The Men Behind Monuments

Image by Jiyad Nassar @unsplash


In this sudden stillness
A final silence grows
From beneath the dead branches
Enveloping ants and Angels alike

The dry mist of purpose
That once haunted men
Now haunts their monuments
The mindless mortar
Made and remade
For each thought
And every contour
Which seeks in itself
The forever form
That everlasting aspiration
Of becoming a being

But the Promethean promises
Are but promises
Just as the silhouette stems from the shape
So does the shape is rooted in the silhouette
Like a circle trapped
Within its own circumference
Sans a seen beginning
Sans any unseen end

There is a witness
For every arrival
Till no one arrives anymore
And then the fishes are left alone in the desert
To drown in the mirage of memories
The breathing carcass
Reminiscent of living
In an abandoned womb
Never to awake
Never to walk
Like ages unspent
Upon the faces of the rock

In the Light of the Darkness

I believe the night to be beautiful
And polite in its quiet understanding
Of letting people be
Alone with their monsters
That others would never see
For the dark cannot differ
Between the shape and its shadow
Nor cast colours by their causes
Or ask more of friend and less of foe
To night all belong
Both the dreamer and its dreams
The silence of frozen lakes
And the songs of eternal streams
But here in the deep
Within the halls of man’s own mind
The dark reigns ever awake
In hope to one day find
The answer all eyes seek
Yet doubt to ever know;
If the soul is but a seed
That once then shall never grow…

Remains of the Rain

Image by Mehrsad Rajabi@unsplash


I saw my children standing in the rain
Their faces lined with age and late reason
Watched the abandoned bicycles
And broken seesaws
Being pulled down by the weight of raindrops
Their hands, long and thin, like dead seaweed in the summer wind
Their legs green and gold, like new leaves suddenly old
Seemed painted
In the moist color of quiet
The abandoned delight
Having dissolved
In the lament of the rain
They turn; the motion a sad song
An unfinished lullaby
To look at me with eyes
Half awake but never asleep
As if I with my window earned wisdom
Would know
Why all things grow
Only to die
If life in the very virtue of living
Is a lie
But they know the answer
As well as me
It is better to forget than to believe what we see
In the everyday aftermath
Of the daily demise
Of choices left to chances
And promises made before goodbyes
For in the end all paths
Shall return where they began
Even the oceans with all their eternity
Are but remains of the rain…

The Ash Blanket

Last night
In dim light
Of half closed fridge
My pale skin
Shone
Like snow on fire
And the blunt desire
To bruise
And break
These filial bonds
Of flesh and bones
Rose, untainted
Like waves on sea
Like a dream disguised as a memory

I was sleeping
Under the cold warmth
Of the ash blanket
Till people appeared
By my bedside
Beings sulphurous
Silhouettes of silver smoke
Which spoke:
‘Come to us
You child of gravity
There is a world beyond the world
Shaped by chaos and clarity
A latticework of lyrics
A synagogue sans any saint
A cosmos acclaimed by cynics
A painting without the paint’
And I alive in tenuous thoughts
Of nevermore and forever
Could only see and be
A shadow of a reflection
Unborn thus free
And so those excelsior people
With ghost hands bore me away
Astride the light they had saved
Back from their leftover days

What I saw thence I cannot say
There is nothing to remember
Between the first dawn of January
And the last night of December
But there are those half dreamt moments
When I seem to know
The truth breathed upon me:
That Soul is what the light don’t show

But last night
In dim light
Of half closed fridge
My pale skin
Shone
Like snow on fire…

Daydreams Of a Day

I wore a blanket for a cape
For only in dreams I can escape
The mortal wounds
So lovingly applied
As an afterthought of ache

Oft nights when the world
Is turning inside out
Being snowflake proud of rainbow vomit and papier-mâché pyramids
Growing in a mindless ocean of silver sweat
I sit as stillness amidst the walls
Like a spineless spider flat and small
Aping what I think
Is the rhythm I cannot find
Do I mind? Do I mind?
Stars falling like dandruff on blank shoulder of the night
Do I mind? Do I mind?
Knowing my common mind preaches that I am one of a kind

The cactus upon the windowsil
Looks down on the street and see
Other trees meditating
Like monks on a subway free
Half dead and half high
Having two views of one life
An ever burning driftwood
Entombed in blue ice
I am that monk
That beggar with bright face
Having known no sunshine, I shine
Having known no misery, I make mine
From the refrigerated leftover of a burnt down town
Crying over T-shirts and Blazers, Tank tops and gown

The world with its thorned tendrils and tremors of love
The world with its crow’s claws and feathers of a dove
Knows the weight and cost of a coin unspent
For this life; a tragedy, for this life; a parody
Is best lived,unmeasured and as if each day is on rent

I have seen geisha queens
Dance on aspen nights
Play with children made of fire
And love men afraid of light
I have known threadbare hearts
Bare it all upon the floor
And yet be trodden upon
Like a foot mat at the door
And so much more, so much more
I have seen and chosen to ignore
The what if and why not
The why now and not before
So much more, so much more, now no more anymore

Nescience

I wait at the newspaper stand
Reading, the morning is grey
Ash tinted
Like an old man’s asthma

Buds of people are sprouting
From windows and eggshell alleyways
Dressed in yesterday’s dreams
And tommorow’s promises
Faces creased, bespectacled
With white hairs a halo
From the century long sunlight
Age ever ached to swallow

A ballad pours from the the barbershop
The old stereo is crooning about
Footsteps falling on azure fields
And carts on country roads
I can smell the aftershave
At once bitter and sweet
The razor once again vacant
Without the borrowed heartbeat

There is a fallacy here
Between the words and vision
I read and see
The stories seem vibrant but life colour-free
Perhaps it is the weight of being
That makes it so
For all of us do wither
But only some of us grow

The children have gathered on the footpath
A bell in some temple tolls
The priests are praying for bliss
And in laughter a football rolls
I watch, I watch
The world divided in unison
Each hour be day or night
Being a part of every season

So I pay my fair share
It’s time for me to leave
And be one amongst the masses
Who in eternity believe
Of everyday man and their everyday deeds
In the cycle of fruit from the flower and flower from the seeds
If only one would question; Does the roots if ever know?
Of the world that blooms outside from their breaths buried below

Marmalade

Pieces of sunlight on my shirt
Golden flakes caught unawares in snow
I wear the world
As a witness upon my eyebrow

Pendulum thoughts, mine,
Rising to always fall, falling to ever rise
A deaf dance; this one legged tango
Should I mourn
The forgotten remembrance
Of irony bound in common things
Like water buried in a coconut or born in one who knows what it means to be a child
Without being none
I, myself, was born skinless
In a seed of wild fern
Wordless they named me; those voices in my head,
Till I spoke and my friends began to fade
One after another
Like orange in marmalade

The wind upon the canvas do not dry the paint
Nor a fire miles away
Help me find my feet
Of all the pain in the world; it’s the loss that alone tastes sweet
With syrup on my bruise
And sugar on my wound
I limp away
From weeping windows and waking walls
For I heard my cupboard say the other day
Wear less and be more
Was that a dream, a dream
Like Dali high on sour cream?
I wish only to know
Can my hand reach out to my heart and squeeze
The last drops of Carpe Diem to please
My soul; that cotton candy wrapped in light and luck
Made In Bed after a night of soft….

Dear Diary
I am exhausted
Ginsberg and Sexton, Whitman and Poe
Conrad, Tolstoy, Orwell and Thoreau
I read about them all
Copperfield and Twist
And Einstein’s Relativity and Marie Antoinette’s false feast
Should I sleep now
Will the night ask me no more
Questions and answers
Legends and lores

There is a spider on the bed
(Yes, it’s a thought in my head)
Should I scream or be quiet
(There is nothing to be said)
So twinkle twinkle little star
There are bottles in the hotel bar
And many miles to drink before I sleep
Till the laughter stops and it soothes to weep…

Raiment

Image by Francesca Zama @unsplash

Naked pictures painted on the world map, a global ache this systematic subjugation, arraigned with signatures and rubber stamps and blue and black ink with red smeared hands from…

Ants committing suicide for sugar cubes, mountains sundered for a grain of sand, weighing a ton by common belief of a wishful world running in a race without an end around a toilet flush
I hear music in the smoking firmament, the guttural snort and fart of the engine like Mozart’s Requiem for Modern Times; graveyards filled with scraps, dusty medals pinned upon pigeon chests, chest with springs and cogs inside, all mechanisms of a meager mind,

Breathed upon by gunpowder gods never crucified, but kept alive, unchained unlike Prometheus or castrated unlike Cronus, with 9mm eyes watching over the supposed universe,
Lives televised, a miniscule mime renting life per hour, human carcass threaded, talking puppets mimicking everyday shambles with double exclamation and undying opinions; graffiti upon bathroom walls, the enlightenment of our age; our Bible, our Koran, our Commandments, our Veda,

An ocean of umbilical madness, Medusas of mind, writhing in the depths of drowned time, left helpless at the bottom, garbage cans, lobster traps, Ahab’s ambition, little mermaid’s fin, all part of the abyss, woven tales of Atlantis

Beggars upon sidewalk, watching the neon lights blink at the mannequins dressed and fed better than them, breathing in glass case while the Caesar supine on steps as flat piece of bread looks on: Et tu, Et tu, until a coin clatters in the bowl and Rome falls, democracy dissolved under the acid rain of paint thinner,

Red sky running, blind horse racing against the rider till the tollbooth where hands on hips the old man walks the zebra crossing, unmindful of the airplanes lined at the red light, waiting one and all to fly away, without passengers or Blackbox, to a land where runways end

Phantoms fasting upon a fingernail, the sound of anarchy, electric guitar with strings of lightning, rainbow flooding the floor, and the people waving, a mingled marsh undecipherable, a canvas coated with paint, avant-garde asylum overflowing with stone heads

Rows of velvet cushion upon glass, red carpet laid upon mud, hyenas laughing in the hallway in high heels and mothball tuxedos from pawn shop, faceless fornication behind the screen, lips locked together in war, breathes dying with alcohol,

And outside the Ghost of Christmas Past selling mint in the rain, poets pass him and politicians, all made of papers full of question marks and Venn diagram that depicts everything said and done, the saying it has the bigger circle and the deeds it had none,

The Van Gogh World waking, rivers of gas flowing under matchstick houses waiting for madmen, toothpick buildings dancing for children playing whack-a-mole, Las Vegas without lights like teeth of a key; all cards of the fleeting reality playing pinochle with constant uncertainty,

Dismal days these, age of enlightenment, recoilless Renaissance, people paying people to understand people paying people, round around the circumference of Drachma with Copernicus we fly, we fly, taking one day kryptonian crash course, and pretend to die with cries towards the sky; O father thou art in heaven, look down now and weep, for seven days you worked, and on the eighth it all went to dust, you knew it and yet you left it so, now weeds gather in your garden, and even Lucifer stays away and pray free from this drama; Hare Rama, Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Hare Rama

The Man Asleep


Life, look out
This man asleep
Is walking a dream
His pulse, afraid of inimical things, dance
At the incoherent din of the cattle bell,
For he knows only the time of tommorow
Prophesied by blind sages
Sages left by the world to marinate in old age
And he carries it; the cattle bell, it’s dead weight, it’s rue weight, like a talisman
Through the thick fog of promises
To the other side, where the light, yet unseen, seems to shine differently
For the sages who have looked on the winter
From far, would know something of the snow
Or so he hoped, with his face coddled within the blinkers
And crowned with a horseshoe

Life, look out
The man asleep
Knows not that he is sleeping
And so as waves he worship the shore
Unaware that he stands with men
Too afraid to blink at the sea
And soon he too would be watching the waters
Shiver with each breath of the seagull
Till his own wings wither and rot away
Leaving him; this epileptic Icarus
A common man among the common men
Left to watch each sunrise
And every sunset
From the shade of a dry sacamore
The hinterland of heart
That burned in winter
Knows both fire and ice is the same;
Perhaps, in the slow dance of the dying fire
He seeks the heat some more
Perhaps, his dreams are dreams of a dream
He dreamt he has dreamt before…

Pillars


I have seen Heroes
Shinning alone on the battlefield
Sword bare in bloodied hands
Hiding tears behind their shield
And the poets who wrote of courage
Knew not from those sunlit tower
That all wars are fought by them
Who has no ounce of power

I have seen Teachers
Cradling books in their velvet hand
Certain of the wisdom beneath the words
That the world fails to withstand
And the pupils who stay blind
And believe in it all
Are kept to learn the truth
Nailed as paintings upon the wall

I have seen Kings
Holding heaven in their earthly palms
Dive deep in the selfish seas
And make fist while breathing alms
And the people who praise the lord
For the health of the dear monarch
Knows not that the hand which feeds
Is the one that lays the nark

I have seen Saints
Swimming in the grey, tepid pool alone
And where hundreds had fallen
The saints could never drown
A miracle that belonged to them
Not by the blessings of the Throne
But because of the fact that the misery
Was not of their own