There Are Some Open Spaces

where you can be

preferably on a rock under a tree.

 

The vehicles in the distance you will barely hear

the old buildings across are dead and dear.

 

And as the rhymes you read open your mind

you look up at the sky calm and quiet.

 

There you see the endless white flowing

also perhaps one or two birds flying.

 

Now the day darkens and you feel

one with the trees one with the breeze

and you begin to walk home

one with the streets.

 

Shops and shoppers,

vegetables and vendors

gladden your eye.

 

Streetlight and headlight

brighten the night.

 

 

The above poem is from my second book Circling the Sky (2013).

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I Could Not Stand Up

not even

to my knees

there were words

so heavy

my head knocked

against the street constantly

I did not want to go on

but if I stopped

nerves burst through

my body

and my back cracked

so I stumbled on.

 

Out of nowhere

the music began to play

the notes slow

I saw the sea

and as I started

to stand up straight

through the mist

several skyscrapers rose.

 

 

The above poem is from my second book Circling the Sky (2013).

The Watchman

sat under the mango tree

on a blue tin chair

tapping his stick

on the ground

in the afternoon.

 

Across the road

a cream Fiat slept

in its rusted garage

in the shadow

of a faded

yellow building.

 

The white sky

burned in

complete silence.

 

 

The above poem is from my second book Circling the Sky (2013).

The Sky

is a big blue jar of water

I drink from all day

the birds do too

before returning to circle the buildings

how beautiful they look

carefree

going round

and I stay

at my window

and watch

I find

the shops

the thin strip of road

the timber sticks stacked

the trees

the locality

asleep

just waking

in the glowing golden light

giving it wings

making it merge with the sky

in the morning.

 

The above poem is from my second book Circling the Sky (2013).

They Are Playing Cricket

at Oval Maidan

in the hot afternoon sun on Saturday

the boys are shouting and cheering

the thwack of bats on green tennis balls

groups of people in their track-suits

run along the periphery

from the taxi I’m travelling in

I look up at the graceful Art Deco buildings

standing in the shade

Palm Court Ivorine Belvedere Court

later returning by the same route at night

tired and perspiring

streetlights join my ride

quiet cars at traffic signals…

and at the Stadium Restaurant

where I have my dinner

I can’t help thinking again

this is the same city the same Bombay

where so many bombs have gone off.

 

The above poem is from my second book Circling the Sky (2013).

You Would Know This

the afternoon asleep

like a log

the sun pouring and pouring

its light

the streets in silence

the lone man or two out

walking slowly

as though in a dream

the cars parked

deep in slumber

with always one rusted long dead

and here sometimes

when that rare breeze blows

a stray dry leaf

dragging along the road

is loud enough

to keep echoing in your head

50 paces or more.

 

The above poem is from my second book Circling the Sky (2013).

It Was A Mellow Scene

when afternoon light faded

and evening set in

over the green grass of the gardens

the white and yellow buildings

I would look up

at a second-storey window

bathed in light and shadow

at the blue or cream paint inside

with a picture probably hanging on a wall

the afternoon lovers leaving

the pink stone benches for others

who would soon arrive

a lone car in the distance

in the last rays of the sun

turning a corner

I would find the empty footpaths

blissfully asleep in the shade of the trees

and peace moved my heart

when the first hawker

arrived pushing his cart.

 

The above poem is from my second book Circling the Sky (2013).

At This Time

as the morning unfolds

the white skies

and cool air

the cock crows

and Diwali firecrackers

burst in the background

the sun yesterday

burned me

blazing into my body

my head

I am still hot

and I await luck like a dog

the buildings are bones

that belong to others

I pee in the gardens

while the stars up above laugh

the moon howls through

its white and silver circle

a perfect expression

chilling my heart

you’ve got to live Dominic

I tell myself

you’ve got to fight

you’ve got to earn your life

on your four limbs

and breathe fresh air

I wag my tail

I trot

I run through

the streets of Bombay

like a wild hound

barking.

It Has Been

raining inside my head

for over two days…

all my thoughts are drowning…

I sit in my living room

and stare outside the window…

a new building is under construction

dark grey it’s a large skull

with 25 eyes

I keep staring through the rain

through the dull wet morning…

then a man appears in one of the windows…

he too just stares and stares.

 

The above poem is from my second book Circling the Sky (2013).

I Walked

and walked in

the noonday sun

till my clothes

turned into a river

I swam through

the heavy traffic

asking for directions

no one knew the place

I wanted to go

I walked back and reached

the railway station

with crowds swarming

all over the bus depot

the streets the restaurants

the tea-stalls

the street-food sellers’ carts

rickshaws puttered everywhere

then someone pointed out

the building

well I had passed that place

but never thought

it would be there

off the street

in a cluster of several others

I was looking for a seven-storey building

and not spotting one on both sides

of the road

had walked on and on…

finally entering its cool foyer

for a moment I thought

how nice it would be

if I could forget myself

forget my purpose here

if the lift with its sliding iron doors

forgetting its function too

could take me straight to the sky

where large white clouds were blowing

unthinking in every direction

unmindful of anything

that happened here.

 

The above poem is from my second book Circling the Sky (2013).