Tag Archives: poems

Radiohead, You And Me.

We reminded me

Of Radiohead songs

In the manner with

Which, we swayed

Against the tide of

The several instruments,

Soft and mellow, one

Second, and blaring

Our beings, to each

Other’s naked ears,

In another. Tracing

Words and worlds

That spelled

D E V E S T A T I O N

In oddly placed

Riffs and refrains,

Upon our bare and

Corroded chests

With our chilly, bony

Fingers, making each

Other bleed verses

That could only succeed

As songs of defeat –

In love.

RADIOHEAD_THE+BENDS-57397

Radiohead, Danny Clinch, 1994.

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Finality.

2016 was a wild ride. I’ve tried to capture some of the confusion and most of the love and beauty. I haven’t succeeded, evidently. Regardless, I’ve organized the poem to reflect the trajectory of the year. It begins with endless essays to colleges abroad and ending up at Ramjas College, North Campus and continues to discuss leaving high-school and high-school friends behind and finding my people and home in Delhi.


Change. Five alphabets and a single syllable. But it weighs much more on the tip of my tongue as it rolls off with innocent hesitation. It weighs as much as five years worth of dreams and aspirations, lulled to sleep in a foreign language and wrapped in an ancient wrapping paper, which has its corners bitten off because of a sudden termite infestation, and carefully placed in a silken envelope, addressed to one place, but received at another because somewhere on their way, the envelope was exchanged and its diaphanous contents disheveled for a public humiliation. It weighs as much as their initial discontent, bewilderment, and lumbering satisfaction.

 

Changement. A word from the language of aromatic delight, on the first puff, reeks of nothing but an impermanent banality, but on further zealous inspection, on nights of intoxicated revelry, unfurls itself in layers of olfactory surprise with a base note gravid with the scent of forgotten promises of forevers, infinities and harmless adolescent debauchery, a heart note that narrates tales of four misfit children and their frivolous and juvenile camaraderie and a top note that reminds the perfumed and the perfumers of happy goodbyes and transatlantic flights.

 

परिवर्तन. Spoken with each of the superfluous curves and ridges enunciated with care and dealt with a heightened sense of fragility, feels rough against my skin as it passes me by, but whenever I implore it to sit and chat for awhile, it says the final au revoir by leaving impressions of blank canvases, on my emaciated body, behind. On his rather haughty nights 一 like the thirty-first of December 一 he paints them in an artistic frenzy with scenes of an unlikely reunion, in which I run into a piece of my being that I had never intended to find again or acknowledge as a part of my entirety on unsuspecting roads and at guileless shacks where cantankerous old men lounge around between piles of shit and purple dreams.

 

Yesterday night, as Luna mounted her pearly chariot

 with an uncommon grace and a singular sense

of closure and finality, I was relentlessly reminded

of my own mortality and that no matter how

I chose to spell it, Change has always been by

my side like a lover from the days that have

passed and I’m finding hard to let go of.

 

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Onomatopoeia

At breakfast,

you read to me, from your favorite newspaper,
articles about intended duplicity. The World was
quiet for the Dawn to unfold, in its mellifluous
entirety, and the only sounds I could make out, in
my state of hungover reverie, were,

 

your muffled sighs, hmm and ch ch ch, escaping your chapped lips like the whispered whistle of my antique electric-kettle, expressing your discontent with the unlikely turn-of-events that haunt the modern World,

 

your words, de-st-ruc-tion and car-na-ge, carefully let out, each syllable, made love to, uttered with affection and regal gentility, with due care afforded to each of their individual fragilities, like baby birds, unfurling their wings and chasing the dawn for the first time,

 

and, the gentle tapping of your feet, tak.tak.tak, on our concrete floors, like morning dew, falling, leisurely, on dried and withered autumn leaves

 

and, the clatter of your teeth,(it was slightly chilly) a monotonous tone with no ups and down, like the clamor of those thousand pairs of feet, rushing for the first metro, trying to avoid the curse of traffic and imminent banality,

 

and, the crunch of bread under a blunt butter knife and a melted condiment, shining in morning shades of amber, just as in verse and rhythm as the drowsy and cursory pleasantries of children being dragged to school at ungodly hours,

 

and, the rustling of the cheap recycled paper stuck in between your sweaty thumb and index finger, the rustle of leaves from the first gush of the wind that heralds a new Spring every December, and,

the beating of my heart against its bony cage,

nothing but a silent observer.

 

It was then that I decided if you were ever to be

a figure of speech, you, darling, would be Onomatopoeia.

 

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An alternate ending.

She took a train to a place unknown and laughed till her stomach hurt.
Danced till her feet were numb and made castles with the dirt.

He boarded a flight without knowing where he would arrive.
A backpack on his shoulders and a satchel on his side.
He felt relieved and well, he felt alive.

On the train she met a person unknown and talked to him all that she could.
She did talk to strangers, becoming the Red Riding Hood.
But, this time around the wolf wasn’t bad,
he showed her the World and made her lust like mad.

Lust for maps and lust for the sand.
Lust for places unknown while he always held her hand.

On the flight he learned a language new.
known by him and only a few.
The language of the sky and the wind that blew.
He felt alive, fresh as the dew.

The wolf wasn’t lazy,
Red wasn’t hazy.
They danced together and both of them were crazy.

Crazy for the woods and paths unknown.
Strange carpenters and fake lamenters.
They wanted to talk and they wanted to meet,
shiver in the cold and sweat in the heat.

Red Riding hood didn’t fear the wild, walked up-strong and well ate the apple pie,
She didn’t regret taking the train to a place unknown.
Her wolf made her loathe the mundane and the known.

While the charming prince flew in the sky,
he realized the importance of evergreen goodbyes.

Two people with their lives entangled,
written in storybooks with an entire different ending.
But this time around they chose not to blend in.
the Prince flew away and well the Red Riding hood chose not to be strangled.


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