Eid Mubarak (Happy Eid) !


Minarets stood like lighthouses over the sea of taqiyahs*,

Lent out was a gigantic shade for the sons of Allah,

As if, the Sun bowed along with a million bows,

On speakers Holy prayers rolled, kissed the skies,

Trickled down the Masjid stairs, sank into the atmosphere,

Smiles in piles, greetings and hugs followed,

Jingled bangles, atar heavy the air, rang laughter galore,

Kebabs, sweets, jewelry and clothes,

Shops ran along the road like the never ending shore…


(On Id-ul-Zuha, from the Jama Masjid, New Delhi, India , October 16, 2013)

* taqiyah – is a short, rounded cap worn by Muslims, across the world to emulate Muhammad. It is a must for men to wear them while offering prayers.



Image Credits:




Dragon’s Inn


Welcome to the Dragon’s Inn,

Standing shady, luring sins,

A villainous desire draws you in,

A dip into comfort lethally seductive,

Your surrender to a deeper sink seems compulsive,

Into those dingy lanes, you’ve to report,

And, then time’s lost gazing the Red Fort,

Every morning, you try stroking out brave,

Departure is then only what you crave,

You beg futile to step out clean,

Now, out of your hands, life’s quietly slipping out, unseen,

Will devour you slow, scrub out all your sheen,

The ‘HI’ is yours, while the ‘GOODBYE’ is his,

There’s no looking back now,

Once in the grip of Delhi’s Djinn,

You gotta pay up for your share of Bliss…


(As felt by an outstanding student of the Liberal Arts from a Prestigious American University.

A step into the Dragon’s Inn and now Delhi’s Djinn has her. She resides on the streets of Paharganj Delhi, selling herself to almost anyone and everyone, for a mere Fix.)




Image Credit : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_hCVjreYp1E









The sky screamed Sunless,

Broke loose crashed, gone unbearable,

Seeds of her follies, her tangles under the table,

Her moments with June – moist stress,

In howls, her man summoned menace,

Ravaged the land then, children of Eros,

Danced casanova, those faithless droplets,

Washed away, into the drain gurgled down her character,

Weighed down, impossible another slithery escape,

Cries unattended, septic now this disaster,

She bears his lashes silent, he scorns aloud in pain,

Panting a wet blue to a dim gray disdain,

Trickles to the ground, love’s last button,

She is running out of her sailing cotton,

Panic-stricken, slipping out naked, her disgrace…





Image Credit : http://www.hindustantimes.com

Driven Blind


Release that clutch of yours,

Let that support go,

Can you then stand through that ride on the metro?

You could if you weren’t driven that mad,

Driven tipsy-curvy, halting screechy, driven that bad,

In search of that killer smile, that stranger crave,

Into that wardrobe of shoulders,

Scrolling past those slinging bags, young eyes on a survey,

The laptop man glances smart,

Shares his eyes to the screen and her,

Nodding, she raises over her partner’s shoulder,

Eyed is her hero anonymous, sketched erased,

Sketched erased, her moments of dark fantasy,

You see we’re too busy,

We’ve to ride through,

Blue-eyed through our blues,

To rub some life, win some dough,

To win the best of hers,

Then oil her chocolate, melt down her raised eyebrow,

We‘re safe and satisfied at the hands of the driver,

Ones that we handed over our matchless screwdriver,

We’ll let them run us, ruin us their way,

Steer us blind in our own lust,

Then bottle us, labeled the hottest sauce on display,

Weren’t we the ones in for a change?

The hot blooded, fearless of the lull after the rains,

We’ve never bothered to let that clutch go off and see,

To despise being driven, being at their mercy,

We’ve never bothered trying to run the show…




Image from : http://pxylem.blogspot.in/2007/12/delhi-metro-rail-in-and-out.html

Slums of Kandivali


Across the road,

Flourished another world,

The one brazen, unpolished,

One, sans the glass, the elevator and the décor,

The one that would never make it to the skies,

Might, only paint more green patches brown, only stretch to suffice,

In here is no business for the booted and the employed,

It is from here that cheap menial labour is deployed,

Amidst dirty parlours, dirtier bars, open drains and stony mud paths,

Breeds headless greed, short cuts to heal fates that are meant to bleed,

Amidst the stench of minerals therein, filthy liquor and spiked weed,

Fuelled by reflections of a shining Mumbai, its bright and golden beams,

Thrives hot aspirations, hotter dreams,

Some are eroded infertile, fragile on vision-less shoulders weak,

Some slither focused on scales of tactics,

On illegal buoys sail quietly on the sea of illiteracy,

Towards a shore concrete, green with a turf of prestige,

To mingle, then vanish unnoticed into whiter layers of that city…


( Kandivali, or Kandivli is a suburb of Mumbai of Maharashtra, India, for more, visit :http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kandivali)


Image from : http://www.panoramio.com

Pink Paharganj


Dusk licks the old Banyan,

Shuts her pores with a kiss,

Ogles at the crows to send them cranky, alarmed,

That deity resting on that vintage stump is served her lamp,


Lights flick white in that dingy sea of trade,

Reflects in eyes, shining ready for their prey,

Confident of languished hungry visits from the brightest of minds, gone astray,

Some Bags on the go, some await hooked, some packed personal, some for sale,

Stranger eyes are read, flung across are ropes of trust, unsaid,

When a ‘need’ sounds good, it is then understood,

Fools you the stoner’s paraphernalia, peace t-shirts, cargoes on the row,

Action turns into those narrower lanes, shoulder-wide alleys,

Hazy deals, suspicious frowns, then broader smiles and hugs,

Slither sly; make it hush and quiet, in and out in dying daylight,

A fresh wait, a fresh hit, no bait’s needed in this hole of the sphere,

Sucks you to those minstrels of pleasure for a share of their concealed treasure,

Hands in hands with the God of Urge, you tread in here,

The evening calls, triggers her daily moan,

Hails you for more, a Pink Paharganj…



(From the streets of Paharganj, the hippie back-packers paradise in New Delhi, India, known for its concentration of affordable hotels, lodges, restaurants, dhabas (North Indian road-side eateries) and a wide variety of shops catering to both domestic travellers and foreign tourists, especially backpackers and low-budget travellers. Over the years it has become particularly popular as a haunt for international cuisine and everything that a soul on the lookout for fun and pleasure can end up thinking of. For more on Paharganj, visit: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paharganj )



Images from :http://darkhartetravel.wordpress.comhttp://shafisaxena-sightseer.blogspot.inhttp://web.stagram.com

My White Mare


Gallops in my White Mare,

Arrogant, she seems to have pledged,

Won’t let me stand and ogle,

Swifter than the clouds, faster than the Hare,

She’ll swim the oceans, run the land,

Preserve me dry, on my skin those crystals of sand,

We’ll wade across the Bay of Bengal into Port Blair,

On to those blue beaches shining to conceal the Human Zoo*,

She seems to have promised herself,

She’ll fetch me love, truck and boat me to your Lair,

Gallops in my White Mare,

Arrogant, she seems to have pledged,

Enough of your absence, now she’ll dare,

She’ll piggyback me to you, make it fair,

Have you “a statue with a wide-eyed stare”,

She’ll piggyback me to the End of this Nightmare,

Gallops in my White Mare…



*Human Zoo – The Andaman and Nicobar Islands on the Bay Bengal is a popular tourist locale, famous for letting tourists tread into its interiors to catch a glimpse of a multitude of scattered and rare ethnic tribes in their natural habitat.

Lately, the court has banned all commercial and tourism activities within a five-km radius of the Jarawa Tribal Reserve on the Andaman and Nicobar Islands.  For more, visit:




Image from : http://www.glogster.com

Ride of Pride!!! (Chapter 2)


Smartness not on their cards,

Stranded in a long long queue without smart-cards,

Serpentine, it crisscrossed the station,

Ones on the tail had their feet down in the stairs,

Unfortunately, all not smart enough this time,

They were indeed, running out of patience,

Big notes for small fares,

Quarrels for balances,

Exchanged are red-eyed glances

Verbal tussles through the token counter glass,

Staring out of his ways timid,

The official in blue did put up a lot of fuss,

Amongst swarming security, he was confident, he was protected,

“Impossible! No change! “, he often quoted,

Possibility crept in late,

Slower than a snail,

Amidst irritated whines, and angry wails,

The queue moved ahead,

Though, feet ceaselessly added,

Two other counters, two chairs and two computers,

Remained closed, remained deserted,

One man for a thousand travelers,

One by one, killed peak-hour minutes and seconds of daily passengers,

Made sure its length remained the same,

Made sure you remain pissed,

Throughout, your mood’s unchanged,

Chirping among themselves,

The multitude murmured dissatisfied, restless,

Played a constant multilingual hiss,

Awestruck, stood the family,

Felt as if they were pleading a ride for free,

She looked down in dismay,

She’d never expected it to begin this way,

For her it was hard to swim out of a sea of delusion,

“Wait n’ watch, there’s more in store, honey,

Only time shall clear your confusion,”

Read her husband’s face,

As he rejoiced her disgrace,

Her grin of pride mellowed down,

Now it only lingered below her frown,

In thirty minutes, and some more for the ticket-man,

Accentuated English flows from behind the glass,

It took him some more time to understand,

Finally could they reach those soldiers in green, booted brown,

Squeezed their pockets, jerked their flesh, shook their spirits unstable,

Squeezed his belly, rubbed their thighs, and legs, frisked them for metal,

For seconds, with legs wide apart, they were made to stand,

Out of her curtains separate, scared of her absentminded family,

She chose to preserve the riding coins in her bag, carefully,

Towards the platform, smiles back on face,

For, these were their moments, in grace,

Three minutes to the train,

Little aware of what’s coming up next,

Those fancy earphones on his ears would be hanging out of place,

Busy on his phone, the young lad will soon end up depressed,

He would rather choose not to fiddle with his gadget, or try to text,

Coming up was a ride that would simply blow away their brains…



(The NRI (Non Residential Indian) family (on their first trip to the city, ever since the lady left home for shores abroad, while, still a child) will soon board the train to realize the age-old myth, once again, “All that Glitters is not Gold.” )

To be continued…



Images from : http://chasingthemetro.wordpress.com, http://www.thehindu.com

Lend them your Senses…


O Maestros, Masters of trade,

Royal bards presented factories of bread,

Fingers that pluck strings of gold,

Pen down verses that never grey,

Never grow old,

Lend your ears to the flower,

Step into gardens, fresh,

Away from limelight, the yellow haze,

You might discover green grief,

Hear petals mourn,

Butterflies scream,

Kneeling down stamens weep,

Moaning summons of concealed ovaries,

Lend your eyes to the flower,

You might find pistils trying to watchtower,

Stigmas acting scented radars,

Sepals craving an embrace,

Waiting for a role in your songs,

Waiting to step out off mortal boundaries,

Into your verses perennial,

O Maestros, Masters of trade,

Dig some time for their songs,

If, not mine…


Let my songs wither away,

Ring unheard till my last breath,

Let me croak out my years,

Like the forgotten toad,

Unsee me,

Miss out on my colors, my unique existence…


Step into wilder lawns,

Rest your bare soles on undisciplined grass,

Beautify young, new pastures,

They join flowers in lament,

To weave Utopian wails for you,

Hoping, Longing,

Someday, they reach you…


Widen your stare,

Reach out to nooks and corners, once in a while,

To the unlit gardens,

Waiting to gift you a smile,

Taste unscathed honey,

Plummet in virgin talent,

O Maestros, Masters of trade,

Lend them your senses,

To their unattended mystery,

Dig some time for their songs,

If, not mine, before you sediment away into history…


(A poet, wandering lonely at the talent fuming, Jaipur Literature Festival, 2013)




(Image from : http://thakurrajesh.hubpages.com )

Shillong’s Immaculate Cappuccino…


Slim walled streets,

Tango of blades,

Early chops on the wood,

Butchers at pork,

Beggars and Bums on that meaty roadside,

Cobbled in breaks,

Pimpled with manholes,

Pinched with open drains,

For hungry dogs to sniff,

Their anonymous masters to spit,

Twist and turned, the road,

The wall followed in embrace,

Ran ceaseless to its left,

Sleepless shop-keeping eyes stare wide,

Through gaps in between hanging slabs of skinless flesh,

Look up to refresh,

Up at the shiny chairs,

Gleaming in white,

Awaiting buttocks in groups of three,

Sparkling contrast in bleak sunlight,

On the neatly trimmed green grass,

Atop the wall along that road,

Two coffee-shop umbrellas posing a joke,

Challenging the mighty unbeatable Meghalayan clouds,

Faint rays, a weak shine reach the seated couple, the coffee air,

Silence prevailed, as caffeine fought the chill,

Naughty morning mourning at the wall-top CCD,

Trembling lips, biting guilt,

Eyes laboring, strolling away to hide,

Two spirits, desperate to change into disguise,

Hardened pores, their skin,

Carpets of tiny thorns,

Still erect, hair on their limbs,

Witnesses to frivolous hours that just went by,

Their madness, that reckless hilly night,

Now, the morning breeze was calming them down,

Slapping realization, hard against their faces,

Turned in different directions of Shillong,

Distance at last,

Over cups of Cappuccino, immaculate…





(Images from asklaila.com; nyunews.com)