Saturday, November 23, 2013

Immortality 3

...and someday I will 
become a forgotten 
memory, archived 
in tombstones with 
reluctant lilies squinting
in the murmur of the sun,
their desire to kiss
the wind, where ashes 
float from the last 
remembered hands.

When the pages of 
the calendar turn, the 
rain announces another
year of my return in the 
cracks of the old home
where the child in the 
picture refuses to grow. 

Another song will bid the 
year good bye to the 
dead, another repetition 
awaits the living.  

There is no memory in the wind

I taste the solitude. 
It's a house with 
many doors, none 
a paean of the
memory you so 
dutifully preserved. 
It's cold, the verses 
have gone silent; the
frost in the wind 
settles reluctantly
on tired lips. 
The air sweating 
time like mist on 
closed windows. How 
long will we brush 
the dust of silence
under the duvet? 
How long the dream 
be our sole memory? 
The smile I adorned 
was a stolen dream. The 
shoes have been discarded, 
the dust wiped out clean. 
The vagabonds of years 
past return home, the 
memory a deep 
longing;searching for 
places to hide.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

आवारा धुआं

सुबह- सुबह इन सड़कों पर ये कौन 
आवारा धुआं फ़ैल रहा है, एक संकरी 
लकीर बनाता हुआ, अपने धुन में मस्त 
किस राह चल दिया है 

रुक कर अपनी साँसों को कभी सहेजता 
पल भर के लिए थम जाता अधखुले जंगले 
पर और झाँक जाता घरों में बैठे खामोशी को 

अल सुबह यही खेल दोहराता फिर थक कर बैठ 
जाता छत पर लटके बांसी पपड़ियों पर 

इन्हीं पलों में स्मृति कि दीवार कुछ कमज़ोर 
हो झरने लगती, उसके टुकड़े बिखर जाते 
बंद रौशनदानो में, कपड़ों में एक अलसाई 
गंध सिमटने लगती और एक उबास सी 
भर जाती अलमारियों में 

नज़र बचा कर कोई एक नन्हा धूप 
का टुकड़ा डूबता रहता तुम्हारे काँधे 
कि अलगनी पर 

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Spaces we never see

I sit without a pen, 
drifting words like sand 
sit like granules in the 
hollows of my hand. Beyond
my window a memory has 
breathed its last echo. It 
must be morning somewhere.

I see the curves of your smile 
entering in the spaces between 
the nose and the lips, spreading 
on the chin, entering into the 
creases in your forehead;
teasing the melancholy of 
pain, the habit of its repetition, the 
hands of its memory, life 
of its drift.

The smile asks for lightness
from the drifting blue smoke 
and the wetness from the rain. It 
peeps from the crevices 
in the dangling plaster on 
the balcony across my 
view, speaks a reluctant 
word to the woman on the 
street and gathers a silence 
from her breath and rests like
droplets on rain on the 
window in a cold day.   

There are spaces we 
never see when we are 

Thursday, September 12, 2013

and write

There are silences we have failed, 
pieces torn from our own hands.
Let us not stitch memories to them, 
words cast out of history have no 
archive. Listen to the whimper of the
night (if you can) and write. A word
pauses in front of you, let it enter 
your diary, and write. Unravel this 
repetition; your life. Liberate the 
sand from the hour glass, and 

Monday, September 9, 2013

...and the blanks

..and you traveled wide along
the shy stream; memories 

...and they all had memories; 
the ones who never returned. 

...and the time; empty-
paper plates, a cup of 

...and the tired muse; a 
broken pen. 

The house of solitude. 

Monday, September 2, 2013

स्‍मृति समय को एडिट कर देती है

जिसे हम अपना आत्‍म कहते हैं
वह एक अव्‍यवस्थित सी शेल्‍फ है;
यह सपनों की छीलन को
झाड़ती रहती है व टूटे हुए ऐसे शब्‍दों व रंगों के लिए
एक कोना छोड़ देती है जो किसी उबाऊ व थकान भरी रात में खिल उठते हैं.
संगीत किसी जंग लगे दिन पर एक शोक-गीत की तरह लटका रहता है,
किसी कहानी की गर्द जूतों पर चमकती है
और आप किसी अजनबी की बाहों में ढह जाते हैं.
इस परदेसी मुल्‍क में
कला की बाढ़ नुमा एब्‍सर्ड काम जितना ही एलियन होता है
और आपको उस चेहरे व दिन की याद दिलाता रहता है
जब असफल शब्‍दों के सामने बैठे एक पैन ने लिखने से इंकार कर दिया था.
समृति समय को एडिट कर देती है


A translation of "Memory edits time" by Pramod

स्‍मृतियां संपादित करतीं समय को

स्‍व एक अव्‍यवस्थित शेल्‍फ 
सपनों की धूल से अंटा 
जिसके कोने में रखे टूटे शब्‍द और रंग 
चमकते हैं किसी थकी हुई रात में 
मरसिए की तरह टंगा है संगीत 
जंग खाए दिनों की अलगनी पर 
किसी कथा की धूल झाडो तो 
गिरती है जूतों पर और आप 
अपरिचित बांहों में 

अजनबी सा अतीत 
इस विदेश में 
असंगत कलाकृतियों की बाढ के बीच 
तुम्‍हारे चेहरे की याद दिलाता 
और उस दिन की 
जब आमने सामने बैठे हुए 
शब्‍दों ने कलम का साथ देने से 
इनकार कर दिया था 

स्‍मृतियां संपादित करतीं समय को 


Monday, July 29, 2013

memory edits time

Its an un-arranged shelf 
we call the self; it dusts 
the splinters of dreams, 
assigns a corner for 
broken words and colours 
which blossom through in 
a tired night. The music 
hangs like an elegy
to a rusted day, the 
dust of a story rubs over 
the shoes and you fall 
in the arms of a stranger. 
The past as alien as an 
absurd work of art floods 
through this foreign country 
reminding you of a face, 
and a day when collapsing
across failed words a pen 
refused to write. Memory 
edits time.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

A morning arrives

On the chiseled streets of morning
an infinite patience wraps its arms
in the flowing breeze, the morning workers
gather whispers for the night, sip their
coffee on tired lanes, the garbage trucks have
long arrived, the guzzling of machines, the dumping
of cans and the idle chatter of the machine men
all merge in the endless suffering of the morning.

Only the sparrow reminds of the lost fantasy of the
night, and the splitting hair, the known nightmare of the
day. The rush of the morning smells from broken houses;
aroma of kneaded bread burning on the ovens, the smell
Of onion, slowly tasting the lost charms of garlic and
a chili descending in the chaos in the kadhai.   

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Unfinished conversations

She wants to hold on to me like unfinished conversations, he thought. But those conversations are lost when the threads which bind them have been forgotten, new meanings creep in the midst as past slowly gathers itself in the present.Slowly you repeat the beginnings in your mind, day after day, hour after hour, as if in a mere repetition the conversation will come to life, you slowly gather her shadow and put it in the back of the pocket or an unread book, the book when it is opened, it is not the same page and the shadow slowly eases past the last remembered light...all the practiced phrases become a futile attempt to capture the moment and you slowly lose the company of long was he thinking like this? the cigarette he held in his hand was long burnt and he was lucky this time that it dint burn his fingers as he often used to do, the ashes had drifted on the open book sensing a wind behind which flapped its dog eared pages...the glass on the table had begun to form rings around its base and at the rim where his lips touched the wine of the last night, the sediments settling down as the left over wine had evaporated in the burning heat of the was unusual for this time of the year to have so much sun, yet the clouds alternated everyday as if keeping their promise with a tired sleepy narrow alley where he used to live...the plate on the table reminded him of the food he had cooked the day before, pieces of the yolk of the egg still sticking to it and the salt strewn around the blue plate as mocking stars on a moonless night.....

Saturday, April 27, 2013


You wait at the screen for words
to tumble, for faces to appear out
of a mask, for an emotion to
wrap its emptiness, for the
tragedy of a death in a
land unknown, for news
trickling down like brewed

You wait at the screen, the
life passing by in small trifles
you never promised to do, in
small silences you never
bothered to hear, in pages
you forgot to read, in faces you
will never see.

Time empties itself in memory
as it eases past your sight.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013


मैं कोई एक पल तो नहीं
जिसे तुम उकेर सको अपनी
डायरी के पन्नों में, मैं क्षितिज
पर अस्त होता हुआ सूर्य भी नहीं
जो हर रोज़ अस्त हो कर अपनी
समानता में भी भिन्न है जिसे
रोज़ तस्वीर में कैद कर कैनवास
पर उतारा जा सके

मैं तो हर एकांत में एक शब्द
का नकार हूँ, अगर सुन सको
तुम उसे तो ये अपने खालीपन
का आवरण उतार देना। तुम्हे
पूर्ण करना न मेरी नियति है
न कोशिश, जो पूर्ण है वह तो
कब का बिछड़ गया है और
जिसे तुम अपूर्ण जान चुकी
हो वह केवल सडकों पर
भटकता समय है।

इन सबमे कहाँ पा सकोगी
तुम मुझे, इनमे मैं कहाँ देख
पाऊंगा तुम्हे, रात
के ढेर को बांटती तुम्हारी
आखों मे एक स्पर्श
सा है ये जीवन, चलो इसे
विसर्जित कर दें इस पल
उस बहाव की फांकों में
जो निरंतर तुमको
छू  कर मुझसे दूर
कहीं बिखर जाती है

Sunday, March 31, 2013


when your existence becomes heavy on the skin
of others, what do you do? Do you slowly wrap the
skin around with a warm blanket of your words
or tear open the scar the rusted kitchen knife gave
you? perhaps, you do nothing, take a word, tease its
meaning out and leave it hanging like wet clothes like
a flag post of all your failures, there it flaps its wings
in half mast itching your memories in their shadow.
perhaps you just wrap it around like a torn shirt
in your old rusted iron trunk and forget it for
a mourned winter when you will again hibernate
from love. Perhaps you do nothing at all, just wait,
a patience wrapping it arms like a shroud on your
dreams, the skin peels off in slivers like droplets from
leaves, the leave left thirsty for rain and you for love….
slowly you begin to forget her, and she you
your words which provided a cushion in
tired nights mean nothing at all, the mere sign
of your being, a tired memory of a lost battle
with happiness ..and you drool over
the taste of wine and the lost aroma of coffee.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Waking up

what do you do when you are surrounded by piles of sameness, with nothing left to choose between one moment of another; a moment repeats itself endlessly like a mechanical clock quizzically trying to judge you yet locked in its own inscribe meaning into one moment and it spills out of the other; a moment which you dint know but which existed nonetheless inside you, around you even when words were failing to surprise you for the umpteenth moment when you wanted them to come to your rescue...every new word a tired memory of shed clothes which leave a shine on you only the first time when you wore can just sit and discern the differences in the sound across the window, the chirping of the birds and the endless passing of people in cars and buses...beyond a point you fail to register for somewhere you see to have rhythm with them...the breath a tune of their fragrance, the time flowing in your nerves a faint remembrance of the silent shake in the building when a bus crosses through, or the movement in the eyelids just a passing everyday glance of the sea gull perched on a TV antenna...even the everydayness does not seem to surprise you when you wear it and discard it in the nights of the evening where a tired day sleeps like a child in a cocoon, protected from its own face and their own mischievous doings......

perhaps you wake up in the morning with a shadow of the dream still lingering behind the eyelids, slowly slipping down as the aroma of the coffee steals itself into the slippages of the dream, some splashed in the water as it rests still on the eyes, some clinging to the eyebrows, and some waiting to evaporate to reveal a radiant face of the morning. You wake up to a new day away from the dreariness of memories of old, as if you were a different person who was living in the remembrance of a memory, who was struggling the night before to un cling all, yet slowly when the rituals of the waking, of lying in the bed with a tiny wink of sleep hiding somewhere, calling you in the arms, the pillow crooning over your face, the blanket reveals a warmth lost to the night, the bed promises a new dream and the table lamp seems to be sleeping for ages, the alarm clock has long been tired waiting for you to be awake, it goes in its own slumbers, the night air is still fresh in the home, the shutters have not yet revealed the light of the day, the morning air blows outside the shutters waiting to carve in, waiting for the windows to welcome it...its an eternal play with its patience, as the sleep is the play with the patience of the morning to engulf it in your arms, but you have already forgotten the dreariness of the night...till it comes back when words start filling the gaps of the dream or a nightmare of the sleep, the words slowly move in to take their place where there were just images fleeting past as if on a TV screen, you could see the characters, perhaps you were one of them, playing a part which will never be replicated in real life as if fulfilling a fantasy.....yet the day promises a new beginning, but the old slowly becomes familiar as the smell of your own body, the bed, the blankets, the pillows all start to look familiar, the feel of the room suddenly dawns you back, stitches the slippages in time and fixes it in memory to bring all of it back to you...and suddenly what was a slow waking up comes like a deluge, the walls look the same, the fractures in the plasters reveals the same face, the moistness in the hands the same air, the mirror still shying away from its own face, the table lamp in the same position where you left it last night, the book still open with a character quizzically staring at you because you could not complete their story, they are waiting like us all to tell their story and it is like meeting a stranger on the train, before their story is finished you know the station has arrived and you have to get down, for that one moment you do not mind the train being late, you pray being lost in the story for the slowness of time, for the story encapsulates you and yet the train arrives on time and with a heavy heart you make the decision to get down, away from the story, somewhere with a promise to bump in to the stranger again...yet you know it will not happen, but you do not leave it start the story where it was left, but now it is through another story, of another stranger, on another train , in another journey, the sojourn changes but the story know the story is not the same, yet you start from where you left the last time, because somewhere you want to complete that story, because somewhere you know that most stories have some similarity and you yearn for the familiar even when you begin the new, just because removing the old cloak is all so different and all so difficult .....

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

कुछ पल

कुछ पल अभी और
ठहरो, पिछली भूली
खामोशियों को अपने
इर्द-गिर्द शब्द बटोरने
दो, नए शब्द मत गढ़ो
अभी; बिखर जायेंगे,
बस इस खामोशी को
अपने आस- पास दायरा
बनाते देखो, पिछले कितने
शब्दों की रातें अभी उधार
है तुम पर 
उन्हें एक- एक कर
बस पिघलने दो,
उतरने दो इस रात में
अभी बस कुछ पल
खामोश रहो

Saturday, January 26, 2013

मेरी कविता

मेरी कविता एक निराशा है 
उन शब्दों की जो कभी जी नहीं 
पाए, रोज़ एक असफल कलाकार 
की नाईं मैं बैठ जाता कुछ हर्फों 
का  पोषण लिए और लिपता जाता 
जैसे मरहम पट्टी करता हो वो 
डॉक्टर, फिर रोज़ उस नासूर को 
बढ़ता पा छोड़ देता उसे अपनी 
मौत के लिए। 

कविता एक निराशा 
है कवि के लिए, वह जीवन जो 
वो कभी जी नहीं पाया; ढूँढा 
था  जिसे कभी शब्दों मे मगर कभी  
उभार नहीं पाया। 

असंख्य शब्दों 
की मृत्यु का शोक है एक कविता ;शब्द 
जिसे वह पोषित न कर सका, शब्द जो 
उसका साथ छोड़ गए, जो बच गए 
कोरे कागज़ पर वह उसके सुने जीवन 
के प्रतीक थे; जिनमे उन शब्दों की नाईं 
कितनी बार मरा था वह, की एक कविता जी सके।

Friday, January 18, 2013

अधूरी कविता 2

सारी रात तुम्हे अपनी कविताओं 
में ढूढता रहा, पाई आधी कहानियां 
तुम्हारे बिखेरे हुए आधे रंग, और 
कितने चेहरों में छिपा एक धूमिल 
होता एक चेहरा, सभी टुकड़ों को 
सहेजा मैंने पर कहीं बन न पाई 
तुम्हारी आकृति।
 इस कृति में, इस समय में शायद कभी 
पा न सकूँ तुम्हेजितना भी पाया 
 खुद को तुम्हारे समीप उतनी ही दूर हो
 जाती तुम्हारी आकृति। 
अब इस कृति से दूर, तुमसे दूर 
मैं ले जाना चाहता हूँ खुद को 
शायद इसी में मिल जाए तुम्हारी 
आकृति और कर दूँ इसे अंत; 
ये सूना अधूरा जीवन। 

अधूरी कविता

जीवन में ऐसा अलगाव नहीं 
की दूर हो जाऊं तुमसे,  
पर अब लगता है दूर हो कर 
ही बना पाऊंगा मैं घर अपने 
और तुम्हारे न होने के।  

अच्छा होता ये अलगाव के 
घर, ये पास रह कर भी दूर 
होने के आभास भी हम साथ 
ही बनाते, शायद ऐसा कुछ होता 
जिसे यादों में रख कर कहते की 
कुछ तो साझा किया  और बनाया 
हमने: ये साथ न सही, महसूस होता 
यह एकाकीपन तो हमने साथ जिया। 

शायद इसी शून्य में हमारे लौटने 
का रास्ता निकल आये?