From different journeys

I travel backwards even as the rest of the train flees
in the opposite direction. The man in the opposite

seat lets a newspaper fall. We pick it up from
different journeys, fingers briefly touching. I tell

myself the earth is a sphere, the horizon is my orbit.
I will arrive where he arrives, sooner or later. Some

people traverse yesterdays better than they ford
tomorrows. The train lingers at stations. The sepia

dust dances in a light beam of failure. Mirrors still
reflect the pink regret of long ago. What if creation

had made us before it made time? What would love be
then – at this station that is both the next one and the

previous, in this moment that has passed and is still
occurring, in this vector along which I have moved and

am still waiting? I watch the man leave, the paper
under his arm, understanding and still not knowing.

Print/e-book on Amazon

Micropoetry Month: Nov 2017: #21

Micropoetry MonthThey say poets shouldn’t write poems about poetry… but then, who else will!

What about poetry though? Bring your thoughts on poetry- how far does it reach, can it make a difference, are people who aren’t writing poetry, reading poetry? Or do you write for yourself, because you can, because you have to and it doesn’t matter if anyone else reads it or not. How do you engage readers, be effective, cause change, does that even matter? Be a poet, writing about poetry, for today!!

Share your micropoem through comments or using Mister Linky. Hope you also stop by to read the lovely poems shared by fellow bloggers.

Upside Down

He sits across from me
on the 8.14 train,
his eyes keen on the bottom half
of his folded tabloid,
I read the poem hanging upside down
on the back of his paper,
its silenced voice smelling of curdled ink,
its forced smile overturned into grief,
its wordless monochrome arms,
flapping like oversized shrouds,
unable to hold up the new world order.
He looks up and smiles politely,
turning the page.



Micropoetry Month: Nov 2017: #16

Micropoetry MonthSeems like a Shadorma kind of morning! If you’re new to the form, it is a six line poem following the 3/5/3/3/7/5 syllable count.
Give it a shot or share any micropoem using comments or Mister Linky.



evening train
for a little while
it was us
and the sun
and our words briefly touching
through the dark tunnels


in his bag
buried in a book
about birds
and fairies
a bent origami crane
that would never fly


The Trouble with Tanka-3

the geese have gone
we fill the spaces in the autumn sky
with blue fistfuls of cold,
your lips darkened by warm sake
your eyes bright as the distant moon


the moon leans closer-
the garden becomes a lily patch
then a dragonfly on a blade of grass,
I brush snowflakes from your hair
I feel the half smile on your lips


all through the night
the first frost formed, all through the night
the last train kept going-
by the lake, the quiet waited,
for the last ripple to fade

Fujiwara no Teika’s Tanka Technique 3: . Elegant beauty – urawashiki tei, characterised by harmony, balance, and beauty of cadence.
The  Trouble with Tanka-2

When I missed the 09:55

there were furrows
on her forehead,
disappearing like subway tracks,
lines that climbed out
from her weary dimple
like trains out of City Station;

she was softer
under the naked light bulb,
incandescent matter
poised mid-whirl,
a momentary flicker
in Rumi’s eyes,
an afterthought
caught in the maelstrom
of an incoming chant;

her face translucent,
the edges blurring
into the aura
weaving round her head;
inviting me to read
the empty pages,
words like thoughts
had pulled away
over the years;

i met her
on an empty platform,
a long way from today,
the me that i could be,
standing alone,
with a smile
and a purple umbrella;
in her bag-
the book I am writing,
weathered and lonesome;

she watched me run
towards the 09.55,
shaking off raindrops
from an imagined ache,
her wrinkled hands
held my arm
for just a moment,
not so fast,
her trembling voice said,
not so fast, my dear,
go craft me
in your own time,
one unsure step
trailing another,
just feel the lines
cross through your heart,
they will come,
for now
just slow down
and mind the gap.

And Smile…

Every time she smiled, she died a little more.

His voice waited, huddled on decrepit platforms in an old grey blanket, peering down the tracks. She thought she heard him through the window, a mocking blur, the stiffly bent vowels a familiar tune, her lips coating half-forgotten words, trembling as the melody rose to find tunnels between nameless stars that hung like abandoned cities in the sky. They had not spoken in years. Not since that train pulled away.

She turned as she heard the key turn in the lock, grabbed her fallen smile, chipped and bent like a pair of well worn spectacles, and let it settle on the bruised bridge of her mouth.

on the fresh snow
squirrel tracks
in both directions

The Way

he boarded at noon,
frail in his mud patterned robes,
casting no shadow
on the platform that had forgotten its name;

we let the silence drip into the space between us,
the empty sound, a misshapen cup between strangers,
collecting smells and voices and half-seen landscapes,
that the senses discard like oversized clothes,

as wheels and tracks count the seconds,
the dusty breath of the summer fields
streams hot against our bodies, bent politely away,
trapped in a time frame thrust through a restless carriage window;

I woke up to the shrieking hush of a motionless train,
the hard berth pushing my bones into an alien light,
he was staring into the dew threaded morning,
his lips moving in an unbroken prayer

something (or someone) is dead on the tracks,
four hours we’ve been standing here, a woman said,
I saw his dark ringed eyes floating like unslept oil
over the trembling azure of his face,

I threw off the blanket of sin and despair
that had slumbered with me all night,
journeys cannot be between two points,
his stillness asked, what do you call arriving?

I leapt down from my lofty height
my naked feet seeking the floor beside his,
I let a ripple break in our brimming cup,
Sir, can I bring you some tea?

Linked to Dverse Poets where the prompt is “Travel” – Because there’s nothing quite like travelling in a second class train compartment across India…an entire lifetime of experiences crammed into a few hours!