Birthday scrapbook

IMG_4106Birthdays of annual pomp and blessings

of marching musical brass bands in ensemble

and delectable biscuit cakes in the fridge

Birthdays of perennial miracles and grace


Hors-d’oeuvre and a thousand treats

favors to return in magical bags

gladness of games and streaming balloons

Birthdays of annual pomp and blessings


Tunes to sing and songs to hum

presents galore and candles to curiously blow

gleeful smiles and sparkly spirits that soar

of marching musical brass bands in ensemble


in the house of in-toed toddler steps

and the home of doggy patter paws

at clubhouses with awkward boyish strides

and delectable biscuit cakes in the fridge


Remember and relish forever

then, the joys of candles bestowed

now, the prayers bough in from the skies

Birthdays of perennial blessings





my collection of cities



atlanta chicago new delhi hyderabad mt.abu kohima jalandhar patna boston and many others

bring to me dreams and shadows, crease lines of smiles and furrows near my brows, mischief music and sobering jolts, ideas that empower and distant tolling bells, waves of invigorating memories, meteoric force that propels blood to the edges of my pulse


you brought to me the vivacious stories written in marbles of gurushikhar and rock folds at sunset point

you held me in your nooks and crannies always pregnant with a mischievous mystery

each moment that was born near the lake lived with beauty that never did disappoint

charming both in your men and your looks, endearing stories of folklore and history


delivered a blessing that poured smiles into our souls and undeniable rhythm to our fold

secrets of nawabs huddled hesitant in minars

while the city knotted itself in anticipation of transcendent joys

a riot of gorgeous love came wrapped under the skin of his tiny fist holds

forever left enchanted; we visit  empty treasure troves and keep up a poise


she beguiled us with elegance and panoramic views

her crackling crisp demeanour initiated me to the world of words

roaming her streets was experimental youth who painted in motion and theater

were a delightful muse

Naga woman who defined heritage with her warrior like loom

weaving a humming design in honor of the orange breasted birds


let me call you a milestone memory

a perfection of pace that encouraged vibrant laughter

as grandparents fussed over the to be born grandson

an optimism that lulled us into a misty reverie

unbeknownst to us He was writing an ominous episode

never to be undone


you watched me grow into friendships

and threw at me gambles to bet my life upon

you enlightened me to find patterns in blurry dimensions

then encaptured me into puzzlements akin to layers of chiffon

new delhi

exhaled us with force into the world

meandering reams of opportunities , some perverse

a cacophony of life that often wondered

if there was an antidote to the textured curdle

haphazard prayers, holy books and urban tears

dripped into bottles of potent breath

that tasted like quartz


you of architectural prizes and glistening oasis of lakes

steadfast steel like in your support;

creating a circle of precious heart-throbs

with intricately speckled snowflakes

your orange flamed leaves of oaks and elms

nudged me out of ennui like a petulant escort


a saxophone of children with wings and wishes that whisper;

arrogant sidewalks watch as youth walks into schools

flippantly you toss your waves , quite chipper

bringing to me a glazing bonfire warmth

that lingers even when there is no more fuel


i sensed in you a resemblance to the chocolate chip cookie

in a daze lifting my hot chai and sipping into its comfort

your blue ridge mountains like handmade kites;

look over as you ramble along in sandals and hoodies

pirouettingly the ferris wheel beckons me to into its sunburst


i open the door

and walk into

the quiet full moon night

of my city

and then look far out

to others that resemble

those in the past

















the bleeding womb


I was surprised when

the walls around me tightened

Encasing life waiting to sprout

hope defined by the kicking gulps

soon to be crawling out

through the birth canal


9 months of playing entertainer in charge

culminate into an intense hormonal orchestra

I introduce the world through sounds

since there is no such thing as a womb with a view

I offer a theater like exposure

to the voices that tap at me

try my best to focus the curious ears

to notes of music and sounds of prayers

The life I hold

has dreams and fears

but a thumb suck

or placenta lick

is safe zone enough

It is a hectic 9 months

for me and my baby

as we build skills

and breathe and remember

I know my limits end

where yours start

and am quick to withdraw

as they nestle

the squirmy bundle

between your breasts

I do withdraw my walls

in relief but also

a nagging fear

of the world that

I give up the little soul to

by collaborating

in the event of birth


the intrauterine practice

of heart beats in pure oxygen

and absorption of your smells

is never ever enough

to prepare for that

to come in the outside

I have never figured out

how to help

the placenta

teach separation

or the fluids

feed tears

nor have I ever learned

to match the motion

in my lap to that of

the mother holding herself

and rocking in bereavement

for her son

nor have I been able to compare

the dilation of the cervix

as it opens to life

to that of the leery pupils

that dilate in flawed glances

towards the little girl


I caress the new life within me

closer to my blood

as I and he start a journey

and succumb yet again to hope

Withdrawing from my judgement

of mankind

so I can hold deep down

in myself a life that

is not compromised

till I have no choice

but to listen from the outside

to the desolate screams

of a Pradyuman or an Arushi


I cradle flawed life

for an exciting 9 months

I pulsate with divine mystery

and then

bequeath it to you

turning back to my void

I am not brave enough

to see you bid farewell

to the seedling I bore








genes played strong

towering over the pull of gravity

eyes ablaze at the illusion


just expressions

they gathered in the love of a land

waves of voices in protest


eyes wet in collective shock

acknowledge each other’s loss

walk in silent chains of arms


is a wonderful prayer

served in recuperating bowl fulls

with delicate cautious hands


in prose written, poetry said

mother saying not to forget

the longing for her dead


premise being evolution

loud, louder, loudest they shout

small stories spewed by big mouths


interwoven in border tales

threaded fears of legal stamps

dreams lingering like bookmarks


bleached in apprehension today

white washed walls stare in exhaustion

years of indecisiveness may end


is caricatured in shabbiness

narrow minds court hesitant history

hoisting into imminent chaos


rowing boats across highways

lingers at drenched post box pillars

aches on restless backs of responders


live the survivor’s guilt

looking skyward at disheveled reflections

of life, then proud of its copious humanity


modest moments of triumph

barring the amateurish clumsiness of power

humanity offers a formidable resilience


kaleidoscopic emotions

that mirror an abyss of memories

and bruised hopes
















Mavericks and Hurricanes


Hurricanes let loose

mavericks at play


hijacking lives out of homes

hashing out arbitary pardons

hosting criminal robes in hearts

not prisons

tranquility greeting torture

traumatizing storms through miles

tiring relentless political monotone

torn apart mankind by betrayal

of faith

Blinded by foggy venom

blowing winds closing in the devil

Bastardizing votes and forefather vision

bloodied flags hoisted and fluttering

in havoc

reflex manifesting in assault

rescue and repair operations at test

repeating recycled dramatics of greatness

repugnant antics in the name of God,

evil itself

status quo to status quo

nada – ‘ storm’ hits 130 mph on the southern coast

zilch – ‘trumps’ greatness on the floor of the House

zero – eradicating trust with ‘sacha sauda’


Status quo to status quo

hurricanes let loose

mavericks at play





Acceptance is
when you stop asking why
why becomes a lifelong gift
when luck is not about you
rather about him
when your focus shifts
from flight or fight to fulfillment
when love is the moment
your eyes meet
not satiation of yearning
rather continuation of yielding
it is letting go and letting in
promising to pursue
despite the pain
acceptance is when
you begin to listen
to the music in dissonance
when you fight
through your days
with fervor of worship
subscribe to doubts
and encourage the voice
that rises from within
when immersion into clouds
brings a feverish outpour
of sweet rain drops
when death does not
create listlessness
instead it opens doors
to new lives and languages
where strength is
the very nucleus
of vulnerability
and not an antonym
acceptance is leveling
hukm is beautifully obvious
you are
hukm becomes yours

as much
as you
let go
and as deep
as you
echo yourself

in and from his hukm

*hukm – the divine will


finding poems in bazaars


Farmers markets

Formula shopping
taking a break
to touch, feel, talk
bountiful sights
encourage a break
stir up sensibilities

Farmers markets
baskets with strawberry
luscious and anticipative
the onion skins itself
on the cobbled walkway
pleasingly purple and crisp
fried potato’s lean into
the air,a concoction
of self-indulgent treats
pancake stalls make concessions
to pointless chatter, families
tugging at heart-strings
relishing the bubbling maple

Farmers markets

in tryst with life
clutching to the earth
yielding yet to it

ready to serve at the altar
of homes, fragrance, color, texture

to become stories


Garage sales
luck and love on shelves
discovery and dramatics
rehearsed negotiation
observation of flaws
each piece an attestation
to letting go, each selection
a proof of usefulness
things, offer an ever evolving
attachment paradigm


Garage sales

the baby crib was
not a need, after
the miscarriage
the picnic basket
rattled with laughter
from memorable trips
the painting packed
because their home
was on short sale
the jacket , a swag
from marathon events, monogrammed
before he took to
the wheelchair
the baking set served
kitchen tables with love
the brooch pinned fur collars
now sat next to a boxed watch
wondering if someone would pause
the golf clubs erect with pride
having served many practice holes
the silverware collection
still flawless as it reflected
curious finger marks
the wedding veil
carefully beaded with a fringe
a small tear, that corner
where the father of the bride
had clumsily stepped upon

Garage sales

treasures, tears and thoughts
fragile in hope
quivering in readiness
to move on

retrace steps, redesign lives
and offering themselves

to not be things