Thursday, 8 February 2018

Ghazal for February

There is a dog on the road looking up at the city every day
With eyes of a poem’s tireless wonder - I too try, every day

On Rani Jhansi road, the houses have been half demolished for years
Here, construction and livelihoods carry on every day

At the chowk as I pass birds pecking at busy grain
They plunge their hearts skyward, in uprising every day

The air we used to breath free turned fire, a February ago
When again will wind in Ramjas blow khulla every day?

Wave upon wave of injustice brings new battles to the fray
Harder are the oldest battles, to be fought again every day

So many sorrows wash to my doorstep, some dear and some faraway
Hardest are those that cannot be fought, only lived with every day.

Ananya, how will your city of memories survive the earthquake?
Force not a forgetting, or it will haunt its streets every day.

With thanks to Mukul sir for inspiring the fourth couplet

Photograph: Aryamaan Bose

Wednesday, 10 January 2018

Passing Red Fort

As the sun sets on
the (new built over
and over the old) city

the crags of the fort
rise to the clouds,
missing a few teeth

: there hangs in the air
the moment when
a brick


from its ranks

the street

or maybe 
half a
         l l
like a chunk of sky

and before the dust settles
with it   on the road
of a city
that has  already passed it

it stands, tall