Saturday, 23 June 2012

For Nirmal Ranjith Devasiri

We don’t agree,
my friend and I,
we don’t agree to disagree
but we intersect
at commonalities
respect and decency
the worth of scholarship
the privileging of debate;
we have different premise-platforms
and so,
my friend and I
we disagree.

But he is a father and so am I
he has a daughter, I have two
some third rate punk snoops around
and he gets upset;
I would too.

They’ve come with a claim:
‘From the top’;
they’ve come
and it matters not
if claim is true or false,
it matters only
that claim is a possible,
it matters also
that my friend is friend
but more than this,
he is citizen
and even more than that
he speaks his mind.

He speaks
and therefore
I can speak too;
and so I speak here
so he can speak louder.
[I will not stand shoulder-to-shoulder
with every chip-shouldered
out-of-power, want-power
loud-mouthed objector;
for I pick and choose my company,
may I add?]

My friend and I
we disagree
but there’s never been
and never will be
one word in anger.

I stand with him,
without hesitation,
and with utmost pride.


Thursday, 21 June 2012

The evolutions of man

Petty thief
Share-market manipulator
Corporate Big Wig, philanthropist, politician.

Tall story spinner
Habitual liar
Media spinner
Media moghul, lawyer, politician
School bully
Street fighter
Contract killer
Gang leader
Godfather, philanthropist, politician. 

Social drinker
Drug Lord, campaign-financier, politician.


Wednesday, 20 June 2012

The vaekanda song

Vaekandiya is vantage-point;
You can soak in
the union of sunset and tree-line
or let its innumerable lessons
clothe or pass over,
life ripples to you
as water and wind
thotupola chit-chat
the beats of clothes-wash
and on the other side
by and by
the festival of fireflies
the dusk symphony
of vakkada and insects
the gutterality of the buffalo;
and to this place
comes household and squabble
and timeless tales of
life passing torch to life
the wounding of seizure
submission by the weak
equanimity of the wise,
it’s a tenurial narrative
of multi-crop extraction
that perfects the mind’s insistent questionnaire,
but cripples the researcher’s query;
loses itself in treatise
to be misquoted and re-misquoted
to conclude that the vaekanda must go
for smudging blueprint of betterment.


Tuesday, 19 June 2012

Pahiyan Man

So they’ve found a skeleton,
with food-remnant and implement-shard,
somewhere in Pahiyangala,
that eff-peed cave
branded for profit
where Fa-Hien may have tarried
but probably did not;
and now, ancient man
of just part skull and part limb,
rudely woken
from 20,000 years of slumber
give or take a century
or two
do you speak of that time
or have you come to tell us who we are,
us of the grave-digging century
of processed food and polythene wrapper,
scavenging litterers
and literary excavators,
fascinated with date
terrified of destiny,
are you here to remind:
‘History is a safe resident
I know.’?


Monday, 18 June 2012

A note on always-things

Rain there always was
and always will be
it’s met with umbrella and indoor
raincoat and into-the-bus-stop-rush;
there will be sun and night,
sunglasses and light;
there are disease days
of vaccination and quarantine
boiled-cooled water and koththamalli,
there is ignorance
battered to submission by knowledge,
there are houses in flames
and there’s douse-attempt;
there are recurring things
and structured things,
so don’t tell me
‘poverty there will always be’
don’t tell me: ‘tyranny there will always be’
don’t say ‘these things have always been the same’
for when bad-breath thug is in your face
you move away
or sock him in the jaw.
Bad breath breathing is a choice,
let’s say.