Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Birth of a poem

This was written in '97. I was doing a creative writing course (postal) from UK and they used to send a monthly newsletter about opening for freelance contributors in magazines and journals in the UK. In one issue I found a small column about a poetry competition with the title 'LOST' to be judged by an eminent poet (I don't remember who). This info was lingering in my head but I wasn't expecting anything to come out of it. Then bingo! I was going through the India Today in candlelight (those were the days of 30 mins load shedding & funnily those 30 mins turned out to be the most intense or focused in a 24 hrs day). There was a write-up about Soumitra Chatterjee, I don't remember the headline but the introduction had something like “he may have retired but his popularity refuses to go into oblivion”. The last word somehow rang a bell in my head and the last line was formed and very soon the whole poem was ready. So, I pulled a writing pad closer and jotted it down (yes! I used to write everything on paper with a pen in those days). Next day, I requested Dad to get it typed in his office PC and bring a couple of prints in the format specified in the newsletter. I did get the print out and a floppy disk in the evening with the comment "the lady who typed this told that you had spelt ‘existence’ wrongly and she has corrected it." No idea if he had read the whole thing. But, he did get me the Demand Draft for the submission and then I typed the covering letter attaching the poem and the DD with an unstamped self-addressed envelope requesting them that I’d like to have the opinion of the judge about my poem. I’d get it after a month or so on a piece of paper not bigger than a visiting card “We did not mean to use the title to be used in that context. And, only a person with severe physical disability can come up with the last line."

For me writing this at that time was an experiment with words rather than an emotional outpouring. But, I feel today it somehow resonates my mental state and I doubt that my mind will conjure up such a thing no matter however hard I try.


Dreams are lost with the sweet slumber.

Wishes are buried deep inside the heart.

The vulnerability to love,

The courage to hate,

Is lost.

Hopes for the future,

Memories of the past,

Are lost as I pass through the present.

Futility of existence pierces the soul.

Now I wish my life to be lost in the oblivion of eternity.

Saturday, January 05, 2019

An Urgent Shot of Insulin

I lay by the wayside in a drunken stupor

I can feel people passing by

As if oblivious of my existence

Or scrubbing their noses in disgust

Wish a stray dog just sniffs me

And lets the world know

That I’m not actually drunk

But in need of an urgent shot of insulin