Earth roots


 A leg stretched, the other bent

 he lies sprawled on her muddy curves

 their wetness, a drop away

 grassy intrusions tickling his sides

 softening rough edges

His head buried contentedly in her

 though she has pushed him out partially

 into the sunlight

 His green burdens branding their shadows

 upon him

 as he stretches further in his quest

 to fulfill their needs too.

©Reena Prasad 5th October 2012

Cloud swirls


 Soft swirls of snow clouds

 inch towards an aurulent ledge

 Tiny eyes of civilization

 blink and stare in awe

 Wearing a dressing gown of fog,

 Dawn reaches out to Day

 yearning for all the glorious colours

 she missed

 while in the embrace of Night.

©Reena Prasad 3rd October 2012

Wanderlust


Finally

I reach the end point

from where the road seems clear

yet vision blurs

 

The path that brought me up

lies below

sometimes arcane

some parts straight

The bends where reason stumbled

seem childish from this far away.

 

Vague uneasiness floats around

like wisps of Indian milkweed

No more do peaks refute

but the zenith is a lonely place

and in its silence, a breeze proclaims

nothing is ever absolute…

 

Goat paths cannot resist grassing over

proud peaks succumb to earthly tugs

A nomadic spirit remains

A lone tenant sans any walls

 

The song that plays in the wind’s harp

echoes in these valleys with mellow lyrics

softened by the loneliness Time brings with it

Footsteps erased yet delicate shadows nod

a timeless, alluring invite.

 

The only lines that remain unerased

are the ones that I have drawn

to keep myself safe

from the omnipresent gypsy

chained inside my wanderlust soul.

 ©Reena Prasad August 2012

Wings


 In the stillness of a moonless night
 a thought takes off in search of a fragrance
 flitting noiselessly from the shadow of a tree
 to the bench that once was bathed with love
 No moon unveils itself to show it the way
 to the valley where it had once slept
 among some flowers of hope..
 It wanders up the night sky,
 resting briefly on a floating cloud
 too fragile to bear its mournful weight
 As the night moves towards a silvery dawn
 the orphan returns home
 to the sleepless cove
 from where it often flies
 in search of a lost scent.
© Reena

when dawn comes


The night train chugs dreamily into a green morning
making its way over little bridges
sleeping over backwaters
that have seeped into villages
The old man in his blue, plastic chair
with a newspaper, the stamp of a reading state
on the verandha of a house flying past
His daughter washing the blackened pots
in the little pond behind the grove of tall, silent palms
that reach to touch the silvery wisps of dawn
All is dewy, all is green
as the tender morning sun dries the night rain
but cares not about the inner drizzle
in a land silent with unsaid thoughts
where love is the language that arrack speaks
and beauty languishes somewhere
between snores and wet dreams

©Reena Prasad

Waiting for Kalki


Waiting for Kalki

Reclining against the cold Himalayas, she waits
Her sobs reverberating above the muezzin calls and hymns
Aarti blazes at dusk meet haloed altar candles
yet fail to illuminate her weeping pipe dreams.
Her aura reduced to a flickering flame
Oh where are you Kalki? Still playing the waiting game?

Her attire in tatters, insidious assaults from her sons
she grips the frayed edges with her tempestuous smile
Blood oozing from her graying temples
as bigoted saws cleave her bosom into gushing rivulets.
“How do I stop those grabbing, lustful fingers?
I am her daughter but now pitted against my own brothers.”

She opens her peace-scented bowers to misguided souls
trying to soothe their hatred with forgiving tears
Ignoring her wounds, her love -drenched prayers,
They see only the gold glittering in her womb.
“Some brave sons she needs, a few virginal daughters too
I cannot light any more funeral pyres of her infants, all alone.”

A mother, our own, ravished shamefully by our gods
Her wise lap, a barren graveyard lashed by divisive tongues
Pull out poison -tipped arrows, tug at hateful weeds
Every iota and inch of her is almost a grisly battlefield.
Her bloody rivulets run down my bleeding fingers too
How do I feed babies with such sinfully soiled hands?

Lend me helping hands to sweep our colossal courtyard clean
to re-write our history on a dirt-repelling lotus leaf
of lives lost in vain, waiting for a Kalki to shoulder the blame.
-Reena Prasad

Waves


My thoughts
fluttering in the breeze
come to rest awhile
upon your lovely tree
Won’t peck your ripe fruits
nor drop any waste
Let them hang about
shoot not in haste
lest they lose their wings,
their little space …
Lest your tree become
their gallows
strangling their free waves.

©Reena Prasad Mar2012

Aurulent tones


Aurulent tones

Painting by Samik Bhattacharya

 

Composed notes
of rigorous skills
met the vibrant dholak beats
Night Ganga lushly flowed
amidst the exotic Oudh smoke
saturated with musk
dispersed with soft swishes of fanning silk.
Pausing, listening, flowing with benevolent grace,
Night turned into
a languid panicle of wine and song.

He sang on but silence reigned within
alone with his resplendent throes
A vagabond soul
drenched in an extravaganza of musical mayhem.
Moist eyes transmuted tears
into seven, divine string throbs
Dholak beats echoing the reverberant
overtones of an inner Sarod.
A vibrant Jugalbandi
of trembling tones
inside a resonant soul.
©Reena Prasad

This poem was written for an Ekphrastic poem competition based on the given painting .

Wake up


The bells toll
but these are of bicycles
Jostling and pushing each other
in their hurry to reach where ever.
Small tea-shops, odd assortment
of ties, lungi, vest and shoes
gossip centering around  the news.

Bread and cheese ones, in swanky mansions
– the television juggling their views.
Money controlling facial gestures
Get – a smile, take – a frown
Changing mental wallpapers
now simplified
The gory killing on the screen
neither shocks nor registers.
Indifference
and no after effects.

Murder
cold blooded murder
yet not of the person they think it was
Murder of faith as men turn into mercenaries
Misled by hunger- induced hallucinatory
images of being missionaries
Murder of the lone human race
Why  kill? Why want something
in exchange of a death?

Humble origins of homo sapiens
maybe we still carry
some  blue-green algae in our bloody veins
Our fishes ,our trees, our tribe
Now
My land, my state, my country
Mission forgotten
to carry evolution forward
To safely hand over earth
To the unborn warriors
untaught in the chakravyuh of politics.

Exaggerating trivial  issues
to the gory point
of a fellow being’s ultimate sacrifice
dividing  lives into countries, faiths
amidst noise and  hollow victories.

Hear pleas
crafted with the essence of loss
of crushed, sacrificed, innocent buds.
This was the promised land
They too wanted to throw stones
into the pond
to take a rain walk
to dream  in the moon shine
But they could not
For their life lines were cut with hateful blades
even though earth had enough
for all.

Generation of blood art
Let us wipe out this unholy graffiti
from human walls
It is not too late.
©Reena