Making light of serious stuff : short verse


Friday, July 14, 2006

Boobs are more important than husbands

"Hubbies are available, in this world,dime a dozen
Hard to come by are boobies of the proper sizen*"

(A woman was accused of poisoning her Marine husband and using money from his life insurance policy to get her breasts enlarged.)

Posted by jagannath rao :: 3:18 AM :: 0 Comments:

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---------------------------------------
The foot and mouth disease

The Chinese are these days putting their foot in the mouth
It seems they had picked up the disease in the White House.

(China reports new outbreak of foot and mouth disease.)

Posted by jagannath rao :: 3:09 AM :: 0 Comments:

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---------------------------------------
The Scottish kids are taught to be great scholars

The Scottish school kids learn basics
Of how to blow their noses
Advanced topics like how to pick their noses
Will be taught in higher courses

("Scottish primary school students to be taught how to blow their nose.")

Posted by jagannath rao :: 3:05 AM :: 0 Comments:

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---------------------------------------
We enjoy their didactic prose

The oil companies cannot accept public morals loose
Especially in their less oily moments they tend to be verbose
The use of food crops as biofuels they vociferously oppose.

("Shell Oil considers using food crops to make biofuels "morally inappropriate." )

Posted by jagannath rao :: 3:01 AM :: 0 Comments:

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---------------------------------------
He gained a wife and lost a buffalo

The man from Malaysia is not at all a lucky fellow
This season he gained a wife but lost a buffalo.


(An indigenous man in Malaysia's Sabah state on Borneo Island was fined a buffalo and a pig for breaking a tribal custom by secretly marrying a second wife.)

Posted by jagannath rao :: 2:55 AM :: 0 Comments:

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---------------------------------------

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

French fries are Victoria's secrets

The average American breast size has gone up from 34B to 36C.
Ah,a teat-routed nexus between Victoria's Secrets and French fries makers.

Posted by jagannath rao :: 10:08 AM :: 0 Comments:

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---------------------------------------
It is the size that matters

The judge commits the genitals case to the small cases court
Finally it is the size that decides the jurisdiction, you see.

(Student sues over yearbook photo showing his exposed genitals. Judge throws case out saying “It’s not that big a deal”, suggests student re-file in small claims court.)

Posted by jagannath rao :: 6:01 AM :: 0 Comments:

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---------------------------------------
We want new members

In our nudist camp we are happy that we have no laundry bills
Only it is boring to look at the same old members listlessly hanging.

Posted by jagannath rao :: 5:59 AM :: 0 Comments:

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---------------------------------------
My girl's arousal begins in my wallet

Scientists say a woman's arousal begins in her brain
Oddly enough my girl's begins in the bulge of my pouch.

Posted by jagannath rao :: 5:56 AM :: 0 Comments:

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---------------------------------------
Art for ants' sake

For art's sake we stand naked against the tree in cling-film
Big black ants are playing havoc with our sensitivities.


(Naked students in Colombia attach themselves to trees in cling-film in the name of art.)

Posted by jagannath rao :: 5:49 AM :: 0 Comments:

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---------------------------------------

Monday, June 26, 2006

Babies and hello kitties

In India they make babies by the dozen
In Japan they make hello kitties in zen

Posted by jagannath rao :: 3:08 PM :: 0 Comments:

Post a Comment

---------------------------------------
Global warming is not the issue

Searing summer heat pushes up tennis skirts
Here,global warming is hardly the issue

Posted by jagannath rao :: 3:07 PM :: 0 Comments:

Post a Comment

---------------------------------------
Powerpoint presentation

The board ratified the project manager's suicide
So convincing was his power point presentation.

Posted by jagannath rao :: 3:01 PM :: 0 Comments:

Post a Comment

---------------------------------------
Superman

A loony Krishh fan leapt from the balcony
A leg decked in white now hangs in the air.

Posted by jagannath rao :: 2:58 PM :: 0 Comments:

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---------------------------------------

Saturday, January 14, 2006

Best bee advice in town

If you are caught in a bee attack without your suit
From the scene we recommend strongly to scoot.

Posted by jagannath rao :: 3:24 AM :: 0 Comments:

Post a Comment

---------------------------------------

Thursday, May 26, 2005



LIFE IN CHENNAI


Fifty bhaiyyas

Fifty bhaiyyas polished the wooden railings
Of a five-star hotel all through the day
For wages equal to its price of a mineral water bottle.


The Coom River

The Coom river wore a glistening black satin dress
All the jasmines in the Chennai women's hair
Are not enough to cancel its offensive odour.



Beggars in the temple


Beggars in the Chennai temples
Are heavy with metal but light on stomachs
An eight percent inflation has taken its toll .


Super-speciality hospitals

Conscientious surgeons
Perform complicated surgeries
Even for common colds
They have stiff targets, you see.


Speeding water tankers


Speeding water tankers knock down
One pedestrian per trip
They get paid on number of trips per day.




The doorman of the five-star hotel

The moustachioed doorman of the five-star hotel
Has opened his house-door ,as a matter of habit,
Even to the early morning milkman.


Driver Minnal

Singapore-returned driver Minnal remains a bachelor
He could not find a sophisticated bride
Who can converse with him at his level.





On a rainy day

On a rainy morning the Chennai office-goer
Reaches office just in time for the night shift


Posted by jagannath rao :: 3:15 AM :: 4 Comments:

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---------------------------------------

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

The professional pickpocket

A light-fingered man picks hip-pockets
Entirely between the beach and Tambaram
The police lovingly call him “Pitambaram”

Posted by jagannath rao :: 12:06 PM :: 0 Comments:

Post a Comment

---------------------------------------

Monday, August 16, 2004



Greencards and greenbacks


We saw them laughing
In beween their smirks
Trying to catch our attention
We really didn’t care
Our gait reflected confidence
Deep under there were sounds
Of reverberating emptiness
Our shirts had no front pockets
We clutched at our hearts
A cell phone ring in the pocket
Would directly send waves
Our hearts are in their places
We were going about on our business
In our green safari suits
Wearing our best Seico watches
We also spoke Indian English
With our vernacular accents
Why were they laughing
And crying in turns ,without reason,
In our country we love all men
As our brothers and women as aunts .

On the BPO circuit we laughed at them
Our men and women took just a few rupees
To take care of their washing machines
And their micro-oven machines
We wrote all their medicines
On scraps of papers in legible type
We stopped blaming our colleges
And the Government long long ago
They taught us English comprehensible
To neither our countrymen nor to the English
We are still proud of our English skills
Our NRI novelists wrote exotic English
To win Pushcart prizes and Pulitzer awards
Our clerks are English keyboard-friendly
We all love dearly our dollars harvested
In their country’s Java and Oracle fields
We really don’t care if they laugh and cry
In turns , calling us names as long as
Our greenback is forty seven crisp rupees.

Posted by jagannath rao :: 7:41 AM :: 0 Comments:

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---------------------------------------

Tuesday, July 20, 2004

The Night Safari

 
 
 
All through the stillness of the night
The wind howled in the bamboo clump
The bamboo bushes danced in rapture 
In the inky darkness our searchlight beamed
On shadowy forms of  giant-sized bisons
Their luminous eyes stared in unconcern
The creatures of the wild refused to appear
A night safari was just not their idea of fun .


Posted by jagannath rao :: 2:24 AM :: 2 Comments:

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---------------------------------------

Thursday, July 15, 2004

Free Rides in Bihar

 
Fun-loving villagers squatted on the train's top
Open -to- the sky rides are not chargeable
Under the Indian Railways Act, you see.
 
 
 
 
Treatment for your soul
---------------------------------------
 
A  cherubic little boy tickled your sole
He had just mopped the floor under your feet
On the implied promise of a fifty-paise coin.
 
 
 
 
Three eunuchs of Borivli
 
Three hijras clapped and sang feistily before you
Only a tenner would hasten their departure.
 

  
 
They want to book their 5' into 2' space
 
Eager berth-seekers hovered around the conductor
Like a halo of monsoon moths around a moving lantern.
 
 

  
 
Thirst-quenching in Bardoli station
 
Hygiene-conscious  a/c passengers
Shooed away the matka girl
A streetsmart vendor had just sold them
Roadside tap water in an old Kinley bottle.
 
 

  
 
Lock ,chain and box
 
The Raipur businessman sprawled on the top berth
Had chainlocked his suitcase to the seat
In the morning he found everything gone, 
Lock, chain and box .

 


Posted by jagannath rao :: 10:21 PM :: 0 Comments:

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---------------------------------------

Wednesday, July 14, 2004

Designs on our grandma

The six'o clock train puffed outside our backyard
Spraying little black stars
On our grandmother's wet white saree




Silhouettes

The railway guard's flickering lantern
Painted exciting silhouettes
Of the trackside bushes .

Posted by jagannath rao :: 9:37 PM :: 0 Comments:

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---------------------------------------

Tuesday, July 13, 2004

In our childhood we conquered King George

Imperial King George
Vanished without trace
As our one-anna coin
Flattened under the goods train.


Parallel lines do meet


The rails of our Sompeta station
Met in the distant hillocks
Proving our geometry teacher entirely wrong.


We dont depend upon wireless



We have put our ears to the rail
The eight'o clock local is on time.



The canine railway inspector



The mongrel in our station comes out briefly
To inspect the non-stop Coromandel express
And then goes back to its sleep under the cement bench



Dont take them for granted !


The goods train rakes
Are waiting impatiently for the engines
They are not to be loose-shunted , you see.

Who will eat my idlis ?


Caterer Krishnan is worried sick
The two hours delay of Charminar express
Will render his idli batter entirely waste.


Fuel-efficiency

Cyclist Velappan crawled through the railway crossing
Holding the cycle above the gate
The tempo driver cursed his luck
His engine had to splutter for full five minutes .

Posted by jagannath rao :: 11:10 PM :: 0 Comments:

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---------------------------------------

Thursday, July 08, 2004



A matter of inside pride

Tirupur upholds our men's honour
And our women's modesty
A matter of inside pride
For its undying undie industry .



Wiping the population

Erode's thriving bath-towel industry
Threatens to wipe(not off)
The population of the entire country.

Posted by jagannath rao :: 9:51 PM :: 0 Comments:

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---------------------------------------


On the Mathura-Delhi highway
------------------------------


Big black bears
Dance dutifully on the highway
To douse their master's hunger-fires



Mother Kali


Mother Kali’s magnificent lidless eyes
Were moist with maternal tears
As Bengal squirmed at her bygone glory
The loss of yesteryears’ literature trophy
Has left its bhadralok bewildered and bereft,entirely.



Posted by jagannath rao :: 1:45 AM :: 0 Comments:

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---------------------------------------

Tuesday, June 29, 2004



Death by a train
-------------------
The kiss of a speeding train
Mother earth's embrace
Crescendo of clackety clackety
Then opaque darkness .


The Sun and the Moon
-------------------------------

The sky was a loft
Where children played
An old hag's broom pushed it up
The children now the sun and the moon .


The butterfly
-------------------
Stinging, stinking caterpillar
Ate beauty-holes in our cheekoo leaves
And disappeared into
The rainbow outside our compound.

The Eagle
--------------

Elf-like the she-eagle's call
Fanned out like
Gulmohur's flames
Towards the silver-lined sky-dome.

The plane that did not take off
--------------------------------

The grounded plane
With injured wing
Staved our take-off to heaven
By not flying.



Man and dog
----------------

Dog's leash tied to walker
Dog and man walk
Who is walking whom .



The old man
---------------

A string cot under a mango tree
A marigold-surrounded thatched hut
Announce his stubborn earthly presence .



The tribal woman
---------------------

Ebony-backed tribal woman burns her mouth
With lighted cigar inside ,flickering
Like a firefly trapped in a rock crevice.



Girls
-----

Girls threw stones in charcoal-drawn squares
Their pigtails wavered , ding-dong,
As they jumped over the squares ,one-legged.


The watchman in Hong Kong
-------------------------

An ancient watchman watches a skyscraper
One-third of his age
The third in his watchman?s career.

The station master's colours
----------------------------

At ten the Madras express chugs in
Not stopping but a possibility
If the station master thought red ,not green .



A shadow man
--------------


The winter fire swelled
Pushing shadow man to wall
Thence to the mango tree.


The bench in the park
----------------------


Sunlight sieved by the pipal tree
Played on the spread-out newspaper
And the trouser legs.



Bush
------


The brown parched land
Ran to Sahyadri mountains
Starting from a lonely shrub.



The backyard visitor
--------------------

Six a.m. the bulbul arrived
Our backyard worms forgot
It was his breakfast time.






A view from the rooftop
-----------------------


The traffic centipede
Stops briefly at zebra?s feet
And crawls on.



My own little moon
--------------------


In my childhood my moon
Hid behind a coconut tree
A skyscraper in America now hides it .


A plastic bag
--------------

A highwayside shrub
Blooms a coloured plastic bag
Puffed up by passing wind .




The empty park bench
--------------------

He is not seen on the bench these days
A cigarette stub
Continues to announce him.



Mr. Sparrow
------------

Mr. Sparrow drove away
His rival from the mirror
Only to find him back again.
.



Waves in the Gateway of India
-------------------------------

Beating waves
Fail to kiss
Dangling child feet.


Posted by jagannath rao :: 1:43 AM :: 1 Comments:

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---------------------------------------

Monday, June 28, 2004



A one-legged crow
-----------------
A one-legged crow
Broke away from night
Announcing dawn.


The Town Crier
--------------
A one-legged crow
Announces pilgrim arrivals
In the temple town.


Mom is not responsible
----------------------

A baby monkey
Hitches midair rides on mummy
On own responsibility.

The Old Lighthouse in Vizag
------------------
The old lighthouse
Lost its licking flames
In a puerile painting .




Posted by jagannath rao :: 11:49 PM :: 0 Comments:

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---------------------------------------


The teaboy

A six-year-old teaboy counts cups
For each broken cup he loses
Half a day’s wages.





The teastall in the Court


On a hot summer afternoon
As the arguments and tea became thinner
The vendor’s pockets became bulgier.


Posted by jagannath rao :: 11:45 PM :: 0 Comments:

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---------------------------------------

Saturday, May 22, 2004



Kolkata's kids
---------------

Kudos to Kolkata's kids
With lilywhite cheeks
And lightweight stomachs
Scrounging for food crumbs
In its garbage dumps
They keep the city clean
And our conscience clear.

-------------------------


The Footpath-sleeper of Kolkata
-------------------------------
The footpath-sleeper
Turned in his sleep, dreaming
Of a pretty pink ration card.



The old man in Sealdah Station
------------------------------
The eight'o clock local
Failed to wake up the old beggar
Sleeping on the Sealdah station.

-------------------------------------------------



Two pretty feet
---------------
Two pretty little feet, red and dead,
Zigzagged through the Park Circus traffic
On their last journey.
-----------------------------------------------------



The Old Pullcart Man
--------------------

The old pullcart man
Smoked away all his bidis in the Chowringhee jam
With nothing left for the Kalighat jam.
---------------------------------------------------------





Posted by jagannath rao :: 2:19 AM :: 0 Comments:

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---------------------------------------


On the election day in Kolkata


Green with envy

The footpath-sleeper of Paik Para
First turned red and then green
The sleeper on the Chowringhee footpath
Boasted an upmarket address.


Painting genius

Driver Mondol’s talented son
Paints election billboards
He gets full fifty bucks
For painting Mamata Didi’s chubby cheeks.




Heavy haulage

A hungry pullcartman hauled
A heavyset seth from Shyam Bazaar for money
Not enough even for mistidoi .



Violence in love

An old arthritic tram
Molested an artistic spinster bus
Transforming her into a dimpled beauty
.



It soots his lungs

The Shyam Bazaar cop breathes in diesel
As though it were eau-de-cologne
Under his snow-white uniform
His lungs are black as a sooty kitchen wall.










Posted by jagannath rao :: 1:42 AM :: 0 Comments:

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---------------------------------------
Making light of serious stuff : short verse

Friday, July 14, 2006

Boobs are more important than husbands

"Hubbies are available, in this world,dime a dozen
Hard to come by are boobies of the proper sizen*"

(A woman was accused of poisoning her Marine husband and using money from his life insurance policy to get her breasts enlarged.)

The foot and mouth disease

The Chinese are these days putting their foot in the mouth
It seems they had picked up the disease in the White House.

(China reports new outbreak of foot and mouth disease.)

The Scottish kids are taught to be great scholars

The Scottish school kids learn basics
Of how to blow their noses
Advanced topics like how to pick their noses
Will be taught in higher courses

("Scottish primary school students to be taught how to blow their nose.")

We enjoy their didactic prose

The oil companies cannot accept public morals loose
Especially in their less oily moments they tend to be verbose
The use of food crops as biofuels they vociferously oppose.

("Shell Oil considers using food crops to make biofuels "morally inappropriate." )

He gained a wife and lost a buffalo

The man from Malaysia is not at all a lucky fellow
This season he gained a wife but lost a buffalo.


(An indigenous man in Malaysia's Sabah state on Borneo Island was fined a buffalo and a pig for breaking a tribal custom by secretly marrying a second wife.)

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

French fries are Victoria's secrets

The average American breast size has gone up from 34B to 36C.
Ah,a teat-routed nexus between Victoria's Secrets and French fries makers.

It is the size that matters

The judge commits the genitals case to the small cases court
Finally it is the size that decides the jurisdiction, you see.

(Student sues over yearbook photo showing his exposed genitals. Judge throws case out saying “It’s not that big a deal”, suggests student re-file in small claims court.)

We want new members

In our nudist camp we are happy that we have no laundry bills
Only it is boring to look at the same old members listlessly hanging.

My girl's arousal begins in my wallet

Scientists say a woman's arousal begins in her brain
Oddly enough my girl's begins in the bulge of my pouch.

Art for ants' sake

For art's sake we stand naked against the tree in cling-film
Big black ants are playing havoc with our sensitivities.


(Naked students in Colombia attach themselves to trees in cling-film in the name of art.)

Monday, June 26, 2006

Babies and hello kitties

In India they make babies by the dozen
In Japan they make hello kitties in zen

Global warming is not the issue

Searing summer heat pushes up tennis skirts
Here,global warming is hardly the issue

Powerpoint presentation

The board ratified the project manager's suicide
So convincing was his power point presentation.

Superman

A loony Krishh fan leapt from the balcony
A leg decked in white now hangs in the air.

Saturday, January 14, 2006

Best bee advice in town

If you are caught in a bee attack without your suit
From the scene we recommend strongly to scoot.

Thursday, May 26, 2005

LIFE IN CHENNAI


Fifty bhaiyyas

Fifty bhaiyyas polished the wooden railings
Of a five-star hotel all through the day
For wages equal to its price of a mineral water bottle.


The Coom River

The Coom river wore a glistening black satin dress
All the jasmines in the Chennai women's hair
Are not enough to cancel its offensive odour.



Beggars in the temple


Beggars in the Chennai temples
Are heavy with metal but light on stomachs
An eight percent inflation has taken its toll .


Super-speciality hospitals

Conscientious surgeons
Perform complicated surgeries
Even for common colds
They have stiff targets, you see.


Speeding water tankers


Speeding water tankers knock down
One pedestrian per trip
They get paid on number of trips per day.




The doorman of the five-star hotel

The moustachioed doorman of the five-star hotel
Has opened his house-door ,as a matter of habit,
Even to the early morning milkman.


Driver Minnal

Singapore-returned driver Minnal remains a bachelor
He could not find a sophisticated bride
Who can converse with him at his level.





On a rainy day

On a rainy morning the Chennai office-goer
Reaches office just in time for the night shift

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

The professional pickpocket

A light-fingered man picks hip-pockets
Entirely between the beach and Tambaram
The police lovingly call him “Pitambaram”

Monday, August 16, 2004

Greencards and greenbacks


We saw them laughing
In beween their smirks
Trying to catch our attention
We really didn’t care
Our gait reflected confidence
Deep under there were sounds
Of reverberating emptiness
Our shirts had no front pockets
We clutched at our hearts
A cell phone ring in the pocket
Would directly send waves
Our hearts are in their places
We were going about on our business
In our green safari suits
Wearing our best Seico watches
We also spoke Indian English
With our vernacular accents
Why were they laughing
And crying in turns ,without reason,
In our country we love all men
As our brothers and women as aunts .

On the BPO circuit we laughed at them
Our men and women took just a few rupees
To take care of their washing machines
And their micro-oven machines
We wrote all their medicines
On scraps of papers in legible type
We stopped blaming our colleges
And the Government long long ago
They taught us English comprehensible
To neither our countrymen nor to the English
We are still proud of our English skills
Our NRI novelists wrote exotic English
To win Pushcart prizes and Pulitzer awards
Our clerks are English keyboard-friendly
We all love dearly our dollars harvested
In their country’s Java and Oracle fields
We really don’t care if they laugh and cry
In turns , calling us names as long as
Our greenback is forty seven crisp rupees.

Tuesday, July 20, 2004

The Night Safari

 
 
 
All through the stillness of the night
The wind howled in the bamboo clump
The bamboo bushes danced in rapture 
In the inky darkness our searchlight beamed
On shadowy forms of  giant-sized bisons
Their luminous eyes stared in unconcern
The creatures of the wild refused to appear
A night safari was just not their idea of fun .

Thursday, July 15, 2004

Free Rides in Bihar

 
Fun-loving villagers squatted on the train's top
Open -to- the sky rides are not chargeable
Under the Indian Railways Act, you see.
 
 
 
 
Treatment for your soul
---------------------------------------
 
A  cherubic little boy tickled your sole
He had just mopped the floor under your feet
On the implied promise of a fifty-paise coin.
 
 
 
 
Three eunuchs of Borivli
 
Three hijras clapped and sang feistily before you
Only a tenner would hasten their departure.
 

  
 
They want to book their 5' into 2' space
 
Eager berth-seekers hovered around the conductor
Like a halo of monsoon moths around a moving lantern.
 
 

  
 
Thirst-quenching in Bardoli station
 
Hygiene-conscious  a/c passengers
Shooed away the matka girl
A streetsmart vendor had just sold them
Roadside tap water in an old Kinley bottle.
 
 

  
 
Lock ,chain and box
 
The Raipur businessman sprawled on the top berth
Had chainlocked his suitcase to the seat
In the morning he found everything gone, 
Lock, chain and box .

 

Wednesday, July 14, 2004

Designs on our grandma

The six'o clock train puffed outside our backyard
Spraying little black stars
On our grandmother's wet white saree




Silhouettes

The railway guard's flickering lantern
Painted exciting silhouettes
Of the trackside bushes .

Tuesday, July 13, 2004

In our childhood we conquered King George

Imperial King George
Vanished without trace
As our one-anna coin
Flattened under the goods train.


Parallel lines do meet


The rails of our Sompeta station
Met in the distant hillocks
Proving our geometry teacher entirely wrong.


We dont depend upon wireless



We have put our ears to the rail
The eight'o clock local is on time.



The canine railway inspector



The mongrel in our station comes out briefly
To inspect the non-stop Coromandel express
And then goes back to its sleep under the cement bench



Dont take them for granted !


The goods train rakes
Are waiting impatiently for the engines
They are not to be loose-shunted , you see.

Who will eat my idlis ?


Caterer Krishnan is worried sick
The two hours delay of Charminar express
Will render his idli batter entirely waste.


Fuel-efficiency

Cyclist Velappan crawled through the railway crossing
Holding the cycle above the gate
The tempo driver cursed his luck
His engine had to splutter for full five minutes .

Thursday, July 08, 2004

A matter of inside pride

Tirupur upholds our men's honour
And our women's modesty
A matter of inside pride
For its undying undie industry .



Wiping the population

Erode's thriving bath-towel industry
Threatens to wipe(not off)
The population of the entire country.

On the Mathura-Delhi highway
------------------------------


Big black bears
Dance dutifully on the highway
To douse their master's hunger-fires



Mother Kali


Mother Kali’s magnificent lidless eyes
Were moist with maternal tears
As Bengal squirmed at her bygone glory
The loss of yesteryears’ literature trophy
Has left its bhadralok bewildered and bereft,entirely.


Tuesday, June 29, 2004

Death by a train
-------------------
The kiss of a speeding train
Mother earth's embrace
Crescendo of clackety clackety
Then opaque darkness .


The Sun and the Moon
-------------------------------

The sky was a loft
Where children played
An old hag's broom pushed it up
The children now the sun and the moon .


The butterfly
-------------------
Stinging, stinking caterpillar
Ate beauty-holes in our cheekoo leaves
And disappeared into
The rainbow outside our compound.

The Eagle
--------------

Elf-like the she-eagle's call
Fanned out like
Gulmohur's flames
Towards the silver-lined sky-dome.

The plane that did not take off
--------------------------------

The grounded plane
With injured wing
Staved our take-off to heaven
By not flying.



Man and dog
----------------

Dog's leash tied to walker
Dog and man walk
Who is walking whom .



The old man
---------------

A string cot under a mango tree
A marigold-surrounded thatched hut
Announce his stubborn earthly presence .



The tribal woman
---------------------

Ebony-backed tribal woman burns her mouth
With lighted cigar inside ,flickering
Like a firefly trapped in a rock crevice.



Girls
-----

Girls threw stones in charcoal-drawn squares
Their pigtails wavered , ding-dong,
As they jumped over the squares ,one-legged.


The watchman in Hong Kong
-------------------------

An ancient watchman watches a skyscraper
One-third of his age
The third in his watchman?s career.

The station master's colours
----------------------------

At ten the Madras express chugs in
Not stopping but a possibility
If the station master thought red ,not green .



A shadow man
--------------


The winter fire swelled
Pushing shadow man to wall
Thence to the mango tree.


The bench in the park
----------------------


Sunlight sieved by the pipal tree
Played on the spread-out newspaper
And the trouser legs.



Bush
------


The brown parched land
Ran to Sahyadri mountains
Starting from a lonely shrub.



The backyard visitor
--------------------

Six a.m. the bulbul arrived
Our backyard worms forgot
It was his breakfast time.






A view from the rooftop
-----------------------


The traffic centipede
Stops briefly at zebra?s feet
And crawls on.



My own little moon
--------------------


In my childhood my moon
Hid behind a coconut tree
A skyscraper in America now hides it .


A plastic bag
--------------

A highwayside shrub
Blooms a coloured plastic bag
Puffed up by passing wind .




The empty park bench
--------------------

He is not seen on the bench these days
A cigarette stub
Continues to announce him.



Mr. Sparrow
------------

Mr. Sparrow drove away
His rival from the mirror
Only to find him back again.
.



Waves in the Gateway of India
-------------------------------

Beating waves
Fail to kiss
Dangling child feet.

Monday, June 28, 2004

A one-legged crow
-----------------
A one-legged crow
Broke away from night
Announcing dawn.


The Town Crier
--------------
A one-legged crow
Announces pilgrim arrivals
In the temple town.


Mom is not responsible
----------------------

A baby monkey
Hitches midair rides on mummy
On own responsibility.

The Old Lighthouse in Vizag
------------------
The old lighthouse
Lost its licking flames
In a puerile painting .



The teaboy

A six-year-old teaboy counts cups
For each broken cup he loses
Half a day’s wages.





The teastall in the Court


On a hot summer afternoon
As the arguments and tea became thinner
The vendor’s pockets became bulgier.

Saturday, May 22, 2004

Kolkata's kids
---------------

Kudos to Kolkata's kids
With lilywhite cheeks
And lightweight stomachs
Scrounging for food crumbs
In its garbage dumps
They keep the city clean
And our conscience clear.

-------------------------


The Footpath-sleeper of Kolkata
-------------------------------
The footpath-sleeper
Turned in his sleep, dreaming
Of a pretty pink ration card.



The old man in Sealdah Station
------------------------------
The eight'o clock local
Failed to wake up the old beggar
Sleeping on the Sealdah station.

-------------------------------------------------



Two pretty feet
---------------
Two pretty little feet, red and dead,
Zigzagged through the Park Circus traffic
On their last journey.
-----------------------------------------------------



The Old Pullcart Man
--------------------

The old pullcart man
Smoked away all his bidis in the Chowringhee jam
With nothing left for the Kalighat jam.
---------------------------------------------------------




On the election day in Kolkata


Green with envy

The footpath-sleeper of Paik Para
First turned red and then green
The sleeper on the Chowringhee footpath
Boasted an upmarket address.


Painting genius

Driver Mondol’s talented son
Paints election billboards
He gets full fifty bucks
For painting Mamata Didi’s chubby cheeks.




Heavy haulage

A hungry pullcartman hauled
A heavyset seth from Shyam Bazaar for money
Not enough even for mistidoi .



Violence in love

An old arthritic tram
Molested an artistic spinster bus
Transforming her into a dimpled beauty
.



It soots his lungs

The Shyam Bazaar cop breathes in diesel
As though it were eau-de-cologne
Under his snow-white uniform
His lungs are black as a sooty kitchen wall.









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