In The Morning

there is birdcall

in the sky

they are celebrating

with chirp and song

and whistle

the paradise of summer

in the mist

beautiful white buildings stand

like they were eternal

in the trees gulmohur bloom

bright red

and yellow laburnum flowers

adorn the streets

and now the sun

slowly rises through the blue

in swathes of gold

but only I know

how it feels

sitting here

at my window

only I know

my burning life

turning to ash

on my tongue.

The Focus Is On A Point

Donkey Kong

Octopus

the day is longer than the verandah

summer is hot

and I know

what it is to be sad

life I cannot fathom yet

but I see the buildings and the trees

I see the roads and the cars

and the faces of the people and I am happy

only now this summer I remember all this

sitting in my room

the laburnum outside is a yellow carpet on the trees

there is so much shit in the world

chemical warfare in Syria Kashmir is burning

an iron griddle falls on a little girl’s head in Bombay

a piece of her skull gets lodged in her brain

what horror I think lying down in bed

as the afternoon sun breathes like a dragon outside my window

and then the doors of my mind close

the words I read and write become water

I hold on to my life

I can barely recognise

to claim

this is not the person I am

this is not the world I know

I think

and this is what life is

I realise

as it slowly begins to get darker

and the birds start playfully wheeling around in the sky

while I sit alone at my window watching.

The Wild Mind

keeps rolling

through the world

of white buildings

and all that variety

which the moon

now will soon shine on

how beautiful

how calm

and how sad

all this is

and last night the flat above mine

got flooded

I was collecting water

in three buckets

and swabbing the floor

from the leakage

and then there is all this delight

and anxiety in the afternoon sun

the colour of burnished gold

the colour of memory

the colour of poetry

the colour of song

the colour of sadness

the colour of death

while the sky paints itself

into such a stillness

I awaken into such quiet bliss

I have never felt before

here you go partner

for all that

the train seems to say

awakening me aloud

with its horn

once again

and the small brown sparrows chirp

sweet whistles of melody

a black crow cancels out

cawing in an arc

I sigh and sigh

until a recurring image of the sea

comes by

and somehow tempts me

to try

a breakfast of eggs and bread

to clear the confusion in my head

go on go on

the waves seem to say

it’s a nice way

to begin your day.

 

The above poem is from my third book The Branches (2015).

Dreams, Diaries of Loss

That is what they are

always the remembering

the thinking in space

but here you probably have something

I mean the day’s done dead and all that

still, the moon comes to weep on your shoulder

you know this gives comfort

this remembering

picking up your umbrella ready to leave in the rain

you know these tears you cannot weep are not yours

drink a glass of water

pick up your umbrella and go into the rain

the road the ride everything you take with you in the backseat of the autorickshaw

going into the night that melts like ink in these streets

in your mind

is the way things work

this giving away that you know you live for

the gathering the going.

 

The above poem is from my first book Reeling (2012).

Last Evening

I had dinner early

and hit the bed

I couldn’t sleep

I was feeling too bored

so I got up and

went to Juhu Beach

it was wonderful

the sun was still burning yellow

in the sky

the waves were silver

the sand was golden

and it wasn’t crowded

I walked along

and spotting

some stairs

leading to a building

went and sat

down there

it was beautiful

soon I was joined

by two northeastern children

a tiny sister and brother pair

the sister older

threatened to beat me first

then quickly became my friend

and chanting nonsense rhyme

jumped down the stairs

one by one

I leaned my back

against the wall

the poet in me delighted

the loneliness in me unlocked

and looked at the sea

my heart beginning to warm

and then I found myself laughing

when I was shortly joined by

a shaggy brown stray dog

who came looking

rather purposefully

for something

all in a pant

and finding me instead

quickly slithered away.

 

The above poem is from my third book The Branches (2015).

Now It’s Like This

I look at my face

in the mirror

and it’s a waste

what is the world like

just sunlight and green

and grey and blue

and white

and me

how I feel

so many buildings

I tell you

just so many

what a knot

O by the way

when they fall backwards

what a tumble

they make

how you go

through air

straight outside

and then once again

inside this jumble

see my hands

my fingers

how the index

and middle one

tremble

see this rain

in the morning

this silence this day

my ashtray

my shoes and my socks

inside them

my black shorts

hanging from a hook

so lifeless

the chugging train outside

blows the sky apart

I see the light blue struck with silver

shimmering like water flowing

and then I find myself in this boat

beginning to float

travelling to new places

that play

with the barriers of my mind

untying anything

in a bind

of those things

I now sing

ding a ling a ling.

Gathering’s Day Unlimited

Snareteam’s mess by the skyway.

Holes. Big ones.

 

Blue late and thinking of home,

weeping.

 

Angeltrees locked in with night,

quaking.

 

In whose disembrace,

whose dreamday,

do you sleep?

 

Whose words,

silencefires burning?

 

What stake,

starscapes skipping unbeat

 

you to here, noplace,

nomoons disgrace?

 

 

The above poem is from my first book Reeling (2012).

The Sun

arrives again

empty of light

full of talk

so much talk

it becomes real and loud conversations

and the entire L-shaped house

its furniture

its décor

its yellow walls

just there

all these years

dull and dark…

and all day

I see myself

all the time…

but there are

some moments…

like a tiny opening…

and then pure sky

the escape

at last

flying forgetting…

and refreshed

with birds in my hair

I return

to my father’s chair

by the window

and the wind blows

and blows

making my head roll

over and over

until I am blown over

to my father’s bed

and the night then

arrives beautiful

with all its lights

full of desire

and gathers me up

in her arms

taking me entranced

through all the beds

I’ve slept in

down to my mother’s womb

and beyond that

O I am blown

till I am no more

and the lights

slowly go out

in my eyes

and I sleep.

 

The above poem is from my third ebook The Branches (2015).

At Juhu Beach Yesterday

there were so many people

so chilled out

so many women

whose lips I wanted to kiss

and the sky

and the sea

merging beautifully

and then a tiny beggar girl

who went past me

talking baby talk

sounded like an old woman

worn

her life

sand in the breeze

that voice shook me

to the bone

it was like

some withered ghost woman

speaking from a cave

and the sea

and the crowd

disappeared into a cloud

and on my way home

the busy mad streets

the dark buildings

growing like monster concrete trees

the traffic the noise

slowly faded

and then the lights coming on

everywhere

also faded

from my mind

remembering that beggar girl’s eyes

and thinking of our different lives

under the darkening face

of the uncomprehending skies.

 

The above poem is from my third book The Branches (2015).