LOSS

MARIA

To Maria who is Here and Nowhere..

When I lost you, Maria
that fateful day
I lost myself too,
till eternity
But then,
to live was to be with Maria,
forever.
So I rose from my ashes ,
ancient yet new,
And you came to life,
to be with me
forever!

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SHYAMALI POEMS

SHYAMALI RETURNS

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A patch of early autumn sun
falls on the stone and boulder wall,
green with moss and tiny ferns,
A lonely mountain bird dives
and glides up in the grey – blue sky.
She sits with a  lost- in- woods look in her eyes,
(Your eyes are touched with gold, honey!  He used to say)
Silence of yester years shivers with hows and whys!

Echoes of past fade in the crunch of autumn leaves,
brown and red,  dry and crisp beneath his feet,
She sees a cloud of shadow settle on his face,
Pain has its own terrible beauty, a tragic grace,
a gentle fire that licks the soul
slowly, steadily, silently,
till you forget how and when you lost yourself,
where on the way?

Their glances meet , searching yet withdrawn
his eyes, grey as raven, hers, all fawn,
He reads all writings in her eyes,
Where speech fails, eyes say it all,
More salt than pepper in his hair now,
(how her heart skips a beat to see,)
and his eyes , a fathom less deep.
Her eyes are silent pools of pain, her hands are bare,
(Where’s her bracelet, that keepsake ? He stares)

Darkness drops in , unannounced,
She wraps her shawl around , he tries to look away,
(When he thought he had so much to say?)
Soul less  journeys run a flashback show,
For all we know, silent wars are fought in mind ,
How many breaths does it take to heal a grieving heart?
How many years does it take to mend an aching hurt?
So few years lie ahead, so few breaths left,
Before we step into the valley where the sun never sets,
Past is a city of  pain, we’ve long been there, let’s be fair.

Come home, Shyamali,  it’s never too late to return.
Hold my hand lest fireflies of hope fade away forever.

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QUEST

THE SEEKERS

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When you plunged headlong
into the furious river in flood
how could you remain unscathed?
My son! You contemplated suicide of sorts!
The Master shook his head in consternation.

The disciple, battered with battling with elements,
was young and raw and restless,
still growing a fine line of mustache.
His youthful face betrayed a raw solemn energy,
an unquenchable thirst for knowledge,
an urgent quest for truth,
“How else could I come to you then?O Holy Sage!
No boatman was there to ferry me across,
I knew not how to face those furious waves
smothered was I by the river in spate.
I plunged and resurfaced for a breath or two
to search, to discover, and to know
the essence of life!

The Master in deep reflective mood, inquired:
“So this is what brings you here, my son!
All the way from the distant land?
“I have three questions to ask”, said the youth.
What is Life? What is Death?
What causes suffering?Tell me, O Sage! the Truth.
His eyes burnt bright with passion,
and emotions too deep to fathom!

Profound queries, my child, you seek answers to
unresolved questions with no fixed answers,
Sages and seekers of various hues and shades
arrived at their own conclusion,
but who could tell the essence of existence!
How can i enlighten you
when I am a seeker, too!
For years together i have mulled over them,
even rued over them, slept over them,
grown old with them, and will die with them.
The Sage was distraught, as he fought
with himself, with a mind that was seeking
In vain, like a candle half spent , still burning in pain!

Young man! In you i have discovered Life at its reckless best,
and a seeking spirit that is not tamed by Fire
In you i find an answer to Death
for you have transcended time and desire,
In you i see a stoic detachment to human suffering,
In you i have found answers that you sought from me,
In you i have found the Truth,
I have found all these answers in you!

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SILENCE

SILENCE

When Silence tiptoed behind softly and
touched me on my weary shoulder,
I looked behind to find a stranger
But saw my friend instead ,
though a wee bit older.

Oh Silence! Long time, buddy!
I cheered up as I said
though I saw the face stiffen
I reckon , was it because of rage?
I read her face, like I often did
with my eyes closed shut.
The script of silence like the braille
I read with my moving fingers.
She stood askance and stared at me
(Was it a spate of stingers?)
I saw her fade and melt away
before I could reach and hold her!

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SHYAMALI POEMS

SHYAMALI POEMS

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I

SHYAMLI RETURNS

O Shyamali!

You’ve been away too long,

far too long to bear,

(Do  I still call you my own?)

Come Shyamali,

be with  me awhile,

lest dark shadows overwhelm my  night

and fireflies of hope  fade away forever.

Shield me with your eyes

so that I may feast upon the joy

to see you each moment.

Restore to me

the  joy of remembering

your touch on my  bare skin.

Allow me to sing

the  songs  that I  had once longed  to sing.

Be kind to me, O Shyamali

for I shudder to be  in the dark once again!

O Shyamali!

You’ve been away too long

Too long to bear,

Be with  me awhile

before dark shadows overwhelm my  night

and fireflies fade away forever!

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YEARNING

THAT YEARNING!

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A lost seashell

pale and translucent

half hidden in sand!

I hold the seashell up to my ear

Till I hear and feel

the call of the deep,

the song of the sea,

The yearning!

Liquid fingers touch

the brooding silence,

The last- heard song

hides in meandering echoes.

And the unfathomable Blue

rises and falls within the shell.

Why so? Who knows the Secret?

The Waves return,

the roar rolls against the shore

“Let one great longing

meet another” ..

And the rising waves

claim the shell again!

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