Siddheshwar Singh

Capitol Cinema
.
This is the name of a set of memories
Which remains hovering over the seam of the past and the present
Time, racing on fast pace
Hasn't been able to cloud its spelling
Its existence can still be deciphered clearly

Immersed in making this world beautiful
There used to a another world etched on the silver screen
An ointment
Applied quietly on the scratches of daily routine
Sting of an arrow half through the heart
Aur drop by drop, love dripped over the rock of time
Entrenched in this moistness, a generation, ours, grew up

Heard it has reopened its doors
Has filled yet again by hustle bustle post a long exile
Heard it flaunts a swanky new look
Heard it is all squeaky new in there
Heard, leaving antiquity behind
Capitol has entered a new age
Really, all changes one day
And this was just a building, a picture hall
Where we watched timeless sagas, numerous

Tourists never cease to arrive
The mast-boats still converse with the winds
While mountains gaze in indulgence
However, the dailies carry
News of the drying up water level of the lake
Geologists make fearful prophecies
I indulge in this world's gaiety
I indulge in this world's gaiety
Still, Nainital descends in my dreams, again and again
And that Captiol too
Which never was, never will be, just a cinema hall.
*

Time of poet

Timid is this morning
Day remains hesitant and doubtridden
Evening always sad
Night is smoke black
And constantly immersed in games of cruelties

Has the Earth changed its gait
Have the paths of the planets
Missed their gravity
Have the seasons forgotten their cycle
Or some such incident has taken place
Which had to happen beyond and away from the clutches of language

This is just a time
Rotating on its exis
Expiring
Spending us all
If you look hard enough
Objects dominate over thoughts
Aur the sole meaning of our existence is just the market

A poet
Wanders insane
Asking questions from himself
Drowning deep in the heap of answers
Embarrassed of the flags, fluttering in the wind
Remembering the acquired virtues of his ancestors
And chiselling the rock of time
With the continuous drawfed heights of body of beings
Inspite of all this
Poetry still upholds remaining graciousness
Which keeps head high
Which keeps the backbone straight
Which keeps the eyes still moist
Which supports by its hope
A hand eagerly searches for and holds another hand

It is such a great relief, that still
Done crazy people haven't forgotten how to write poetry.
*

Sleep
.
Nothing can be said about sleep, while asleep
Rearrangement of sleep is essential
For anything to be said about sleep

What can be said about sleep
One can talk about the importance of sleep, I believe
It can be said in language of maxims
That awakening is quite essential for the existence of sleep
One can try
That all may achieve enough sleep
At least enough to make a day out of a day
And a night out of a night
Leaving out all inscrutable words
And differentiate between light and darkness

This continuously deepening night, heavy with darkness
The moon is still awake as a hope of brighter days
While dew keeps the Earth's body moist and wet
It still believes in the germination of warmth of the sun
While cruel seasons doze away
There is still something that needs to be changed
In spite of a continuous string of yawns

Come, sit near me for a while
Come let us chat a bit
Hold my hand properly
Maybe this ritual of faith would bring you some sleep
It is good enough that the world is in slumber right now
But look! Carrying some obsession in this minds
A few restless descendants of Kabir lay still awake.
*

Grievances

The spectacles nurse a grievance
No poem was written on them ever
Where it is only due to them I still have a clear vision
And some etiquette too
To be able to feel the difference between the pact of light and darkness

The shoes too lay sulking in a corner
As if they wish to imprint the obligation
Of never letting my gait be effected
Each step taken was firmly set
Which often was mistaken for arrogance
But it never evoked
Not even a single meaningful poetic line ever
All in the glory of the ancient protectors of the feet

The mirror complains
That I appear in it all dressed up
Rub my face with various ointments
Colour my hair with various dyes
It hesitates in blurting out the truth each time
Each time a poem stays unexpressed

The books are sick of overflowing knowledge
Words, sentences and paragraphs grow restless
They complain that whatever is said
Is never conveyed as it should
Not even for the sake of rhyming
No one ever enquires about the times and the era

The list of complaints gets longer
Wise put their bets on the game of language
While the encyclopedia stays intoxicated in irrelevance
Day by Day the lane of poems gets narrower
And I have no problem
No grievance from my poet
Who is hell bent on heaping poems
Almost everyday
*
---
( Translated by Aparna Anekvarna)
 


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