Saturday, June 21, 2008

The Slum-dweller

Curled inside a concrete pipe
Under the bridge
They had lived
Their hearts thudding against ribs,
As each trained clattered
And faded into distance.

Where they slept once
There’s now shredded concrete:
Naked bricks and rubble,
Chewed by mighty machines
Of the city fathers
Who said, “Of outsiders we must be free,
To build roads and Metros.”

The children, they cried
And cried to sleep
Till their throats were hoarse
And tongues dry, parched
Their hunger insatiate
From food foraged in garbage.

They were awaiting a peaceful tomorrow,
When today’s hubbub didn’t end
And the dream of a future
Faded before their eyes
The place they sqatted and shat
Became the swimming pool of a tower
The open place they went to fuck, a car park.

Together they journeyed
To a piece of sodden land
By the nullah in which floated scum and plastic
To a new life
A new beginning,
A new place to defecate
A new place to procreate.

Sunday, June 01, 2008

Poet in Intensive Care Unit (ICU)

Yes, it’s lonely in the ICU
These machines will cease
Once I stop exhaling,
So I should go on, exist,
At least, to keep their mechanics going.

No blip, blip of my heart
Will be heard ever again,
No words, no rhyme, no crude comment,
No fights, no threats,
On my forum, or on my blog
If I cease this struggle
To keep these machines alive.

These contraptions, they embrace me,
Their tentacles, tubes,
Pin me down
Enclose me,
Twine a tightly choking grip
As if they are scared of losing me.

If I were I to break out
And reach for pen and paper
To make a small note
Scribble a short Haiku
Perhaps, a Villanelle
No, a short Sonnet
About the summer’s passing
Outside the blinded ICU windows;
And if I do that
I will recover from afflictions
They would be bereft and orphaned.

I must exist, yes, I should,
For these machines they would die otherwise.