellow rice in palms, a dot on brow.Outside the words I cannot think of himIn a sky of vapor, floating about wearingFlower garlands, with music on the body .God is a word ringing in a marble cornerOf fragrant smoke, of some white flamesSmiling in ancient clothes, in long armsOwning bows and arrows, ready for evil.Lotuses bloom in milk ponds with ripplesFrom folds of snake hood protecting himFrom rain and sun, from the winter cold.He is still a word from our wordy ancients.The words are images, pictures of thingsSorrow and lightness, recalled in thought.The words are ancient, as gods are woodStone and clay and paper,in some fine art.As we recall the words in the marble roomWe are filled with warm goodness in belly.
59CrowdThe crowd is many bodies rising in numbersUnder a coiffure that feels like a birds nest,Hatching a cute chick in winter, a bright ideaThat takes wings and flies away to far space.An idea is born ,a discovery, a tweak in timeWhose author is not crowd but common mindA buzz in a disheveled hair, a clash of mindsNot knowing ourselves, ancestors in blood.A miracle this living, this giving up the ghostWatching television in a lonely village of birth.A crowd of voices rises over a herd of cattleTo high above trees, the high years of men.A crowd of thoughts swarms in our minds alone,A crowd of moths found dead on the window-sillAfter a rainy night , hugging light in window glass.
60Sea-storiesNice to tell sea-stories , of cattle grazing in peaceOn a dipped sand beach, as a tranquil sea watches.A cluster of cactii rising in sand with a tiger’s faceSeems a plaything by prankster kids of the beachAs adults sip their Sunday beer in casuarina trees.The sea rises on both sides of sand where you stand.A ship or two looms on the horizon, with an idle boatOn the beach ,its crook dipping into a luminous sea.This dead fish on the beach a bird has yet to pick upLooks like a drop from flying beak of a passing bird.Girls of many hues enter the beach in between palmsWanting a joyous time on the Sunday beach, their earsSwelling with tales of men from plots of latest movies .Their pig-tailed shadows shake like echoing laughter.Walking the sea-beach at Kallepally, near Srikakulam (A.P.)
61StorytimeLawyers are eternal as their words hoverJust above peoples heads, buzzing aboutLike creatures of the night, rudely wokenFrom their deep slumber ,in a nasty shock.They tell their stories ,raising the specterOf thin people fighting their own shadows,Shadows fighting people, in orange lightUnder the tree,as its white birds have leftFor the distant plains,in reverse migration.Lawyers some times die fighting battlesAs justice looks imminent in taut storiesTold among tiny people huddled togetherWarming their winter palms by the fires.They are peoples stories piling on time.
62TrainIn the train there is love ,friendship, eatingAnd piling of bodies,in movement and windThe wind catching you off guard, with talesYou will squirm in your deep stomach about.Down below there is somewhere green lustFor passing by things, birds on phone wiresA gentle breeze, that ruffles a train kids hairAs it presses its face against the iron barsSmelling deep iron on its face, its old paint.In train new married wife touches chordsSteeped in smells of flowers, smell of faceAs eyes speak flowers, new friendship, faith.It is also live mother , eyes of love and rainA noisy train, wind, from sky of childhood.In the upper berth is overhanging lower skyA brown dome, hanging above with no starsBut eyes, in body that cannot change sides,Body that sleeps in dreams, of running trainWith no brown earth below but an empty airAnd some bodies deeply drowned in dreams.
63Self-portraitOn the canvas you sit languorouslyLike woman ,waiting for the skin tonesTo appear , in a soft brown jute texture.You daub a little paint to clear spaces.You now have a nose and some eyes.One two or three or more dependingOn whether you sit on haunches or standWith your back against the white wallSo your body is two-dimensional frame.A nose defines you above ruby lipsWet with eating for navel and above,Its packed contents ,inside, sealedHermetically, under minds guidance.Mind is jelly not coming on the canvasYet you can see dirty hand everywhere.The eye-brows look on the eye-holesVigilantly so the eye-balls do not get upAnd go away when nobody is noticing .You capture them live with their wet fearSo they cannot deny their existence.You are now on the canvas ,yet outside.You do not agree with your sly smile,As you are not you but somebody elseMay be, a dog in the street or a lizard
65My mom’s stoolStools are like ladies, in brown, of old wood.Their spirit endures, like that of past womenWho live beyond their existence and colorIn sons black and white memories in sleep.This one keeps awake on the cold balcony,Sniffing night air spread by the fourth moon .When you open the door to the old balconyIt makes odd affectionate sounds on the floorLike postmen pushing letters through the door.We stand on its soul to reach our light-bulbs ,Our feet terribly wobbly , but our souls stableIn an earth-sky chain that connects vast spacesAnd standing on it we often reach out to mom.
66FacebookThere is no need to read real books, when allComes inside of opening skull-plates wideYour brain operation done after head of hairRemoved , synapses located and offendingThoughts ,where painful removed, like fliesFrom the cold milk tea, left waiting in sugar.We now enjoy playing our farmville gamesExpensive plots, sold in unreal real estateWhere friends try to sell their kitchen gardenProduce of cabbages , lettuce and sproutsMind mushrooms waiting to be made soup.How we love losing our faces in the facebook!Our wisdom comes mostly in mashed formIn tiny nuggets of knowledge, nicely curatedBy shadows of friends,in a chronic finger itch.
67RoomThe room hangs with books, lickingThe shadows from the sunlit windowTheir mouths some times wide openIn wide-eyed wonder ,at white wallsWhere the trees dance in their windAnd flies buzz about in nonchalanceTheir wings several times magnified.The corners sit pretty in light shadows.Their sounds refuse to come from hush,A splendor forgot in quietness of wall.The drawers are an old chest, heavingWith pure pride of mahogany, their lightShut in an ancient time, their shadowsLong forgot under lock and key of time.The curtains are saviors from thought.The people outside enter the windowAs ghosts that glide on their textures.They are some times puppet showsAt night, feet busy walking on asphaltTheir feet shuffling, their minds shut.
68Gated communityA watchman sits at the high gate, checks pulseBefore entry,all cars entering at their own risk.On the kerb, children are careful, playing ball.Sundays we play golf in unending green spaces.We see neighbors smile from swimming pool.We had lived in holes,crawling with people.We are now in bigger holes with smaller onesInside them for morning ablutions and yoga.We have separate holes for individual men.Our holes smell nice with room freshenersMade from the private parts of civets in heat.We are a gated community, staring from gatesAt the passers-by and listless cattle droppingTheir green feces on the wet road nonchalantly.Our lawns are manicured green like our minds.We buy all our cattle droppings by kilogramsFor our green plants that have arrived like us.Thank god we are now suited ,booted and gated.
69WordIf looking for the word in the nightIn tiny eruptions of sound on darknessA word or sound makes no differenceTo light or its absence ,a mere paper.Not even a paper but a thought oneIn deep recesses, when chest beatsUnder the skin ,in vague fear of revolt.A ruled paper makes a word perfectA sticky note filed in memorys pagesAs a cough on darkness ,a soft throat,A splash of water on the earth, its airA powdered color of white on asphaltFlowers on earth dropped from a skyA word fallen from a passing pocket.If looking for other peoples wordsOn a light screen ,from early fingersWhen fingers have thoughts on tips,Words flow from a music of fingersWhen fingers play on the keyboardTheir sibilant notes on its dark nightsAs soft light pours from green domesOn a slew of words , in yellow splash.
70Moon thoughtsAt seven,we thought we had seen the moonFrom the roof, in the waving coconut leaves.Actually the chair we sat on was a blue moonInciting these moon thoughts in early nights.In point of fact the moon was just a light bulbLying on the distant roof, beyond the station.Every coconut has to have a moon in its fate.You see the moon happens as an appendageTo our coconut trees, mostly, in early nights.On a rain less night the moon rises over themAs a beauty-flower in their hair in a dark sky.At times moons are mere light bulbs hoveringOn rooftops,peacefully existing with coconuts.When they are moons, not dim-wit light bulbsThey may be broken with some moon missing.But they always stand by the listless coconutsEncouraging them with a characteristic cool.
71The death of an English teacherI came across his book on English recentlyThe way it behaved lacking commonsense.This frail teacher pouting in thin mouse-lipsHad taught us English leaving us in a dazeWhile we had sat waiting for the bell to toll.His own bell finally tolled yesterday for himAs it did then , for us , his hapless students.He had poked fun at English, spoke by a queen.Commonsense has never been its strong point.His book tickled many a funny bone, underside.His bones are now dust but their laughter will rise,
72The window-paneThe man sits in his shop with a pair of glassy eyes.He has no time to fix a see-through window-glassThat is deeply in love with the sun in our kitchen.The pane sits there tight ,basking in the suns glow .Our women love the sun but not when making tea.There are trees in the pane waving in the wind.Their birds chirp at dawn, their speckled throatsHeaving up and down, as we calmly eat breakfast.It is not winter yet ; the fog is yet to blind its eyes.Later when the sun turns angry, he will beat it downOn its smoothness of cheeks ,gate-crashing in kitchenInvading our womens privacy as they make our teaAnd the gas-flame will lose its blue face in the glare.It looks like the pane has to embrace its dark night.
73The undertowThe memory went all the way down thinkingOf the sea, remembered from its undertow.The skin has an undertow, below the dermisProtesting much about nothing, about thingsImagined like dogs running after cars in rain.The sea has an undertow like what I rememberOf years ago , a fit of passion, at the full moonWhen the pearl-white surf became almost blue.The skin blushes for nothing, no errors by bones.It is much like the sea, with a large undertow.You never know the sins lying unpunished inside.
74SymbolsLooking for symbols ,largely,in iterations of of nightWe chanced upon light that struck us in our small faceBlinding a childs understanding, where everythingWas predicative and unfailingly stood for a real thing.We now stand in rain with song on lips,in eyes of love.We stretch our palms to collect our raindrops of love.We look for life-size images, lifes burning uglinessSeveral times glossed over,in mortal fear of symbolsFading away to nothing, a grey sky stopping to rain.Our symbols are largely flesh, without it and outside it.Our mornings do not stand for anything in the window.We have thrown a few rice-flakes around from white vansIn deathly silence, where even a flower drops in sound.
75WorshipWe mostly sit to worship, with the walls opposite to usLeaving us no room for getting up and crossing the streets.In the marble our gods listen, from the shelves of flowersAnd fragrances, as if out in the garden ,in the early hoursPlucking white flowers from black darkness one by one.The walls face us with their hanging gods smiling belowA hole that lets in morning sun and some pleasant wind.Many times we lie to worship, with a false roof above usLeaving no room for getting up and flying into space above.We mostly worship under closed eyelids, our lips muttering.In sleep our gods come dressed in vintage dresses and jewelsOf exquisite beauty,their light blinding us in our closed eyes.We worship our gods in the dark caves, their bodies in stoneSprouting lotuses in navels ,where a master craftsman is born.It is he who chisels our foreheads, hiding our futures in them.
76The villageThe village sat in fields looking toward the sea.A ribbon of road passed its hill that had a holeThat looked as if it might spew smoke and fire.But it was a knowledge hole, by monks of menWith a few orange fires that smoked to the skiesIn deep-throat chants, in flowing orange robesThat tempted away wealth in refuge of the Wise.But they are now broken stones, their fires dust.The village sat on the sands of the river in summer.Its boats pretended to sail in the wind on dry bedThe river refusing to touch their bottoms in love.The river bed had black charcoal spots on its brownWhere men burned , in logs and ashes,orange once.The monsoon brought floating carcasses of cattleString cots of men in far off villages ,felled trees.The village floated water pitchers of shining metalOn the swirling waters that smelled the mountains.They drank its waters filtered with the indup seedAnd ate rice and onions, buttermilk on mustaches.In the winter bears came down from the mountainsLooking for lush sugar cane that waved in the breeze.The village slept on the fields ready with their sticksAnd shouts that rent the night air, echoing in the hills.The nights were so dark that the bears turned bushes.
77Mother’s NotesI see historys pages from life and death, diary notesBrimming with a city left, thoughts of a garden swingIn letters crawling like live ants out of them carryingSpirit messages of all things being nothings ,nothingsThat encompass us over time,in space of our house.Here is a window to noise of crackers bursting in light,Bottles that send sounds from their mouth in a dark skyDarkness that pervades the corners of the world, lightIn colored crackers,the festival of lights, a defeat of evil.It is all that is to it in earthen lamps, burning at the doorSome powder sprinkled on flames , smelling nice incenseSome fruit pieces going around celebrating light on earth.Her notes make out a hole in space, as a piece of timeA hole in eternity, a hole in mind, a gaping hole in time.Her letters crawl, rounded like black ants, out of pagesFlowing with life , with death, with my living , with hers.
78RiskOur gods are thirty million, evenly spread in the sky.Their population is ever rising in our lonely dreamsHighly incandescent, like flickering insects of lightRoaming the mountains, giant trees and lonely crags.At night, from bus windows, we see fires ragingOn mountains, lighting the sky alongside starsAs eyes are half-shut from night videos showingFilm heroes dealing with evil on one to one basisIn punches of musical sounds, in full orchestra.We have covered every possible fear in our belliesEvery possibility of snakes, ghosts, every dangerIn nook and corner, trees of canopies, glacial riversLives and deaths of ancestors, their spirits roamingThe country, lonely washer men’s ponds and potsOld tamarinds with hair shrieking in the night sky.Due to lurking dangers we are not taking chances.We have taken a census of gods of full thirty millionNot a god less, in count, covering every possibility.A 2.5% ratio to population seems a fair risk cover.
79(We are now 1200 million, but the gods of our pantheon haveremained stable at 30 million)
80SoundsSounds come from drums and pipesFrom silence ,vacated by cricketsOwls shrieks, cranes sleep-soundsMen turning in sleep, from dreams.These are wedding sounds , of joint sleepOf countless liquid nights and tear soundsFrom black-lined eyes, red noses of hurt.Sounds of two bodies sleeping and rising.
81StoriesIn the night I read a little, by the starlightGathering snippets from men on the side.It is like gleaning gold grains left on the roadAfter the highway vehicles passed on themAll through the day, till the sun would sinkWhen the farmer would collect them in bagsWith his twirled mustaches on orange fire.I flit page to page, reading the first few lines.My story is made quickly with inscrutable logicThat is close to reality, to the nature of thingsThey only make beginnings; I supply the story.All stories are the same, the way they draw outFrom the cave, through the wooded passagesTo the depths of trees, where the drums beatTo reach a crescendo and a fire burns the nightAs the stars disappear slowly in the grey skiesMaking way for a new story, a new beginning.
821949That was when there were no shirts on the backOnly glistening oils on body, anger bawling outBreath surmounting cloth, sweet sick baby smell.Wonder where it had been all along, a watery thingThat had sprung as an idea in somebodys mind.Its anxious people laughed at the undue hurryTo reach pink nipples, forget dark that had passedThe green fluid , the beginning of white memoryAs colors began, grays flowed softly from the skyA summer of light pouring in shafts of sunlight .The idea might not have sprung in someones mind.The 1949 summer might have been like any summer.
83Occupying wall streetWe propose to occupy your minds now.Please give us back our cash, keepingAll its derivatives with you, your swapsUnder your soft silken collars and caps.Give us the cash on which you had madeYour glitzy skyscrapers of sizzling moneyIn tall trade centers, in the clipped accentsOf portals of business schools constructingMathematical models of money makingOn overblown market caps of flimsy cash.We shall begin in the park, in cold tentsOverflowing to drown bankers, wizards,Who stole our money in bags of hot air.Our cash slipped through bony fingersWhile you made its structured productsCreating debt, the mud that drowned usWhile you collected cash in your bags.Keep with you your structured productsBut give us our hard cash to pay our bills,Our student debt, our wives grocery bills.Please give us back our jobs, our money
84We had made making things in factoriesIn real factories of sweat and salty tears.
85Screws looseHer screws loose and rusted she stands alone ,Jabbing fingers at men in the air in a cloudOf cement like ghosts in scaffold, wind-blownBearing wet cement up without beng loud.Men pass the cement pans up to top crewsOn bamboo stairs going up to sky dizzilyBuilding dreams all the way up with no screwsThat,in rust and loose ,have come off easily.Up there in head there is no need for screwsThe skull plates will stay inter-locked in blankLike a footballs seams or temple stones rowsOr lazing crocodiles jaws on river bank.Since her screws are loose shes never in bluesWithout screws she only has topmost views.(A sonnet)
86Not writing poemsA creepy thing, this business of not writing poems,Especially as the night is ticking away and the leavesAre not appearing to trees, as lightweight keywordsAppearing autonomously on the silence of the night.Poetry words should come as spring leaves to trees.The men occupy whole streets, walls, spaces, horizon,Men who speak different languages,each for himself,So that language is not stolen, but patented for royalty.They keep shouting into space, in the dust of a warThat should close at dusk as per the rule, before night.Not being Mahabharata ,the war will not close at dusk.They have powerful halogen lights in which to fightAnd because the language of closing is not understood.Each of them speak a different language for himselfProtected by intellectual property rights, copyrights.A creepy thing, this business of our not writing poemsEspecially ,when each of them speaks his own languageAnd poetry seems the only closing language before dusk.
87GossipThe two are on their phones about certainWoman dealing with boredom in marriageA wimp of husband stays behind curtainWith no efforts but home he would manage.She is killer by words- arrows and slingsFire in eyes that burns long after cindersHer nightly yoga , head down, sprouts wings.Her volcanic word flow nothing hinders.Her poor cook, dumb of tongue, bears guilt.The undrdog bears the cross for silvers loss.But husbands do take tongues lashes to hiltThe fall guy takes blame for infamy and loss .These women do their theater rather well.Their narratives are taut, worked to detail.( A sonnet)
88FriendsA bearded man sells white flowing shirtsDown in the street,near the four minars.There is a dazzling smile under his beard.Friends are made except in the fruit garden.The dog is barking this hour at its darknessIn the hollow of its throat,that never hadA regular leash, to tug at anybodys fingers.Dogs are our best friends sniffing our leg.We not only move in our friends circlesBut never come back to where we began.We move in our friends circles slowlyIn liquefied somnolence, sleep restingOn bellies of stale food fighting to stay.Our upper halls are flooded with friendsDrowning together in the chemical processOf eyes turning pearls for sale to rich ladiesCauterized in their early eyes of wonder.We have our many friends in high placesWith their red eyes deep-set on blaring vans.Their rich wails sing of mens puny statures.We are waiting for our eyes to turn pearls.
89IllusionFour years after her, we see this paper nowWritten in a neat scroll, a plain white paperCrawling with several upward-looking wordsOf knowledge and its absence , lack of formA lack of God in form, refutation of all formA form that existed only in words and in sea.The wind has no form as the sea takes its formAnd the teachers , her form in white clothes,A ghost of a teacher, knowledge being illusion.The sea is illusion, the wind a ghost dancing in it.The ghost is a flatness of form felt in form.The teacher is now a ghost riding the waves.The disciple is loss of form changed into fire.The paper is ant- hole crawling with wordsAbout lack of matter in matter, about absence.
90Please give us back our wingsWe live our inner lives, our words quietly dropping,Like the faucet dripping on a midnight bathroom.Our thinking comes to a head, in our young bodies.Our wise hair had gone in a ring through a windowOn to the side-walk, in company with a plastic bag.We are a cockroach that is lying curled up on the sillWaiting for a window of sun to quicken its wings.We are the 99 %, our wings being with them of 1% stillWe like to get our wings back, please, on the window- sill.
91HoroscopeWhen we looked up the horoscope, from the shelfWe thought of the body, divided into neat divisionsOf time, as it went back, precision-cut in time phasesFolded in deep shelves, as of smiling film heroinesOf yesterday’s glory, their time nicely worn on lips.Horoscopes can be back-read, in fine phases of starsRuling stars that seem to say bright things in night airWithdrawing love at a moment’s notice, in flickers.We have gone back to where it all began in the cloth,In the smell of placenta, a flickering lamp of midwifeHighly unread, in fears of love, in the shrieks of a babyIn oil, seeking oxygen in the stale wind of closed room.We then look out from the folds of our swaddle clothLooking for her who was the cause celebre of our cry.She who brought us all about is serving her timeIn flickering stars, her existence just in thought.But our horoscope is somehow tied up with hersOnly our time divisions slightly overlapping hers.The stars forsake their protégés in the last phaseWhen it all ends up on the earth, in fires at dawnWaters dried up in streams on the sandy river bed,Wind stoking the fires of trees on its orange fringe.The horoscope is now just a crackling piece of paper
92Waiting to be archived in the stars along with hers.
93ColorsIn the walk an extravagance of colors hits youAt the end of the street, blazing red in its blueAs though apartments are pretty sitting birdsOf natural hues, waiting to fly, matured wingsIn clipping, their thoughts caught up in clouds.These are holes in the air with colored clothesFluttering in balconies, women brushing teethMen out in the lower clothes hanging on knees.The only thing white about them is milk bagsThey bring from an early can-clattering shopAnd vans just in from a far off morning dust.The chickens, though white in their sitting coopsIn the chicken vans, are excited to be offloadingBut colors are missing in their thoughts of deathThe shrieks inside the van are colors of violence,The colors of meat celebrating meat in its inside.
94SummariesMy summaries are made hour to hourSo I catch the flow that will go to the seaLike a check dam on the hills, stoppingA little rain water on the ridge, for flowTo the parched city, crying want of love.I recapitulate words said from the heartIt is in the bottom, somewhere, at night.It is in its sound and music, some times,Paper-thin, crisp, spreading out in arms.Love is my summaries made of the night.Words are rain water, finding way to sea.I love to catch this love’s ineluctable flowThat comes this way to drown, a momentThat would spread its arms wide in the sky,On night’s edge, against the shrill whistleOf a brief cricket, a spider in golden sunriseA temporary lizard ticking love on the wall.
95IntervalsAfter a long interval I have come across herIn dead face book pages, calling across timeIn a birthday greeting, a canvas lying frozenIn time, in space between house and house.The intervals have to occur between times.Art is long but life is brief and has intervals.A naked female of books flits across mindBut promptly disappears in the dusty atticWhere woman stays and looks lying indecent.My art too has intervals, hungry poetry artRaised in the early hours, just before dawnJust like the fine naked book females flittingAcross past canvasses in tribute to beauty.Beauty eludes the artists with fame-hunger.But a baby in arms enhances artist’s beauty.A man increases her beauty but not art-frame.Fame-hunger fills the artist’s eyes with gleam.Naked figures do not stay all that permanentAll the space on the dusty attic of memories.It is delicious to guess what beauty flourishedIn the intervals between then and this now.
96(Recalling an association with a young fledgling artist who hastoday come back to my attention after a five year hiatus, throughface book pages)
97The little girlShe was crawling like a floor lizard last year.Now erect, she smiles and fiddles with thingsPuts them in God’s order, on dusty surfacesSetting them right like an airy angel from sky.In the corners of her eyes, she smiles a moon smileAs if she has known these things and you all alongAnd all the dark secrets behind your shirt-pockets.
99The old stoolIt is a four-legged stool made years agoAnd got colored by her who is no more.The stool she had fiercely guarded as ownAs a thing of the heart, next to the bird.The stool that would not be left behindIn house relocations, giving us body-liftTo the light-bulb, to a loft of empty thingsTo airy things of the sky and earth’s sweetWater, the elixir of life, a support to logic.It is from it we shall reach higher worldsAs it shall continue to leave us all behind.
101October poemI came to this October poem on a thinking nightWhen it was dark under a future promise of dawnAnd a gentle wind blew on dry leaves in the street.Temples made it, in stone centuries of time, spaceThat had trees to show for and old women prayingTheir eyes closed in meditation, on temple steps,When temples were yet to open for long time men.Girls danced in steps, their hands up beating space.October made the evening turn hugely on wheelsAs we went high up in the air and land, like birds.A bird chick had fallen from the nest in balcony,A question in my mind if it flew back to its motherAtop the air-conditioner unit, on its brown beauty.October rain needed to be caught in cupped palmsIn the mind’s eye, on electric screen, in silver lines.A mere camera of ephemeral fame could not do it.A poem in early dawn wet with soft rain may do it.
102ShudderLike you, Rilke, we want to shudder in our GodAs in a song, leaving much before our due partingChasing its long shadows much before the sunsetIn the smell of water in the temple, of old flowersCamphor of flames, priests locking temples awayShuddering in their throats, stomachs of god foodStones that lay dead in centuries of time, in paint.Our gods are stones, dark in the closed sanctumsOf musty old air of flowers, camphor and flames.We want to shudder in them in a plight of truthOf death possibility, carrying it on our shouldersHeavy under a God of petrified centuries on them.We want to shudder in God, all the while , dying.
103The templesWe shall recall a second life in vivid colorsWithin pillars of time, with little girls’ handsStretching for eternity, in a rhythm of waking.A dance went on in little girls, in body bends.Their hands twisted the air as if it was a flowerAs the leaves went deep green on a sunless skyAnd temples stretched out in spires of figuresOf men and women frozen in color in the sky.There were other gods in deep pits of dark timeLadies in laughing annoyances, men in strugglingFarming lives, grains coming from earth-furrows,Priests chanting words to gods listening in smokeKings hunting tigers, growling from stone godsAppearing in night dreams of temples for people.Others from far come rushing with crow-barsTo dislodge stone gods from their stone cornersThere can be no gods in others’ stones or pondsOnly gods of sand, over dunes and camel humps.Temple stones turn dust, beliefs dust, people dust.But there is thunder on crow-bars, voices booming.
104For temples to be dust flesh hearts should be stone.For, in the end both temples and hearts are dust.
105Leaving a placeIn the wild we never really leave a placeWe always walk into it, noses turned upThe bears are always crawling some placeA night place like bush in the darkness.Our white birds are always up in trees.The sea is swishing tail in the tall leavesIn its wind application, white surf foam.The sounds are soft, tranquil on the ears.Midnight place disappears slowly in stepsGently sloping, hedged by a wall of trees.Our place is always midnight or morningOr some place else before or after deathOr in going, looking back at going place.The market sounds are place we leave.The crowd is place over their still heads.From the sea memorial, a crow is placeWe leave looking at the shoreline in sea.Our light is place in the room we classifyAnd ossify in memory, a memory placeBare of bones, fleshly existence in placeA bone marrow in a far someone’s place.Cells are place in bone, lumps in mindMind is place we leave, we look back onAgainst the wall of trees, against steps
106That slope downward to fragrant trees.Our poems are place in the table lightNear the soft window of Basel and roseBird chicks are place in air-conditioner.Their mothers are place for grass bladesWe classify in the balcony sky of clothes.Our fathers leave our time on balconyOur longtime mothers are place in ice.
107Poetry of jobsIn the Book of Jobs God in thunder hated questionsDirectly addressed to Him from ashes of sons, wivesCattle , body, mind, prayers, rosaries of faith-all lostTo an arrogant divine omni- desire to prove a point.Forget it if you mean to ask anything about apples.Apples do not mean anything, even when polished.A bite is sin when prompted by serpent of knowledge.Every Steve bites his apple, even the apple of eye.Every apple shall turn ashes, once the job is done.(remembering Steve Jobs of the Apple fame who passed thisweek)
108The giant wheelWhen you land there briefly with your flying feetTouching the hem of the sky, you will not live thereWith your treacherous blood coursing down dizzily.Men’s heads and things turn into a milky path of starsA blur of light nothingness, a tangled knot of history.You will return with a bit of the sky in your pockets.
109The street with the wall at the endIn the morning the feet shuffle through streetsListening to God’s song in the ears, the splatterOf water before houses, brooms before housesWomen making gurgling noises in night’s throatOf water- cleaning of sleep, on tongues stretched.The men have tooth-paste foam at their mouths.Some days we reach the history of an old womanWalking the feet of yesterday’s marriages, picklesMade, worship of deities, hospitals of childbirthsBabies crying in lungs, dark nights spent on bodiesSilk sarees in steel trunks, fragrant brides of sonsSweetmeats brought from gods, fears of violence.An unease occurs of slowly dawning futility of it allAnd the feet somehow end up at the wall at the endAnd have to trace the morning back to a side streetLosing sight of the woman and her enacted history.
110Pensioner’s notebookWhen the word comes, the idea’s genesis occursIn the deep night, when idea happens in our eyesOpen from sleep, having been quiet on sleep’s bedOr in ghostly rapid eye moments of broken dreams.Body is thought, on a wrinkled face, deep in poems,Or on a furrowed brow, bearing daughters like SitaWho are destined to suffer as wives for bigger glory.Daughter has to prove her life and innocence by fireAll because she is someone’s wife in the deep jungle.A pensioner’s notebook has to record his existenceHe has to prove his aliveness to the birds in the tree.The birds have to prove their aliveness on the wire.They have to hold a daily parliament on T.V. cable.So nobody will deny their existence in color plumes.A pensioner has to prove his existence to the worldThe world needs a viable proof of earthly existence.A body or a signed paper is proof of yearly aliveness.September poems are not recognized for the purpose.