I was a cat then
and now I am this
nine births removed —

beside me, the tree,
that is still a tree,
watches a fragrant
jasmine creeper
climb up its roots to
seduce the decrepit
moon. It knows —

a single bee
hangs in the
unmoving air
like an unpleasant
truth —

trying to be human
damages the soul so
it can no longer be
recycled, washing up
on a faraway shore,
killing the fish
that ignorantly
race to feed upon
its unbroken bits —

a single flower
falls on the earth
where we lie,
the cat and I
together, nine deaths
removed —

Water to Water – on Amazon




I sit with my finger
pressed into my wound –
there should be pain,
there should be shock,
there should be blood.
But all I feel is a
strange sense of comfort.

I learnt this from the
earth — the way she
rips open her seams
every now and then
just to reassure herself
there’s still a fire
burning in her belly.

Print/e-book on Amazon


From the rib

This too is a kind of eden.

There is bewilderment
and temptation,
sin and sine qua non,
there is exponential loss.

From the rib of the first eden,
countless edens were spawned,
deliberate, inadvertent,
the devil running crimson
through their veins.

I too had a god, before.
Before snakes.
Before fruit.
After light.
Until the emptiness
became imperfect.
Until the imperfection
turned into cause.
Until the cause
demanded a rib.
Until the rib
sacrificed a god.

This too is a kind of eden.
After snakes.
After fruit.
After dark.
Until a god
reclaims the emptiness.
Until the emptiness
becomes imperfect.

This too.

For the midweek prompt at Poets United: ‘Garden’


Water to Water, my first poetry collection, is now available on Amazon – US, UK and India


The Bridge

Everything is in free fall. There you are — standing on the bridge between life and death, between being something and becoming something else, between anticipation and foreboding, between then and thereafter, between what you were meant to be and what you will be when it is over.

And every word, every breath, every thought, leaves you to flutter downwards into the snaking continuum, not belonging to you before it was yours, not yours after it has belonged to you for that one moment — passing through your presence, changing you, changing itself, drifting rushing, reaching into the ever-moving. Still you wait with hopes and dreams in your sad eyes as if the tumult of the shuddering universe has taught you nothing.

sky or sea or wind –
who owns
this first monsoon cloud?



Water to Water, my first poetry collection, is now available on Amazon – US, UK and India


Another Season

They said today, the monsoon will arrive in the first week of
June. Like it always does. We outlast summer because we know

the wet will come. We survive the rains because we know that
by Diwali, the clouds will begin their retreat. We get through the

festive season because the cold numbs our fevered brow. In April,
the first mangoes will ripen in the sun. There is always another

season. There is always another reason. One more transformation. One
more repetition. Our mortality is never in question as long as the variables

are constant. It is the unchanging that we fear. A forever downpour.
An endless summer. A predictable love. A world refusing to fall apart.

As a star, As a god


You made up these rules. You set the bar for
longing too high. You wanted to be exalted
as a star, as a god. But I know love refused to
play your game. It fell into your arms and fit
its weight into the yearning in your heart. Didn’t
it teach you to fly with your feet on the ground?



Mohini on a swing: Raja Ravi Varma
Previous: Tao inspirations #7
Follow series on Instagram: @tp_poetry

The Lists


Count all the things that are eternal. Then
count all the things that are not. In which
list did you put the love you feel? The love
you received? In which list did you put
yourself? When creation made its lists,
which one do you think it placed you in?



Dreaming Shankuntala: Raja Ravi Varma
Previous: Tao inspirations #6