Volume 4 Issue 2, June 2020
Special Issue for Indian Poetry

Subhadeep Paul

Home-station Epiphanies

 

I’m not stationed on speeding wheels now

There’s no compulsion to visit astrologers

I’m learning to do without self-appointed gods

I do without a fancy haircut and resemble a pir baba

There’s no urgency to shun slang from my private thesaurus

There’s no rule to follow traffic-signals on the writing desk

There’s no pressure to become somebody

Death sips my coffee, all too leisurely

There’re no worries of a body-complex

The potbelly is an all-too familiar pal

I’ve started to understand better, the villain of my story

These days

I don’t prune love

Like hedges of public gardens.

 

 

My Executive Diary Turns Personal                                                       

 

Appointments like unfailing morning ablutions                                                                       

Calendar dates follow like monthly salaries                                                                       

Pre- and post-noon schedules                                                                       

Ensue like factory productions                                                                       

Speed and bulk on the wheels of hurry.                                                                      

 

Then comes a sudden slow down                                                                       

The planets had been spinning too fast                                                                       

We snored away the early mornings                                                                       

When Nature replenished herself                                                                       

In a million shapes and colours.                                                                      

 

I note the goldfish observe the world                                                                       

I study each hexagon honey comb                                                                       

With the unhurried pour of tomato juice                                                                       

From a Dei Fratelli bottle.                                                                      

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pandemic Panthers

 

I shut them out

Outside the door

Making them

Nothing

But

Their nails grow

Knife-sharp

And scratch on glass

So that

You

And

Time

Give them a proper hearing

A suitable audience.

 

 

Not All Vaccines Are Medical

 

I search for the Golden Oriole

In a mortar and steel universe

 

A child’s zig-zag crayon lines

Are fog-lights that guide me home

 

The aloe vera scent melts

All the literary devices

 

A new Mont Blanc nib

Sketches figures from the myth-kitty

 

Unrenewed marriage vows emerge

From neglected tooth-cavities

 

Unsolved maladies are discarded

Like the nubby green skin of custard apples 

 

Building love and bridges

On supplies of laws and logistics.

 

 

 

 

About the poet

Dr. Subhadeep Paul is currently Assistant Professor in The Department of English, School of Literature, Language and Cultural Studies, Bankura University, India. He has co-directed a Two-Year Major Research Project entitled “Discoursing the Homeless Elderly: Tropes, Desires, Containment” (2016-18), funded by the Indian Council of Social Science Research and in collaboration with The University of Swansea, UK. In this connection, he has conducted field-surveys and interviews of pavement dwellers, the homeless elderly, migrants, ashramites and BPL tribal converts of East and North-Eastern India. Finite Sketches, Infinite Reaches, published in 2009 from Writers’ Workshop, Kolkata, is his first book of poems. His poems, short stories and non-fictional writing have appeared in various forums such as Blue Minaret Literary Journal, Earthen Lamp Journal, The Four Quarters Magazine, Northeast Review, The Sunday Statesman, The Telegraph etc. His poem ‘Scotbuds’ was selected as the newest entry in Thali Katori: An Anthology of Scottish & South Asian Poetry (Edited by Bashabi Fraser and Alan Riach), published in 2017 by Luath Press, Edinburgh. Another poem ‘Beyond Iron Curtains’ was selected by Rochelle Potkar as the best poem in the Green Tara-Rhythm Divine Indo-Russian Poetry Contest held in 2018 at Gorky Sadan, Kolkata.

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Published by The Alternative.