Two Poems by Basudhara Roy

Two Poems by Basudhara Roy

Learning

I make a note to tell you
how my sky is, today, loud with light
so that no matter which way you look
there is no escaping its glare,
its arched eyebrows like a patriarch’s
awakened to the doubt
that he is not god.

The sun’s sheer wealth is out on display,
its tresses in their complacency,
falling wild upon my prayers
and I am drenched in more gold
than I can ever hope to hold and keep.
Be fair, I am told.
There’s no running away from the dance.

The seasons follow each other
in close succession
and every colour will ask for its song.
What if I don’t sing, I want to ask.
Over my head, a cluster of falling tamarind leaves
pirouette gleefully in the breeze,
learning to dance

and the bougainvillea across the road blushes
even as its blossoms kiss the grass.
Sound melts into forgetting.
Loss heals into memory.
Every song has an end and a successor.
No two songs are the same.
No two moments either.

I relearn under this determined sun
that the opposite of light isn’t always dark.
In some seasons, it is shade.
In much the same way,
the opposite of more is hardlyless
but sometimes,
only enough.

Leaving Behind

You will never know what you left behind
or realize
that a person too can be a nest.
Quite a mess
when you look at it from above,
but on closer gaze, a home waiting to be inhabited,
its ears fixed on the heart throbbing inside an egg.

It’s always good to leave,
to find ways like lore and walk
till every query is quenched.
But it’s quite tragic to not know what you leave behind,
your ignorance fluttering like a befuddled ghost
on the wrist of some wind
long after you have gone.

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