Saturday, January 28, 2017

Lets never go back

Looking at you I think maybe I could
even have a life here, finally stop running,
Because I see you now with that
smile in your eyes, and I think we
could have the whole world.
All these years we lived across the road
from each other and never met;
even then we were lost in other people.
I read your poems and I think I missed
out so much, would you catch me up?
What life separates us, what literature
brings us closer, maybe you will
never know because you never asked.
But we are on the road now, the
evening light frames you as though
you were in a movie, smoking a cigarette,
And I am thinking, lets never go back.

Friday, January 20, 2017

And how incredible is that?

There are no stars tonight. the cold
has enveloped the world you know
The world shapes itself back,
it creaks, its breaks and you suffer too
You are halfway between heaven and hell,
How do you know which way to go?
Yesterday you heard a Simon and Garfunkle song
in a movie, today you looked back a little
to the past few years,
in the evening something gripped you,
a feeling of wonderment at your own life,
so insignificant but still your very own,
and how there have been times when you
have despaired, but somehow you got here,
a little bruised but otherwise intact,
and how incredible is that?

Monday, January 16, 2017

The perennial question

The question you asked me,
the perennial question really,
probably asked by millions of people
who left behind the home they grew up in
But I haven't left my home, not yet,
merely found myself in a country
that doesn't belong to me.
So how do you identify yourself?
Is there a dissonance?
For that I would have to trace myself
all the way back to the summit of Koubru
where we once dwelled,
because everything else was a vast
expanse of water, when the water retreated
we stepped into newly formed land,
leaving behind our abode in the clouds;
and then the oft-repeated story, sung
as songs, the filling of the swamps,
the clearing of the woods, the sowing
of the seeds, of Gods and their mortal lovers,
a love that didn't last.
But facts are scarce and far-between,
I make myself up as I go, string bits
and pieces of stories together,
One in the long line of the witches
that elude, breaking down the old
with our laughter, creating anew
with spells wistfully whispered.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Its been a while so first there is the
awkward laughter to get past, then ofcourse
the relief at the familiarity, the filling up
of the lost years, like sand slipping through
the fingers, and the disbelief in your voice
that my life did not mirror yours,
a guarded distance now, a fractured smile;
you had been in love only
with the idea of me anyway.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

The art of leaving

The wintry winds have brought with it
 the ancient lores Abok-Ahanbi would tell you
 to ease you to sleep
The story of the seven wise men of yore
Who shapeshifted into birds and flew away
When the king gave the decree
 To burn all our ancient books,
There is an art to leaving,you are thinking,
Because sometimes that is all there is left to do
Because partly hardly wildly
you are still looking for a great adventure
 to set out to and in your heart of hearts,
 in your dream of dreams,
you know this is not where the story ends
So you leave with a spell whispered
Because wild hearts can never be tamed,
Only loved, only craved.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

How you still read my words
the way I want to be read
We got a lot of things wrong,
but this strangely stayed
And even though years and kindness
separate us now, I am always
so touched when you tell me so,
Always tell me so.

Because partly partly partly...

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Sharing a book with you, courtesy Frank O’Hara
 who must be quite mad at me for borrowing
 his opening lines ever so often,  is more fun
than going through a whirlwind of parties and after-parties,
partly because we had written similar
dedications to each other, partly because
at my age, which is not all much really but I do feel quite old
but not too wise, I have realised how precious
female friendships are, the ones premised on
“saving the world” if you will, one person at a time,
one book at a time,  .
At this stage of my life when I seem to have outgrown most
Of my friends, I am so glad we are exchanging notes
On our lives, the way I used to when I was younger
and had a best friend who I have now seem 
to have lost to time and distance.  
And I would rather share this Delhi winter afternoon
having  a conversation with you, flitting from one topic to another,
to keep rolling the wheel of discourse is the endeavour.
By now we are giddy on wine and ideas, 
and planning backpacking trips through Europe(a cliche?),
also terribly inspired that you have taken up painting again.
And here we are, taking a respite from our newly adult lives,
faltering, bruised but laughing till our stomachs ache.
Because not every poem needs to be a love poem
Nor every muse a paramour.