Wednesday, 13 October 2021

The Intruder

The boy popped up

Like a Jack-in-a-box

His gaze unwavering

Face masked

Shabbily attired

A thick bamboo stick

Lay reclined by his side

He sat on the boundary wall

of the Park

Not very far from the entrance of my flat

I had a tinge of doubt

What was he there for?

Plonked up like that?

He gesticulated to me

Which I failed to figure

Did he want some food?

Or sitting there to have some of his own?

I told Auntie to keep an eye on him

Something about him was not quite natural

When I returned after a few minutes

He was still there unmoved

I said,"Seen these strays

They will prey on you..."

This time he held a peeled banana aloft

And took a bite leisurely

His gaze still straight towards my balcony

Aunt said she had already warned him

About Babu, Neelu, Tuk Tuk and Sam

What about our Rinky (my pet)? The great gun

He neither seemed scared nor impressed

Carried on munching his biscuits and bread

Having no plan to budge an inch

Under the spell of suspicion

I called the guard 

Told him to ward off

The uninvited guest (or trespasser?)

Guard asked, "From where have you come lad?"

The boy's reply was not audible

At least he was not dumb as he pretended

The conversation ended

With the guard having succeeded 

To push him off   (not without reluctance)

The boy hobbled off

But Rinky made it worse

And wanted to pee at that very moment

I hesitated at the gate

Perhaps I will meet the strange boy again

Outside in the service lane

But when I looked around 

He was nowhere to be found 

The next day...

I called upon my shrink

"I am having nightmares

That boy and his passive stares...."

Shrink said, "He is move on

There is lots to life than baseless fear

Have no worry...take a chill pill...put on some music

and groove on..."

Wednesday, 6 October 2021

Snippets - I

 this sudden urge

          to be dead

by dawn

I check my nominees

once more 



inside the Metro

for an inch of space

a sudden surge of freedom

whelms over

no one knows

who I am



at the bus stop

I wonder

how many it takes 

to make a crowd

how many less

to make you lonely


I bump into 

a blushing rose bush

a greeting stray mongrel

a smiling passer by

funny! I had taken

the wrong turn


temple bells

I leave behind

my worn chappal

and take along

frayed memories

too heavy to part

too many to stack

These micro poems were also published in Muse India e-Journal 

Monday, 18 March 2019

वो सांवली सी लड़की

वो सांवली सी लड़की
मेरे पड़ोस की नहीं
पर मैंने उसे देखा है
कई मर्तबा खुद को
निहारते  हुए आईने में
पलकों के पगडंडियों को
काजल से पोत कर
सपनों पे और रंग चढ़ाया है जैसे
होठों पे हंसी टिका कर
अनगिनत सवालों का जवाब माँगा है
गालों पे महीन से झुर्रियों की तरकश से 
पर फिर भी उसने सदियाँ लगा दी
खुद को सजाने संजोने में

और मैं यहाँ वक़्त के नोकीले काँटों
से चुभ कर एक लम्हा ढूंढ़ती फिरती हूँ
अपना चेहरा भीड़ में खोजने के लिए

Saturday, 19 January 2019

क्या तुम वही हो ?/Are You The Same?

क्या तुम वही हो?
जो भरी दोपहरी में
धुप से खेला करती थी?
तीसरे माले की बरसाती की
वह कोने की खिड़की
जिसको सहलाती नीम
के पेड़ की टहनियों पे
दबे पांव रख कर
कपास सी बादलों को
गुदगुदाना चाहती थी
क्या तुम वही हो?

क्या तुम वही हो ?
जो ख्वाबों को संजोती थी
कल के लिए और
गुनगुनाती थी गीत आशाओं भरी
क्या तुम वही हो ?
जो दहलीज़ लांघ कर
अजनबी किनारों के धुल छाना करती थी
और अन्जान चेहरों के
मक्कार इरादों से सहम गयी थीं

क्या तुम वही हो ?
जो दिन रात के मेहनत  के
बूंदों में आंसुओं को छुपा लेती
और ज़िन्दगी के खोखलेपन
को एक नया अंजाम देने
का हौसला जुटाती थी
क्या तुम वही हो ?

Are you the same ?
Who would play with sunshine
In desultory afternoons
And dare to step 
Oh! So lightly on
The delicate twigs of
The Neem  tree
Brushing against the
Lone attic window
To tickle the cottony clouds
Are you the same?
Who would sing
Lullabies of hope
To save dreams
For the morrow

Are you the same?
Who broke the bounds
To caress the sands of
Unknown shores
Are you the same?
Who dreaded the masks of
The masqueraders …
The inevitable betrayal
Of deceit …

Are you the same
Who would diffuse
The tears in the
Sweet smelling sweat
Of days’ toil  to live
A vacant lie
With bravado
Are you the same?

Wednesday, 3 October 2018

Dancing To The Tune

On the tip of an iceberg
I so gently place my big toe
Ever so lightly...
And haul myself up
A wee bit....a wee bit ....a wee....more
To nibble the sky
Just this much

Poised so delicately
             On the rim of reality
And I...

Shared With Poets United 

Thursday, 9 November 2017

Simply Haiku

There are some poets, while reading them, you get this overpowering feeling of inadequacy. 

Why can't I write like them? And therein lies the mystery and the mastery, of course. Every writer is unique in his/her writing. However, it is that indefinable element that decides the connect between a particular writer and his/her readers. The choice of words? The expressions? The thoughts behind the words? The subject?  I am hard put to place my finger on the factor which triggers that magnetic pull...that  extent of power to influence...and inspire. Yet, there it is. The awe! A tad tempered with envy which perhaps eggs you on on the path of persistent creativity...prods you...impels introspection...nudges you to grow within and without......analyse....assess.....and EVOLVE!!! 

Michael McClintock is one such poet whose haiku has that hypnotic effect on me.

Again, it's difficult to pinpoint what exactly it is which intrigues and enthralls me so much about his poems. Once I tried to review  a book by Ruskin Bond, again one of my favourites. I failed miserably. And I know why I did. It was because of his simplicity of expression, his flow of every day language, his commonplace thoughts which automatically become the reader's own. Critiquing him is as difficult as critiquing your own self! Because it is you yourself who comes out of the pages of his books...

The same magic is again on with Michael McClintock....He is so close to your heart that you feel it will pop out if you fiddle with it too long and hard. Funny! Isn't it?


With the grey smoggy days of the Capital this haiku is so essentially us - the city bred, sufferers in unison looking up to a day of knowing...not knowing... the sun may come up may not....who knows whether the mesh of pollutants will make way for sunshine or not? 

Doesn't this tanka poem transport you to a different world of half lights and silhouettes ?

Yes, you can see those eon of ancient wisdom peeping through those crisscross tell-tale lines of memories reminisced on this planet earth...

And this one with an infinite proposition of expansiveness of heart, mind and soul...........a very famous one at that!!

And who has not gone through this ordeal of turbulence and the stillness of quietude thereafter....? That there is still life after all that havoc...........! Grand!!

Oh! I love this one and I know and feel the fragrance right here sitting now....

Its been so long that I have undertaken a train journey....nostalgia! And that's what haiku are supposed to be ....hold your hands down memory lane...... the wispiness compressed in a three liner.

The second line of the ku is optimism and hope personified....this is the ultimate border-line ku between image and thoughts evoked by the image.....

Again a tanka poem which pokes you to evaluate your own weaknesses, limitations, narrow confines of aptitude and attributes.

Last but not the least, the most intriguing haiku which made me ponder long ...very long....the mystique beauty of those three lines invoking images not tampered or tinged or cropped by human audacity...simply what is and not what one perceives it to be....

Finally, ladies and gentlemen, its Michael McClintock for you...all the way across the seven seas ...who sees what you have seen and wondered about all along and speaks a language you have babbled in.............priceless in its brevity and unique in its simplicity... that nano chip of wisdom strewn across which has immortalized mankind with its agelessness..His haiku images are all over Google...Grab them....relish them.....cherish them....

Sunday, 8 October 2017


Mellow morning…

A blue bed spread hung
Outside my window
Without much ado
The cushions of clouds
A patchwork of snow
The gold silk thread
Interspersed in the weaving
I know its His doing
Afternoons are long
At times sun is strong
At others shadows draw
Silhouettes deep and long
The balmy breeze whispers
A hummable tune
I hum along
Its His catchy song

Dusk  a rush of colours
An intense stroke here
A languid touch there
Deepening in moments
As evening strolls in
The echoes gather words
A few hurriedly spoken
A few uncommoly blurred

Nights are placid
My boudoire opens
To a sequined sky
Whiff of jasmine
 Gleaming panes afar
Of strangers and householders
Solitude is a Gift
So precious from You
My due

Dawn is stealthy
Feathery wisp
A knock so soft
Like the moving lips
To a rosary of chants

No! More like the hymn
Of the Carmelite nuns
Dousing the soul
In symphony rare
Or like a bouquet
Parceled by an
Unknown Courier

Pleasant surprise
May be for some
But I have a hunch
You had come!

Shared with Poet's United