Thursday, 29 September 2011

Phosphorous-like the moon tonight charred in the street
Dark times, when there are no holds barred in the street

Your winter aromas melted as I blew into my hands
Your summer sweat in my coldness tarred in the street 

Unthinking, and with silent smiles, she gave me her heart
But what if she says, "My brain will retard", in the street?

What will you do when they shut the doors out tomorrow?
Threshold become, and get inturn barred in the street 

I would arise and go now and build Innisfree hives, (but) -
Who can afford to lose ones guard in the street?

Another struggle, another fashion, and another tortured passion
Another mighty spirit convulsively jarred in the street

Oh Irony! Mistress of sunny days – foreboding, flashy..
I lost my umbrella as it poured hard in the street.

Smooth polished shoes scratch in battlefield sands,
Historian's Rana Sanga was perchance scarred in the street

The potter rubs his nose in mud, as God bows to priest
Those made in heaven are oft marred in the street
[In response to a Punjabi verse:Akhiyan je Ghumeyar mendhda, sirr mere te la'wnda', which means  - Oh only if my potter(maker - Punjabi word Ghumeyar (from Hindi Kumhaar) has that double sense) would have concentrated some attention over my unworthy being...']

There is matter for memory, yes.. but then, who cares?
The moon that died tonight was not starred in the street

We cross miles and reach where? - “counter and desk” - 
“Save and pray” – and measure yard by yard in the street

Ghazal! Thou coy mistress of the emperors’ palaces!
I will lift and turn you avant garde in the street.

The page smothers under ashen embers, who broke in here?
Hold fort! Is there somewhere a bard in the street? 

Friday, 9 September 2011

Beneath the Skin..

What lurks in this quagmire of veins beneath the skin?
Aridity above perchance somehow rains beneath the skin.

Time’s tutelage taught me lessons that I didn’t follow
Consequently, it seems something canes beneath the skin

Those farmers that reaped epistles, sow cell-phones today
The ‘rural repast’ of love urbanes beneath the skin

Inroads you allowed them fool, to make into your heart
Now flourishes a network of by-lanes beneath the skin

Here a bomb there a bomb everywhere a bomb bomb
Oh good old Rhymes! Go change trains beneath the skin

My heart in loneliness abuses me all the while
On field my head Zinadine Zidanes beneath the skin

The tug of war with age, is finally all that there is
Flickering joys incessantly fight pains beneath the skin

On the surface today’s hearts, merely on the surface
Beneath the skin however, those brains, beneath the skin

How internal that struggle turned a misty civil war 
Hamlet failed to see therein those Danes beneath the skin

Night’s stars are buried by the Sun’s violent break
How violently Doubt, ascertains beneath the skin

The two felt light, walking hand-in-hand, the village road
Autopsy of the corpses revealed chains beneath the skin

Give me my final paan as Life spits me out
For red if not blood, some stains beneath the skin

Two lines never make a couplet fool, One needs a magnet’s compression
Otherwise they are, if you look closely, quatrains beneath the skin!

Monday, 5 September 2011

Couldn't we one day... (A pre-monsoon shower)

Couldn't we one day...
Get wet together in this lovely rain?
Holding each other as two frightened lovers shall in grey?
Shall we not then let our necks drop back
Let them follow the watery fingers that run their nails on our spines?
Shall not we then smell each other's hands?
Unknowingly comparing for which to be the sweeter?
The hands...the rain? Or the rain on your hands... Or shoulders?
Shall we not then forget ourselves? Will not that rain blur the ink stains of ego?
Forgetting even our union?
Kissing as perfect strangers
Just celebrating rain...?

A Monsoonal Interlude

Oh come on now!

What like defeated Generals at consolatory post war meetings
Now you peep and now hide?
Like a new wife, stop fulfilling protocol coyness.
Descend now with a full stride.

Nothing remains undone! With complete force fall now.
Unfurl your highest flags
that the cooling petals of benediction may shower joy now.

Empty are sad rosebuds. Colour them, Breathe them your scent.
Where are sitar's youthful notes? Come now and give them vent.
Hear you not these many-shaded Malhaars?
Some of them are beggars, aggressors some.
Weeping unto you in prayer, energizing your passions in welcome.
Many. Many on footpaths have breathed dry.
Hopes get humid as your arrogant clouds ply.

Heart's begging bowl is humble yet.
Fill it now with love
Enough have rained the redenned eyes
Enough of this game, Rain now from the skies.

A translation: A tribute

"Abke ham bichhde, to shayad kabhi khwabon mein milen
Jis tarha sookhe hue phool kitaabon mein milen"

(Parted thus this moment, we shall perchance in dreams someday meet
Like long dead, dried flowers, within books the eyes greet.)

"Dhoondh ujde hue logon mein wafa ke moti
ye khazaane tujhe mumkin hai kharaabon mein milen"

(Seek out the pearls of fidelity, among the atrophied lot
Such rare wealth, oftener, with the 'useless' ones is got)

"Tu Khuda hai na mera ishk farishton jaisa
Dono insaan hain to kyon itne hijaabon mein milen"

(No God are you, nor angel-like my love's creed
Mortals as both thus be, of many faceted veils, what need?)

"Gham-e-duniya bhi gham-e-yaar mein shaamil karlo
Nasha badhta hai sharaaben jo sharaabon mein milen"

(With the despair of the beloved,the pains of existence amalgamate
One mixed into the other, liquors must the better intoxicate)

"Aaj ham daar par khinche gaye jin baaton par
kya ajab kal wo zamaane ke nisaabon mein milen"

(The very reasons which drag us to the gallows, serving as our crimes
Shall tomorrow unsurprisingly, be the syllabi of the times)

"Ab na wo mein hun, na tu hai, na wo maazi hai 'faraz'
Jaise do saaye tamanna ke saraabon mein milen"

(Neither I, nor you 'Faraz' nor sweet old days as before do emerge
As if in illusions of desires, two faint shadows must perfunctorily converge)

In drowsiness..

All this show
And yet to see bewilderment in the nature of crime
To pass thus, one's time
in an inglorious flow..

In those moments of madness, one never stays
And yet to dream in a minute, an age 
When age like a dream in a minute strays
To weep and regain then, or change..

With surprise the slow turgidity of 'I'
to steal and then return with an inwardly-winking cry
A heart loving or a coin sly..

On being shown my place

I'm no one.

Somebody's pride,
somebody's guilt..
Somewhere I hide,
Somewhere I tilt.

Somehow I choke
Somehow exist.
I'm ash and smoke
Of a presumptuous zeitgeist.

I'm no one.

Some laugh at me
Some bite my back
Some show me courage,
Is what I lack.

Some hinder me
Some school.
I'm the worthless dust
Of a momentous whirlpool.

I'm no one.