Her man stole a neighbourhood girl, And went Arunachal a long ago, When Munni crawled in her Belly, swollen to burst. She lived at a hut, And toil at day at lush green fields Plucked tender leaves and buds, And some dry wood way back. At dead winter night when moon Bathed the village, cold and grey, She thumped and crooned The baby coaxing inside. Thus she passed her terrible days Eyes swollen and breasts dry And one night laboured she And had her joy, Munni born. (First published in anthology, Rise to Higher Essence)
Twice a month I go to Hariahati and drink haria Among the drunkards, peasants and labourers all, Two pigs skinned and men have their heyday! Round some fat women, haunch men nine or ten, The fire fall on rugged cheeks, eyes shine bright, And they drink and brawl, howl and growl. The mango grove screened four sides by Swaying paddy fields stretched miles upon miles, And yonder on a huge treetop fifty white herons bask. No tin shade, no tarpaulin over heads And when the rains fall, they drench open, And mad eyes glue to the
I love you, You are so good! You pledge your life For a square meal, Day you toil and night You sleep and populate, Evening you smoke, play cards, Drink tea, gossip, and pass Hay days! Then suddenly comes Second childhood, and you Wait for the last day, And die. Silently you come, And silently you go, No rupture, no ripple, You leave. Such a beautiful life, Ah! Such a marvellous life, You live! I envy you, my villagers, You are too good, No storm, no wave, no wind, Rages your heart, So stagnant and sterile, So
Gone were the days When men swarmed her hut, And passed metamorphic nights. She was a peerless beauty, Tall and stout, and an elusive broad smile Always stuck her. Body shapely and muscular, eyes, large And liquid, Hair long, thick and black, and Men bought gifts night and day. Traces of beauty still she holds, But her old suitors tread her yard no more. At times a few drunken strangers visit her. She then shriek, ‘I sell flesh no more,’ And drive the strangers out, But clients she can’t dissuade thus. So she hung
And when the sun sets, and darkness descends We have to cross the river. No pain, no sorrow, no dirge, no lamentation. Why do you cry, my friend? Let us be true to earth, Let us be true to life. Let us go to an alien land And cultivate, and make rows of flower beds, And drink honey, and sleep on the heavy boughs of stars. Let us look at the humongous dark trees And bath in the mellowed dew, in morn and evening too, And lie on long untrammeled grass. Let us scent the wild
An Old Man on a Wooden Bridge An old man sat on an old wooden bridge amid the forest deep Beneath ran a hidden mossy creek, and beyond, The trees were lovely, dark and green, and the grassy path lay virgin. Fish scuttled and dived head high, and the cool black water swirled. The old man with shaking hands and legs trembled Sat there for hours, and admired the awful scene. Twilight and the tinged cloudlets Sailed across the sea blue sky, And a flock of white herons gleamed, and lazily went by. He looked each side,
A twilight scene at Kadambini Tea Estate planted long long ago by the colonial masters. Birds sang, the sun sank, and tribal men went hutwards. Standing on a pot holed street at Kadambini Tea Estate I saw the orange disc sinking on the horizon. Bikes whizzed past, and soiled the plants and me, The green tea leaves shrouded with thick layers of dust Tribal men paddling hutwards slow, some with dry hays and twigs, a few with wives and children in colourful dress on their back. Birds chirping, ah! heard such cacophonies never– Some coo, some che che che, ghrur
At Kunjanagar beside the potholed street stood I at blazing sunset lone. The orange cloudlets scattered the western horizon. Slowly evening descended, and tiny dew droplets began falling. The birds went home and stopped their songs and fell soon asleep. But a wayward parrot flicked in the air still. Later a full moon bathed the harvested field, and crickets sang incessant, and eyes feasted on fireflies’ dance round the bogs. Frogs croaked, and the clusters of stars hung heavy over me. The silence broken by the occasional barking of the dogs and motorcycles’ whiz. The air was heavy with scent
A gifted versetile writer who writes excellent stories and poems on the invisibles, pariahs, margins, aged, weaklings of our society. A rising star on the literary firmament.
“Your story Undersell left me with a lump in my throat, so did your poem, He also lights candles.”
"A finely honed observational piece recording the minutiae of everyday life. Rendered with the author’s customary poetic aplomb suffused with a Borges like quality of the mythic."