Monday, October 27, 2014


tr. from Uday Prakash's "दिन"

A frail ox
is panting.

Sweat is shining
on his muscles,
and from his tired nostrils,
white froth
is falling.

White froth,
now covers
the whole field.

Uday Prakash


tr. from Uday Prakash's Hindi poem 'मारना'

After he dies,
he thinks

After he dies,
he speaks

When he does not
think or speak,
he dies.

Uday Prakash

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Morbid morning poem

New neighbours moved in,
they are young, they sing
till three in the morning,
I try to catch a wink, still
they continue to think
-- and so I wish could I --
that they will never die.

What kind of selfishness is this

No salt no sugar in your kiss
What kind of selfishness is this
Your love's now old, amiss
What kind of selfishness is this

tr. from Amitabh Bhattacharya's "Kaisi teri khudgarzi" in Kabira

Monday, October 6, 2014

He looks up, is it prayer,

he looks down, is he shy,
looks askance, does he dare,
looks away, and I die.

(translation from Javed Akhtar, version)

"Nazar Unchi Kari To Dua Ban Gayi
Nazar Neechi Kari To Haya Ban Gayi
Nazar Tirchhi Kari To Adaa Ban Gayi
Nazar Pher Li To Qaza Ban Gayi" - Javed Akhtar, version.

Friday, October 3, 2014

Haji Ali

is like Bombay flying a kite in the sea,

and standing by its side,
- water, like creepers, grows
on stones - you see the high tide
happen under your feet.

This is the magic spot where
six hundred years before,
the saint's coffin, adrift, smooth
like ivory, white like bone,
came back from the Arabian sea.

This is the magic spot
where that couple from Borivali
meets, sits together;
the waves rise and come
to keep them,
but still, somehow, leave them
to themselves,
the rock dark-grey-wet
around them the world yet
they sit on noon-stone
- now ivory under the sea -