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A Bloody Life

Like any baby, covered in blood
I came into being
The other end of the umbilical cord
Held my twin.
Too huge to be a new born
I had to be tied
A white cloth wrapped around
For a safe, cozy inside.

When I was three,
All my parents came together
Time to choose a school:
Socialist, Communist or Democratic?
Democratic, they said
And I set my foot in school.
How good or bad?
I don’t have an answer today
And, the Deciders are dead!

When I was young,
I had quarrels with my twin
(Like all you young)
I only wish they were not so bloody
An eye for an eye.
And we both became blind…
Our mothers were dead too early!

At 64, we still quarrel
I wish we had grown up a little!


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The 20 lakh package

In the corner of a room Clustered only with a
rusty stove And an old bed, A tattered book he read to his sister Trying to put her to bed.
The day had been long He had to cook with Baba And clean and dust, The woman of the house Had lads she could trust
At night Baba watched over the neighborhood And him, over their humble abode For his earnest parents This was his gentle ode
Finally came home Mommy Who was playing nanny To another little angel Whose parents took turns too Earning their hefty packages


कविता लिखना किसी इंसान के बस की बात नहीं है
कविता ख़ुद ही अपने आप को लिखती है
इक ज़रिया है बस हम तो
कविता ख़ुद ही ख़ुद को आईना में दिखती है

यह ख़ुद अपनी ज़ुबां चुनती है
लफ्ज़ अपने ख़ुद ही ढूँढ़ती है
कोशिश कर लेना तुम कभी
झूठ लिखते ही ये टूटती है

देर रात यह सपने में आती
मन के दरवाज़े पर दस्तक देती
लिफ़ाफ़े में बंद चिट्ठी में
अपने आप को तुम्हें दे जाती
लिखावट काग़ज़ पर तुम्हारी है बेशक़
पर कलम में सियाही तो वो ही भर जाती

कभी यूँ ही शाम को मिलने आती
खिड़की के पास बैठ चाय की चुस्कियाँ लगाती
रोम रोम में इक महक सी भर जाती है
दिल की धड़कनें कानों तक गूँज जाती है
बाहर की खिड़की खोलते खोलते
यह रूह के दरवाज़े खोल जाती है

एक बार कविता हर किसी को छूने आती है
जब टुटा हो दिल प्यार में, तो यह कुछ ज़्यादा जी लुभाती है
जब हाथ बढ़ाए तुम्हारी ओर, झट से थाम लेना, साहीर
यह बार बार गले नहीं लगती है।

Silly Me!

Be proud
Of what you are Weird, you may be Even funny, so it be But that's what you are!
Be proud Of the whacky gest That makes you YOU Because even under layers of makeup It will still find you.
Be proud Of that habit of yours that bugs others But that defines you as YOU Others' opinion is not your problem Unless you let it confine you.
Be proud Of the stupid poems you write That give you a high Celebrate YOU, for models, Take Luna Lovegood and Rosesh Sarabhai.