A Poem – Majeed Amjad


Sons, my native land has sons
born on soil
barren and rocky and lone
for ages lone
across the gaping wilderness tear
ruthless winds and torrents of pain
sweep in epochs.
sweep them out.

Sons of mountains
radiant petals of jasmine gay
specks of time-less age-less rocks
elegant, fair and tender moulds
lumps of leathern coarsened hearts
damned by sun and wind and time
dashed from tops.
they seek a home
lost in dust beneath their feet

On a heap of squalid unscrubbed pans
immersed in simmering scalding water
the toiling sweating hands do seek
the blessed home
for ages they have thought and dreamed.

In towns flourshing
along the banks of mountain brooks
stays a-while
a fleeting cloud of gloom.
.
.
.
.
.
.
The Home!
and from an urban sheeted roof
curls into waves of trailing smoke.

The brook is limpid murmuring gold
the smoke is trailing meandering gold
the killers are killers
of conscience grace and candid souls
if ever they marked
the wave of anguish
a dash, a span
among the torrents of water and sweat
the rocks in hearts
the dark sinister rocks would fall.

I Do Not Care About Social Norms – Mirabai

I will fasten the bells of his love to my feet
And dance in front of Girdhar.
Dancing and dancing I will please his eyes;
My love is an ancient one.
My love is the only truth.

I do not care about social norms
Nor do I keep my family’s honour.
I cannot forget, even for a moment,
The beauty of my lover.
I am dyed in Hari’s colour.

Illusion And Reality – Kabir

What is seen is not the Truth
What is cannot be said
Trust comes not without seeing
Nor understanding without words
The wise comprehends with knowledge
To the ignorant it is but a wonder
Some worship the formless God
Some worship His various forms
In what way He is beyond these attributes
Only the Knower knows
That music cannot be written
How can then be the notes
Says Kabir, awareness alone will overcome illusion

brooding love – vidyapati thakur

Madhava:
Your moon-faced love
Had never guessed
That parting hurts.
Radha is tortured,
Dreading you will leave.
Love has robbed her of all power,
She sinks clasping the ground.

Kokilas call,
Startled, she wakes
Only to brood again.
Tears wash the make-up
From her breasts.
Her arms grow thin,
Her bracelets slide to the ground.
Radha’s head droops in grief.
Her fingers scar the earth
Bleeding your name.

poem – someone silence that bird

Someone silence that bird; he doesn’t leave me alone!
He is sent by the Creator himself
To shoot the arrows of desolation at me!
Someone silence that bird; he doesn’t leave me alone!

His cry is so beautiful, he cries in the middle of the night
He is no songster; he is a wicked bird
Who kills even those who are already dying!
Someone silence that bird; he doesn’t leave me alone!

It is already dark night, and on top of it, the lightening flashes!
The heart of the maiden separated from her love sinks.
Someone silence that bird; he doesn’t leave me alone!

How shall the night pass when the chataka is singing?
And what will happen if the dawn passes away too
Without Narsaiyya’s lord?
Someone silence that bird; he doesn’t leave me alone!

poem – greetings

Message from returning Rama, Vanars to Ayodhya brought,
Righteous Bharat gave his mandate with a holy joy distraught:

‘Let our city shrines and chaityas with a lofty music shake,
And ourpriests to bright Immortals grateful gifts and offerings make,

Bards, reciters of Puranas, minstrels versed in ancient song,
Women with their tuneful voices lays of sacred love prolong,

Let our queens and stately courtiers step in splendour and in state,
Chieftains with their marshalled forces range along the city gate,

And our white-robed holy Brahmans hymn and sacred mantras sing.
Offer greetings to our brother, render homage to our king!’

Brave Satrughna heard his elder and his mandate duly kept:
‘Be our great and sacred city levelled, cleansed, and duly swept,

And the grateful earth be sprinkled with the water from the well,
Strewn with parchéd rice and offering and with flower of sweetest smell,

On each turret, tower, and temple let our flags and colours wave,
On the gates of proud Ayodhya plant Ayodhya’a banners brave,

Gay festoons of flowering creeper home and street and dwelling line,
And in gold and glittering garment let the gladdened city shine.

Elephants in golden trappings thousand chiefs and nobles bore.
Chariots, cars, and gallant chargers speeding by Sarayu’s shore,

And the serried troops of battle marched with colours rich and brave,
Proudly o’er the gay procession did, Ayodhya’s banners wave.

In their stately gilded litters royal dames and damsels came,
Queen Kausalya first and foremost, Queen Sumitra rich in fame,

Pious priest and learned Brahman, chief of guild from near and far,
Noble chief and stately courtier with the wreath and water jar.

Girt by minstrel, bard, and herald chanting glorious deeds of yore,
Bharat came,-his elder’s sandals still the faithful younger bore,-

Silver-white his proud umbrella, silver-white his garland brave,
Silver-white the fan of chowri which his faithful henchmen wave,

Stately march of gallant chargers and the roll of battle car,
Heavy tread of royal tuskers and the beat of drum of war,

Dundubhi and echoing sankha, voice of nations gathered nigh,
Shook the city’s tower and temple and the pealing vault of sky!

Sailing o’er the cloudless ether Rama’s Pushpa chariot came,
And ten thousand jocund voices shouted Rama’s joyous name,

Women with their loving greetings, children with their joyous cry,
Tottering age and lisping infant hailed the righteous chief and high.

Bharat lifted up his glances unto Rama from afar,
Unto Sita, unto Lakshman, seated on the Pushpa car,

And he wafted high his greetings and he poured his pious lay,
As one wafts the chaunted mantra to the rising God of Day!

Silver swans by Rama’s bidding soft descended from the air,
And on earth the chariot lighted,-car of flowers divinely fair,-

Bharat mounting on the chariot, sought his long-lost elder’s grace,
Rama held his faithful younger in a brother’s dear embrace.

With his greetings unto Lakshman, unto Rama’s faithful dame,
To Bibhishan and Sugriva and each chief who thither came,

Bharat took the jewelled sandals with the rarest gems inlaid,
Placed them at the feet of Rama and in humble accents said:

‘Tokens of thy rule and empire, these have filled thy royal throne,
Faithful to his trust and duty Bharat renders back thine own,

Bharat’s life is joy and gladness, for returned from distant shore,
Thou shalt rule thy spacious kingdom and thy loyal men once more,

Thou shalt hold thy rightful empire and assume thy royal crown,
Faithful to his trust and duty, Bharat renders back thine own,

poem – innocent heart

Innocent heart, what has happened to you?
Alas, what is the cure to this pain?

We are interested, and they are displeased,
Oh Lord, what is this affair?

I too possess a tongue-
just ask me what I want to say.

Though there is none present without you,
then oh God, what is this noise about?

I expected faith from those
who do not even know what faith is.

Poem – Dirty Game

Blaring voice and strong signal came
Message from boy aging 9 for playing game
What game early in the morning dear son?
My uncle/auntie has wished you chase and run

You are so small and playing on somebody’s behalf, I said
“Not thinking of even your better half
You are supporting your poems on other’s name
For getting good name and earn the fame” he said

Is it not good to have many members in family?
Who has suggested you to ask the questions silly? I questioned
He was tutored to speak the language of mature
We can think at the age of nine what he has the future

This is how people are let loose and make messages
Is it the only way to find the top passage?
Why not they choose creative path and best usage?
Whole life will be wasted with the advancement of age

I have faced the bitter test of language
Unusual methods worth throwing in garbage
Still they claim the custodian of heritage?
Have they not gone berserk and mentally enraged?

Let this poem hunter be only hunting ground
New talents with innovative ideas should be found
Scrap or throw them who have nothing to offer
Let there be thousands of ideas and thoughts to differ

They have easy access to bio dates and inlet
It will be their Endeavour not anybody to let
What is here to gain and loose?
Path is open for them to go or choose?

Nothing will emerge except dirt and mud
It is utter nonsense and not at all good
Let there be discontinuance of grading system
Only entry with poems and wait for response esteem

The Bhakti Path – Kabir 

The bhakti path winds in a delicate way. 

On this path there is no asking and no not asking. 

The ego simply disappears the moment you touch 

him. 

The joy of looking for him is so immense that you 

just dive in, 

and coast around like a fish in the water. 

If anyone needs a head, the lover leaps up to offer 

his.

Poem – Friends In Misfortune – Valmiki 

Long and loud lamented Rama by his lonesome cottage door, 

Janasthana’s woodlands answered, Panchavati’s echoing shore, 
Long he searched in wood and jungle, mountain crest and pathless plain, 

Till he reached the Malya mountains stretching to the southern main. 
There Sugriva king of Vanars, Hanuman his henchman brave, 

Banished from their home and empire lived within the forest cave, 
To the exiled king Sugriva, Hanuman his purpose told, 

As he marked the pensive Rama wand’ring with his brother bold: 
‘Mark the sons of Dasa-ratha banished from their royal home, 

Duteous to their father’s mandate in these pathless forests roam, 
Great was monarch Dasa-ratha famed for sacrifice divine, 

Raja-suya, Aswa-medha, and for gift of gold and kine, 
By a monarch’s stainless duty people’s love the monarch won, 

By a woman’s false contrivance banished he his eldest son! 
True to duty, true to virtue, Rama passed his forest life, 

Till a false perfidious Raksha stole his fair and faithful wife, 
And the anguish-stricken husband seeks thy friendship and thy aid, 

Mutual sorrow blends your fortunes, be ye friends in mutual need! ‘ 
Bold Sugriva heard the counsel, and to righteous Rama hied, 

And the princes of Ayodhya with his greetings gratified: 
‘Well I know thee, righteous Rama, soul of piety and love, 

And thy duty to thy father and thy faith in God above, 
Fortune favours poor Sugriva, Rama courts his humble aid, 

In our deepest direst danger he our truest friendship made! 
Equal is our fateful fortune,-I have lost a queenly wife, 

Banished from, Kishkindha’s empire here I lead a forest life, 
Pledge of love and true alliance, Rama, take this proffered hand, 

Banded by a common sorrow we shall fall or stoutly stand.! ‘ 
Rama grasped the hand lie offered, and the tear was in his eye, 

And they swore undying friendship o’er the altar blazing high, 
Hanuman with fragrant blossoms sanctified the sacred rite, 

And the comrades linked by sorrow walked around the altar’s light, 
And their word and troth they plighted: ‘In our happiness and woe 

We are friends in thought and action, we will f ace our common foe! ‘ 
And they broke a leafy Sal tree, spread it underneath their feet, 

Rama and his friend Sugriva sat upon the common seat, 
And a branch of scented Chandan with its tender blossoms graced, 

Hanuman as seat of honour for the faithful Lakshman placed. 
‘Listen, Rama,’ spake Sugriva, ‘reft of kingdom, reft of wife, 

Fleeing to these rugged mountains I endure a forest life, 
For my tyrant brother Bali rules Kishkindha all alone, 

Forced my wife from my embraces, drove me from my father’s throne, 
Trembling in my fear and anguish I endure a life of woe, 

Render me my wife and empire from my brother and my foe! ‘ 
‘Not in vain they seek my succour,’ so the gallant Rama said, 

‘Who with love and offered friendship seek my counsel and my aid, 
Not in vain these glistening arrows in my ample quiver shine, 

Bali dies the death of tyrants, wife and empire shall be thine! 
Quick as INDRA’S forkéd lightning are these arrows feather-plumed, 

Deadly as the hissing serpent are these darts with points illumed, 
And this day shall not be ended ere it sees thy brotherfall, 

As by lurid lightning severed sinks the crest of mountain tall! ‘

Poem -Space Cake, Amsterdam – Yuyutsu Sharma

“Don’t panic,” they said, 

remain cool like your Krishna, 

meditate maybe like Buddha, 

uttering ‘Om Mani Padme,’ jewel in the lotus, 

or lie down and relax 

like Vishnu on the python-bed 

to float on the ocean’s currents, 

buoyant on the invisible thread 

of your breath in slow motion… 
Millions of cats prowled around me. 

Smoke from shared sex 

and hashish joints stung my eyes. 

Unsettling tongue 

of an awkward fire fed my stomach. 

I skidded queasily towards 

towards the formidable edge, 

unknown ominous frontiers of human life… 
They laughed a secret laugh 

behind my back – “Isn’t it crazy that 

this man from Kathmandu should get stoned 

from a piece of space cake in Amsterdam?” 
“Don’t be serious, laugh, 

celebrate the flame of life!” a woman’s voice said. 

“Hold my hand; I can imagine 

you are alone on this trail. 

I’v been there once,” she whispered. 

Her tongue curled like a dry leaf in my ear 

and crackled “How much did you take, 

just a piece? I took thirty-eight grams once, 

It can be crazy if you don’t know it’s coming. 

Just don’t worry too much. 

Don’t lose your control over things. 

You can kiss me if you like, 

You can pat my back, 

tickle my belly or stroke my breasts 

for a while, if it comforts you. 

Sometimes it can be heavenly, 

this licking the rim of the forbidden frontiers of human life. 
“That’s what he wants, that’s exactly 

what he’s looking for,” a voice leered far off. 

“But I have to go ultimately, 

I’ve a man waiting at home for me.” 
“Maybe read a poem of yours,” 

someone said. My heart raced wild 

and I heard some-girls gossip in the next room— 

What if he gets sick in Europe? 

Don’t we get sick in Asia? 

“Just take it easy,” another voice echoed 

“You won’t go psychotic. Remember one thing, 

whatever happens, you can always make a comeback.”

Faces of my dear ones veered past my face. 

I felt delicate thread of my life 

slipping through my fingers 

“Hey man, it’s fine. Don’t worry too much.” 

My host shouted. “Drink lots of water.” 

Drink black tea or coffee,” a guest suggested. 

“Or take lots of orange juice.” 

“Maybe sing your favorite song,” a woman said. 

“Or recite one of your Hindu mantras.” 

“Maybe stick your finger into your throat” 

another voice came sheepishly, “And throw up. 

You probably haven’t digested everything yet.” 
Questions came like wind slaps. 

“Can you tell me what they call boredom 

in your mother tongue? Do you remember 

your email account and password? 

Discuss your children, if you have any. 

Shall I bring my little daughter before you? 

Maybe you’d feel better then, 

seeing her brilliant eyes.” 
I imagined a child’s face and clung to it, 

like a penitent would hold onto 

a sacred cow’s tail in his afterlife, 

and slept on it, all through the river of blood… 
Hours passed by 

and then I heard someone say— 

What if he had freaked out? 

What if Death had stalked our house tonight? 
Hearing these words, I woke up 

knowing I’d come back, stepped on 

the familiar shores of life 

where Death’s feared, a distant distrustful thing. 

My drowse burst like a glacial that cracks 

from rumble of a seed of fire 

that explodes somewhere in earth’s deep sleep.

Poem – Dark Friend, what can I say? – Mirabai 

Mirabai 1498 - 1546  Kudki , India

Mirabai
1498 – 1546
Kudki , India


Dark Friend, What Can I Say?This love I bring 

from distant lifetimes is ancient, 

do not revile it. 

Seeing your elegant body 

I am ravished. 

Visit our courtyard, hear the women 

singing old hymns 

On the square I’ve laid 

out a welcome of teardrops, 

body and mind I surrendered ages ago, 

taking refuge 

wherever your feet pass. 

Mira flees from lifetime to lifetime, 

your virgin. 

Poem – Leili – Sarojini Naidu 

The serpents are asleep among the poppies, The fireflies light the soundless panther’s way 

To tangled paths where shy gazelles are straying, 

And parrot-plumes outshine the dying day. 

O soft! the lotus-buds upon the stream 

Are stirring like sweet maidens when they dream. 

A caste-mark on the azure brows of Heaven, 

The golden moon burns sacred, solemn, bright 

The winds are dancing in the forest-temple, 

And swooning at the holy feet of Night. 

Hush! in the silence mystic voices sing 

And make the gods their incense-offering.

Poem – Hope for Him – Kabir 

O friend! hope for Him whilst you live, know whilst you live, understand whilst you live: for in life deliverance abides. 

If your bonds be not broken whilst living, what hope of 

deliverance in death? 

It is but an empty dream, that the soul shall have union with Him 

because it has passed from the body: 

If He is found now, He is found then, 

If not, we do but go to dwell in the City of Death. 

If you have union now, you shall have it hereafter. 

Bathe in the truth, know the true Guru, have faith in the true 

Name! 

Kabîr says: ‘It is the Spirit of the quest which helps; I am the slave of this Spirit of the quest

Poems – Wandering Singers – Sarojini Naidu 

WHERE the voice of the wind calls our wandering feet, Through echoing forest and echoing street, 

With lutes in our hands ever-singing we roam, 

All men are our kindred, the world is our home. 

Our lays are of cities whose lustre is shed, 

The laughter and beauty of women long dead; 

The sword of old battles, the crown of old kings, 

And happy and simple and sorrowful things. 

What hope shall we gather, what dreams shall we sow? 

Where the wind calls our wandering footsteps we go. 

No love bids us tarry, no joy bids us wait: 

The voice of the wind is the voice of our fate.