Fiery ablutions for a new genesis

kissing the
stupefied buildings,
raging, ravaging,
it plays games
with a contempt

a catharsis
wrapped in every lick,
a thousand suns
in its erratic leap,
it swallows every excess
on this foraging trip.

but that which
razed you to the ground
was a cold heart,
not the burning desires.
excruciating heat
from the frigid touches
desiccated the remains of love,
in the air you breathe.

the city ablaze
reflected in the eyes
feels distant,
yet somehow your own,
as if you have exhaled
some flames of the fire
that consumes you within.

clouds of decadence
rise beyond the skies,
from the fiery ablution
that purges the people
and their city
ignoring the pleas
as civilization cries.

the clouds then melt
in a revelation,
wet ash now bears
the primordial seed.
beyond their losses,
and their lies,
grieving people witness
the sapling grow
feeding the city
with a conscience,
the buildings and
its stories again rise.

why then do you
wallow in your fire,
not letting it die
as your city did.
revenge of the wronged,
inescapable fate, destiny,
or one of your own making,
you let it cleanse
your nascent emotions
feeling a biting singe,
your established beliefs
perished to dust
in its chastising wake.

not the others but you
have been your own nemesis,
flanked by beginnings
in its transience
don’t you see the end
is but a divine providence.
go find the seed
within your soul,
rise again and
write your own genesis.


The living ghosts

Sometimes when I wake up
in the dark of the night,
not sure if I myself want to believe,
I wish I could tell you what I see,
sights that transcend logic and fantasy.

The phantom of sequestered fears
in a shade of gray,
stirs unsure of the smile
lurking at the corners
of its smoke-stained lips,
jeering it seems as it lisps.

The spirit made of jelly,
scorning ethics with a cultivated folly,
fidgets with subtle shifts
in its numb fingertips
beckoning me to join on its
flexibly venal fickle trips.

Then there’s this specter made of
a forgotten shame that rustles
on the rusty remnants
of a conscience, of regrets,
scouring the tarnished memories
exposing guile and my polished lies.

They appear shocked for a moment
when they find me staring,
making me wonder if it’s me
or are they the ones having the visions,
is this all playing in my head, they ask
for who is living and who is truly dead,
who is sleeping and who out of the bed.

When I go about acting as the world expects of me,
mornings when I feel it’s going to be a lovely day.
The phantoms and the specters of night
exist in my mind, I say.
Figments borne out of the insane
starry dreams and moonlight beams.

Then comes another night waking the rebel,
when they come without fanfare, with no care,
stark contrast with the people I met that day,
people who have stopped feeling when they are touched,
without expectations they help but can no more empathize,
they acquiesce without shedding the pretense of being wise.

These ghosts of the night however are naked as truth,
detached, they act like what they appear to be.
Tranquil and wavering only in the visual form,
they suggest maybe when I will take off the mask,
this body, the face and knowledge in which I bask,
I will join them and be what I was meant to be.

Resisting temptation I wake up to yet another day,
working and mingling with my comrades of daylight
as they move, lost, feeding on each others pity
striving to acquire possessions and fame for immortality.
I see in them the reflection of what I have become,
or are they pretending, and will be human when I am gone.
I wonder if along with them I am living my life,
or the lives living us, without us realizing our strife.

Do we write our stories,
or do the stories choose us.
If these ideas have always been around
before they find a prey and strike us.
No wonder even love just happens,
it’s not two people at random that fall,
love chooses us in no way different
than how this weird world with its people did.

Feeling helpless I go off to sleep much late at night,
wishing for the morning sun to come soon,
before I wake up for them to be gone to the moon.
My friends of the night faithfully visit, but with concern,
they make me calm and soothe me to sleep feeling at home.
Among my trusted, loving and the living dead,
I hope that the night never ends as I realize
how its the living ghosts of the day that I truly dread.


The fable dies of dystopia

nursing the wounds

in a great affliction

the amorphous affairs

gone treacherous

snakes slither out

of mouths opened in a kiss

defanged and deranged

they still mock

contempt echoed in

each other’s derisive hiss

the stories that didn’t hatch

hang on to the shell

dreading the unlikely endings

of this sordid affair

the writers might as well

transpose the adjectives

but they won’t lose the plot

or their sinister motives

birds of prey losing vision

shed their talons, now scavenge

and the tigress that once prowled

eating rats lost the regal respect

history will gladly tick off

the scene of perdition

when the hooded judges orgied

with trucks singing out of tune

a song that shuddered the jungle

with the gory rendition

dying trees have started feeding

on shredded and recycled dreams

the promised land is now parched

by plastic lies and deceit

ambrosial offerings stink

as they are nothing but offals

for the once verdant jungle

is now ruled by the society

of laughing hyenas, raging wolves

and the ever scheming jackals.


The cricket score

he gazes
at the blank page,
as if trying to remember
a photograph, a face.
an inspiration that died
on a creaking bed, when he had
as much interest in romance
as his age would allow
and his mind could swallow.

he looks away
from blankness, at the floor,
speckled it is with
half-twisted butts
of past cigarettes
and convoluted words
binned with no regrets.
a half empty soul
resonates with
a half empty bottle,
a half-hearted debate
with oblivion,
over arrogance and mettle.
there’s no winner, except
the metaphors lose
to cricket scores.
getting inspired now a rut
and the stories he spins
feel no different from his life
and its daily chores.

but one can only do so much,
they had sympathized.
if one doesn’t stop
one’s bound to get lost,
they had prophesied.
to prove them wrong
and to himself, he had toiled.
when he transcended boundaries
they tired of his rambles,
when he went beyond their horizon
they branded him insane,
but when he had given up
they didn’t, prodded him
to come up with his best.

so he did,
baring everything
to the last drop of his soul.
driven by something innate,
that sounded like a divine narrative.
without a break he had marched
towards the illusive superlative.
it drained him, it consumed him,
years passed between the blinks
as he poured everything out
not just the drinks,
producing his opus
so magnum it won him over,
and also fans, following,
culminating in a magazine cover.

with all the smoke now,
his imagination still doesn’t take flight.
with half the poison gone,
the bottle looks used, just as he might.
with the story out of his heart,
instead of being light,
feels heavy, feels contrite.
was it the best, he wonders
over many a sleepless nights,
for as soon as the best is expressed
it fizzles out and ceases to be.
they too felt the same
and after appreciating
moved from his best,
to something and someone’s better.

he stares at the blank page,
and a new bottle, a new match.
time doesn’t fly as they claim,
only the newborn cigarette butts
and those half-cooked words
make new designs on the floor,
when imitating them
he tries to watch the cricket score.


The hopeful cynics

buried and forgotten
of mists rising in obscure graveyards
search liberation from afterthoughts
as searing dilemmas in perception of horizons
create smokescreens confounding
the conscience that incited
optimism and love in

in love and optimism
incited that conscience
the confounding smokescreens
create horizons of perception in dilemmas
searing as afterthoughts from liberation
search graveyards obscure in rising mists of
forgotten and buried

Palindrome poems can be read both forwards and backwards. –Selenophile97


An ode to philosophy

read the poets
bards and philosophers
rationalizing me and my actions
but failing to define feelings and emotions.

Think so
on and so forth, they said
go find the truth hidden
between the lines
beyond the circuitous words
but laughed when I did so
dropping my existential guards.

Therefore unlike you
and your books
your wisdom laced with
vanity and jaded looks,
I must struggle to find
peace and probably bliss
delving within to solve
the puzzle with pieces amiss.

I must think to
conquer this mortal bane
because gods that created this life
and the wise who explained it
always seem sparingly sane.
Is there a meaning to every figment
a reason for every lie
or the wise and gods colluded so we are
miserable till we die.

Exist in my own thinking
though all of you do
I may condone the transgression
or give in to similar arrogance
and join the confounding mission.
I may choose instead to ignore
your edifying trophies
or fight and outlive
these esoteric philosophies.


Spoils of grief

Morning shines off the bard with hair still gray

a lilting voice that quivers from tales of far away

people gather and listen with awe

he too sees the lips move but listens to the silence,

deafened by the incessant whispers of his grief.


Day breaks in without notice

men trapped in their lives and with much malice

they move with purpose matching the determined sun in its ascent

unmoved though he wonders, of life, universe and everything deep,

wasted, he lies tired with the gentle toils of his grief.


Earthy fumes from raindrops falling on

the dusky fields from ages dried

as they rise to compete with smoky pots

those evening cauldrons of the veiled brides

reminiscing on the memories of a love so brief

he suffocates with the nauseating whiffs of his grief.


Moonlit nights of countless bliss

cloud the eyes with a not so unknown mist

and the dreams blossom in the gentle breeze

but in the midst of fighting the demons and reaching the heavens

he wakes up to face the staring eyes of phantoms of his grief.