ab Khwaab ki vehshat ka koi
waqt muayyan to nahiN; ab kabhi
soz ki lazzat ka tum kar lo jawaaz;
jo koi rok sake tum ko to jhuTla
dena; kuchh kaminoN ke ta’ayyun
ka gila ker lena; ab mukammal hua
aKhbaar-e-juz, chhin chuka
himmat-e-sawaal; ab shukar hai
ke tumhe muslehatan dekha hum ne;
kaun jhuTlaae ga kis taur se hoga
ab hisaab? iss tarah Khauf hi
chillaata hai sannaaTay may.
I can speak the hymnals that will
point to east forged with steel
tempered with the wrist of west and
a shallow grin unmet with the acrid
smile that gloats and prepares you
for a purposeful tryst with atoms.
I can speak the hymnals that will
chime with the low as it rings the
tune of up high, each vassal a vessel
splitting the tar hair that binds him
to rock certainties affixed by hand
of sin and pain and groomed with time.
The muse seeks the bard as a
Child is sought; the branches
Of a restive yearn are fodder
For love; what gains in a winter
Stream comes closer in heat and
Dies a little when frost dissolves.
Only when the seeker learns
To artfully don the garb of
The sought, when the playful
Stream of luck simmers sheet
Of pain, will the chokehold
Of sighs make way for union.
You have tilted the corners of your
Eye to mark heaven’s sleight of hand, and you leave empty handed.
The far-end is dead wood, the fire
Wood that will sting while it heals, and you caress the unleavened.
The one who stands out is a prism
That throws light on the many, and you plumb the two as one.
the lazy sin will outblush
will devour your sunburnt
you wilt in the sheening
rough cord of night’s final
a false prophet shall cry out from behind
the stormy drain and make me stain my
acts with rust of gain; mute then the
rage of vision as it clicks away reason
to a harried priest; slough off the kind
act of the thrushbird jostling each verb
with an ounce of rain; the dewdrop is
cancelled for lack of warmth and mist.
The bird does not befit
the glance that it gets
from foreshortening; the
dip in depth is scary as
life cannot bleed if artful
with evidence only to deem
it less worthy of aperture
Perforate the dry ash-bin, suck
The leaflet out of tomorrow’s
meandering; the gulf is left out
manned, out spanned by rusted
outlets pillaging an outrust,
an outwrought pier amidst sea.
the sweet harp of earth
harks the tug of spill
and the moss of whitened
claws sunk in mildew
heaven; create the drooping
mat with care, with the
touch of an alchemist praying
sullen to the fallen god & dust.
the dread in capturing the thill
that draws heaven to dirt is
wisdom, is hurt; the fear that
makes your heart thunder is pale
in comparison to the color of
rinsed noon, the fate of its red.
the theoliberal dust will settle in time
not before befuddling hearts, sinking
minds, coalescing goodwill into mush and
repeating mulch from a petrified storybook
few cared would matter, but it did, and it
stored dark endings as a matter of tact.
the geoliberal must settle longitudinal
accounts with the attitude of frost, and
give; give two hoots: one for the glib
necessity overtaking root of money, another
for the system of dies that are stamped
when limp currency trots out of fashion.
The song has contrived to sing beyond
a vessel of shard, of color made to form,
to reveal the brunt of a hundred years, the
lesson of foul unlearned, the grist of many
thousands unlived; yes the scent reaches
me as sure as it dissolves, reveres, speaks.
Yesterday, I picked up and skimmed Tagore once more and came across the poem below from “The Gardener”. This morning I checked the date of publication, and it is 1915! An acknowledgement was due, and so I darted off the short poem above.
Who are you, reader, reading my poems an hundred years hence?
I cannot send you one single flower from this wealth of the
spring, one single streak of gold from yonder clouds.
Open your doors and look abroad.
From your blossoming garden gather fragrant memories of the
vanished flowers of an hundred years before.
In the joy of your heart may you feel the living joy that sang
one spring morning, sending its glad voice across an hundred
the opportune time to sink the
mynah, to catch the phrase
from singing, to build the nest
that prods the shark of time
to die and die again; there is
blood, but the sea-shells have
conspired to whisper it sacred;
the scared waves will repeat.
spell thusness of a milky way,
the grasp of how a red mistake
meanders its way into the lush
parchments of a noon abandoned.
spell muskness of an introverted
thus, voting capillaries of choice
into hesitant action, and debunk.
the tarantula of wisdom goes hopping
against hope, wishing against the
loss of time and its tender mandarins,
seeking soothe in the bask of a sun
disparate with livid flames and a tender
though burning heart: wisp of thunder.
reminders of the cull will resonate
stricken streams of a humbled scream
coagulated, and there is pretence of
harm, of a deliberate wind of harm
that captures the bits of soul licking
wounds of yesterday spilling out & over.
the myth is not the fairytale, though
to catch the drift, the smoke and the
that flake off when dents of time speak
and buts, when the theme of now occludes,
from showing where it really comes from
“The language of Realpolitik offers a poor basis for constructing a popular consensus behind a corporate ideology. Hence modern imperialism has needed myths to legitimize itself. A policy which responds to the interests of the few but needs the support of the many must necessarily invoke a people’s sense of mission and fear.” ‘Political Culture and Foreign Policy: Notes on American Interventions in the Third World’ – The Selected Writings of Eqbal Ahmad – Eqbal Ahmad
hope lies trouble-free
hope trouble too
if you meander in the forest
if you mean well
in the forest does
it mean anything
the tree falls?
the ant will get in the brain of
the elephant - angry
the elephant will cry, and then