The fore-bidden

The foreboding is one of remembrance, of being castaway, of
tasting acid death as it gnaws out your innards. The silent shriek
prefigures what was fore-bidden: the gnarl, the howl, the groan.

The lust is one of revulsion, of being cowardly in face of acid
death as it approaches and recalls the stench. Stalk out
the lustful sore roots, and the sea will grant you its breeze.

power, justice, man, god

Power is the justification of power, the daily slights
adding up to a gaping wound staring you in the face,
a grand pus-filled showcase of historical inequity
ordained by god, for the glory of man, his middling meddling


Justice is the undoing of power. It is the stream correcting its
flow, talking to the wind, gushing past the mountain, seeping
the lowly fields. It is the wrath of the wind, touching the stream,
laughing with the mountain, weeping when it reaches the seed.

Prelude to Jon Elia’s “Do AwaazaiN” (Shayad, pg. 243)

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We walk into, beside each other, breathing
the space around us, but not each other, you
and I, forgetting daily the remembrance of
what could once again be you and I.

Interpretation of Jon Elia’s “Maa’mool” from Shayad (pg 88). Transliteration and translation below:

Maa’mool Routine
jaanay kub se For how long
mujhe yaad bhi naheeN jaanay kub se can’t even recall how long it has been
hum ik saath ghar se nikaltay haiN since we have been leaving our home together
aur shaam ko and in the evening
aik hee saath ghar lauTte haiN coming back home together
magar hum ne ik doosray se But neither of us
kabhi haal pursi naheeN ki ever asked how the other was
na ik doosray ko and neither of us
kabhi naam lay kar mukhaatib kiya ever called out the other by name
jaanay hum kaun haiN! Who knows who we are!

I posit

I will rend asunder your hubris, uproot your nuance stillborn.
Flow of time I will dismember.
(For I posit eternity.)

The spring dare gushes? The flower dare blooms? The river dare flows?
And desire dare takes refuge in life?
(For I posit death.)

I posit death, eternal strangling of hope, stillborn; I
Negate the no, falsify trope, un-sing the un-song.
(For I posit, reclaim soul.)

Interpretation of Jon Elia’s “tere ghuroor ka hulya bigaaR DaalooN ga” from Yaa’ni (2003), pg. 65.
Transliteration of his poem follows:

tere ghuroor ka hulya bigaaR DaalooN ga
maiN aaj tera gareebaan phaaR DaalooN ga

tarah tarah ke shigoofay jo chhoRta hai tu
maiN dil ka baagh-e-numu hee ujaaR DaalooN ga

kahaaN ka sayl-e-azal ta kinaargaah-e-abad
maiN huN udum, maiN sabhi ko litaaR DaalooN ga

buhat adaa se tu guzra hai chashma saaroN se
ye sun ke raah may teri maiN baaR DaalooN ga

shigoofgi ki teri yaad jo dilaatay haiN
maiN aisay saaray pawday ukhaaR DaalooN ga

ye tay kiya ke darya-e-mauj masti ko
saraab-e-dasht-e-tapeeda maiN gaaR DaalooN ga

tamaam naqsh-e-tamanna farayb thay, so thay
maiN saaray naqsh-e-tamanna bigaaR DaalooN ga

jo rishta hai dil-o-jaaN ka hai ye sar ba sar jhooTa
so, maiN to ab dil-o-jaaN maiN daraaR DaalooN ga

jhanDolay baaloN ki pur fitna, uss se keh dena
maiN uss kameen to zinda hee gaaR DaalooN ga

mujhay to ab usay dangal may ganda karna hai
so, maiN usay buray haaloN pichaaR DaalooN ga.

greasy palms

death is not about to follow you in the ditch it has better

things cut out                                                           better
things cut out in                                                       better


Life is the hound the one that will stalk you haunt you are
you scared yet scared enough wits lost yet no?

Grease its palms and you will get greasy palms from the 
transaction that goes beyond time it goes beyond choice
to an axiom the starting axiom that proffered the word.

sink your teeth in the contradiction

sink your teeth in the contradiction, the
gnarl of latent symbols, so that you too
can taste the rift that tears the stars apart;
you too can bear the brunt of starlight making
faces at noon, egging it on to show a little bit of
                                      something, a lit bit of 
                                      daylight piercing the armor
of       lost                         glances stuck
         in traffic
howling for a fix
growling for tomorrow, for a form
                           than distinct 
that stands apart and stands renewed, this last bit of bravado goes a long way, it does not go a long way.

the hoot, the hoo, and the ho

I. the hoot
the hoot the maximal hoot
and nothing but the hoot that
is the question for if the hoot
were known by any other claim
it would look the same taste the
same feel too the same that dam
ned hoot the maximal hoot and
nothing but the hoot.

II. the hoo
it behooves the deathly hoo to screech as
loud as it does does too the deathly hoo and

when the screech is slipping across the shiny
floor, you go ‘it slipped!’ but that is how the hoo

goes should go slipping across the shiny floor
the hoo the claim on the hoo the flaw of the 

claim on the hoo whereby the deathly follows
suit screeching too it does as it did on the floor.

III. the ho
the ho
      to minimize the ho
lessen the ho – reverentially sitting buddha lotus mindful om all incense vapor droopy eyed
that is not ho that is no-ho what the fo-ho – lessen
minimize and lessen minimize till what you get is not even a drop not a vapor of a drop – and
damn the lotus leaf – let it rot midstream.