MY POEM ‘THE FIRST CHAPTER’ HAS BEEN PUBLISHED BY PIKER PRESS.

My poem entitled THE FIRST CHAPTER has been published by Piker Press.

I hope you like reading it and imbibing its essence of a relationship between two people and a child, the idea of the central couple being non-binary/ genderless occupying centrestage in its conception.

http://www.pikerpress.com/article.php?aID=8951

WINTER VOYAGERS

WINTER VOYAGERS was a poem that I published on my poetry collection WHISTLING CHIMES as part of my initial sojourn on the acclaimed writing community Wattpad, way back in 2015. It was among my first batch of poems and rest assured, there has been no looking back for me, thanks to the support of discerning and always consistent readers.

So it is a wonderful feeling to have it grace THE EKPHRASTIC REVIEW, based on a painting that depicts a winter setting. I’m thankful to the publication for rekindling the spark of one of my earliest writings.

So read it and share your thoughts.

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MY MORAL INGRESS- A POEM.

The poem created by me is based on a haunting and powerful image by Han van Meegeren.




My moral ingress
began with His hands on my forehead.
A loveless young woman,
in the custody of a natural passion,
fleeing from the one ordained as my keeper
to the one with the invisible halo.

Forbidden-
the lashes and stones in my name.
Reassuring-
the voice of the one who walks
among mortals.
Now,
Fates don’t intervene
and the reasoned audience with our
Messiah in flesh
keeps me safe.

   **

Let me say
this odyssey of comeuppance
should be my own birthright
and other kith and kin of my sex
must administer me clemency,
common sense
and fair judgement.

Drawing lines,
a woman’s morality,
even letting the slip of a word
with another man
without her conjugal chaperone in attendance,
is like some divine judgement,
jarring,
spineless.
The judgement from other men
turning Madonna into a fallen harlot.

So
in the name of the one who walks
amongst us,
The messianic one,
draw me to the lot
of my kindred’s breasts
and let them decide my course
when your congregation leaves town
and the lashes and stones return,
to exile me.

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ACT 1, SCENE 1 HAS BEEN PUBLISHED BY VISUAL VERSE.

Just like the wonderful amalgamation of imagery and words makes THE EKPHRASTIC REVIEW an ideal platform for creative writers like me, VISUAL VERSE adds more credibility to the pictorial urgency of the written output.

So I am very happy that my poem ACT 1, SCENE 1 has been published by VISUAL VERSE and accompanied or become adjunct with a haunting image. It is so rife with subtexts, contexts and possibilities. It’s, after all, about giving flight to one’s imagination.

So I urge you to behold the image/ painting/ artwork and read my interpretation of it. Share your thoughts about both.

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MY TWO POEMS HAVE GRACED A SPECIAL ISSUE OF BORDERLESS JOURNAL.

I’m very happy because the editorial team of BORDERLESS JOURNAL chose two of my poems to grace a special November issue commemorating REMEMBRANCE DAY.

Read them and share your thoughts. They go with my principle of choosing to write about issues I feel strongly about. So I hope they strike a chord with you all.

The poems can be read with the link below.

https://borderlessjournal.com/2021/11/11/soldiers-and-missives/

THE MASQUE FOR HALLOWEEN

Based on this undated painting from Scotland by an anonymous artist, I designed a poem around the interesting imagery, just in time for the season of Halloween.

I hope you like the tone and style of this piece.

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THE MASQUE FOR HALLOWEEN

The masque for Halloween
rings in a crucible for stereotypes,
the madness and the uncoordinated dance
just as splendid for the occassion
as the prosthetic noses
and pointed hats.


An inner voice still quivers with the words,
‘But is this cause for celebration,
all ‘ye noblewomen?’
seeing your own kindred
deformed in stature and looks,
made disgusting and ugly,
BIBHATSA
out on the cold stage,
twitching their lashes and body language,
with the natural lighting from candles and oil lamps quite the dampener already.
Like catching Salem in its heyday,
before the rebels were pronounced as witches.


The masks, the crypts and the holding up of bronzed skulls,
like Hamlet in his deadpan disposition,
does the aura no great novelty either.

Just then,
the young lady at the center of the performance
starts levitating
and secrets tumble out of her mouth
along with a sea of blood
and everybody calls her possessed,
affected by her afflictions
of make-believe
and vulnerable enough to give in
to the bold spectacle of misery
expected out of this nightly ritual.

And then the onlookers start dropping out of their seats,
passing out into some other world
and a banshee wail unites the others
until wave upon wave rises,
shadows of apparitions exiting from the window
and the room collapses in mid-dream.

The writer of this horror story
then wakes up with a start,
catches a breath
and decides to abandon the misogyny of the genre for another day.
Or to never return to the distortion of fantasy leveled at the subconscious.


Note: BIBHATSA refers to the disgusting and fearsome humour in Indian aesthetics.


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CONVERGENCE- ANOTHER STRIKING LOOK BACK AT TWO INTERTWINED SOULS.

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I had written and published CONVERGENCE two years ago. I reiterate this poem’s parallels between two iconic individuals in the light of the upcoming release of SPENCER starring Kristen Stewart as Lady Diana.

The binding thread here is director Pablo Larrain who had previously helmed the brilliant 2016 portrait of Jackie Kennedy titled JACKIE where Natalie Portman essayed the beleaguered first lady with understated elegance and pathos. It’s one of the works that has inspired me in multiple ways.

I mean I had written this work as a tribute to two women who, I felt, were like soul sisters. This is further attested by Mr. Larrain’s choice to bring their individual lives to the spotlight in complex interiority.

That also validates my own vision. So read it again and share your thoughts.

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CONVERGENCE



Just when the weight of the crown had extricated itself,
from the crime of almost snapping her neck,
A glass palace in her mind crashed.

a whirlwind of faraway drums tin-tinning in her head.
Cracking a crooked, dewy smile,
Keeping abreast of her tour of engagements.
Intent on remembering the last thing she said,
Everlasting pleasantry or just a peck on his cheek before tucking them to bed,
the kids and Jack.

BOOM

The Pacific waves crash at her side,
on the assassin’s pathway,
where compassion and her snubbed radiance were last heard walking on the beach,
talking over the politics of killing fields and nuclear disarmaments.

The
Jangling
Amoral ultraviolence
Cocking an inlet, cocksure
Kindling the final vulgarity of his death.
In her lap his brains lay splayed
Enjambing the poetic words that died on his beautiful head and shamed every father’s rifle.

Shots were fired at her that day,
Jackie was splayed wide open,
kissing dripping blood on entitlements of ‘ the most famous woman in the world’.

Shots
Boomeranged.
All her particulars memorialized on Love Field.

***********

Deftly walk in the hall,
my befuddled princess in the mirage.
What poise became yours even as conspiracy theories overtook your chambers.
What did it leave you with?
But a ‘ candle in the wind’ and a consolation from the windswept dust of Windsor.
A nominal title,
endangered privacies,
from cameras stationed like overhead helicopters that you loathed.
They smothered your wavelengths and still you delicately waved at each.

Is this the soft stereotype of womanhood
as it embraced you?
Or is it the unsaid, unfelt, tutored dignity that suppresses desires,
so what remains if ‘ worldly’ is your undertaking.
The mud of luxuries that you tread on
as the eyes, ears and spirit of England
and the cosmopolitan fluency of London that heroically consumed you overall.

Where was Diana in all this?
in the Distasteful heirarchy that she inherited
Instigated towards keeping appearances,
taking her part.
Another part in the violence of unfaithful kitchen sinks,
and Artful nose-diving in the cesspool of youth diminishing, with every act.
Acts of such force – fed maturities were those.
Where was the name in all this?
Her name blossoming with protrusions out of the headlines,
as ‘ the most famous woman in the world’.
But the swan like upper-crust had to remain,
the dignities of irony too
and the mere skeleton and cult of the good woman.

Diana had perished long ago in all this,
didn’t you see?

**********

all gloves and pearl necklaces
and fashionable decorum,
misogyny dreaded and smelt from a distance,
authority that shut you mum.
The cumulation of your burdened histories had to come to this?
But you gave them the middle path
and broached your own negotiations in individual links.
All your own
spurning the smug, crushed jewel of tradition.

Love Field at an angle,
Champs Elysees and Paris, bon vivant,
at the axis of correlation.
The pure acrostics of lives intertwined,
dissolving in the quicksilver flashes of death and registries of popular culture,
for better or worse,
with burnt historic hands dealt.

The fluid parallels
The bloodied shots in rear view.
Blessed be the spectre of thee,
bleeding womanhood supreme
and in gobsmacked tragedy,
never giving in to idolatry
or melancholy’s rush hour.

They are what they are,
huddled spirits in unison
for the ashen infidelity of men.
Two women conjoining fates in constant, equivocal flutters.

Till those car rides each
Thinking back to Time’s finest chronology,
descending in the flagrant history of blood.

Still.
All they accommodated were these :

free will and a life to cast out of those shadow lines,
giving away to the personality of eras,
a shroud of silences to enwrap itself in.
Long live the legend of thee.




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‘ candle in the wind’ refers to the iconic elegiac song by Sir Elton John that was dedicated to Diana.

GOLDEN LIGHT

The life-affirming image in the sky that inspired this poem.

There’s a time of day
to witness nature’s crown in the sky.
One can say with some honesty
that customary mornings
oftentimes
make the magic of incantatory forms
dissipate and not quite appear
as they do around sunset.

That’s the perfect point
to catch golden inflections.
When the curtain of light
opens itself.
When the evening clouds
are in repose
and no longer believe in spreading
their day-long expanse of lucid blue.

This particular day,
my eyes could see
a final blink from the sun,
appearing without any inhibition,
like melting butter,
as if the ancestors themselves
were purveyors of this beauty.

**

Such a canvas is somber.
The crows becoming incarnates
of the departed
and those stoic cows are at leisure,
patches of pleasant white and brown
with the green around them,
as I feed them
customary portions of the day’s feast.

Witnessing all this is the river
around whom a ministry of faith
rings in evening bell tolls
and distant incantations;
a sacred geometry since ancient awakenings.

This scenery,
with the sun soft and dappled with life,
a whole lineage reminisced in prayer,
build up the laws of life
and an almost incantatory mystery
is in all of this,
a mute songcraft only heard by a few.

The rituals of the day
and a reprieve to the soul
always bathed in golden light.

***

NOTE: this poem is based on the Hindu/ Indian tradition of Pitrapaksha, in which we pray for departed elders, preparing a vegetarian feast in their name and then offering portions of it to crows and cows, in sacred consonance with them being symbols of the soul, of the mortal world.
On such a day, I saw nature mingling with the somber mood of this observation.

Hence, the photograph above that I clicked and around which I have designed this poem.

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AFTER THE GOLD RUSH

From my early days as a kindergarten student, my teachers instilled in me a love and inclination towards images and words. Picture compositions, where one lets imagination fly high and explore the implicit and explicit details behind an image, always allowed me to excel in terms of creative manifestation. To this date, that early blueprint has helped me tremendously to construct worlds both real and imagined in my poetry.

EKPHRASTIC REVIEW is a publication that celebrates the same penchant for boundless creativity with its prolific output that expands our creative powers, with its sundry prompts based on artwork cutting across eras. All in the service of also facilitating an appreciation for art in general and the global cultural legacy in particular.

As all these aspects have always been dear to me, it’s my honour to have my poem AFTER THE GOLD RUSH, based on the prompt around Elin Danielson- Gambogi’s painting AFTER BREAKFAST, be published by EKPHRASTIC REVIEW. It’s my second publication on this platform this year. So it makes me very happy that my poem was chosen and placed among other highly worthy pieces. Most importantly, it helped me conjoin images and words in a cohesive whole and to be acknowledged for it gives me immense satisfaction.

So read the poem, look at the original painting and share your thoughts.

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