April 5, 2016

Three Poems by Suvojit Banerjee: "Letters and Postcards from the other side of the glass wall", "While we died, a new plant was born", "A tale of past and present and future"

Suvojit Banerjee has seen twenty eight summers, but he doesnt remember all of them; his existence is torn between the suburbs in West Bengal he grew up in, and the city called Atlanta he now lives in. The world around him adorns many masks, and so does he, while roaming around its streets with the eyes as a journal and his soul as a pen. He is searching for answers in this surreal yet slimy maze, but the questions keep on changing every time.

His poems and prose have been previously published in Silver Birch Press, and also featured in places like eFiction India, Kind of a Hurricane Press, The Camel Saloon, The Word Couch, HackWriters, Voices de la Luna, Tuck Magazine, UUT Poetry and The Stray Branch Literary Magazine. His poems have also been featured in the book 'A Significant Anthology', which covers 175 writers from all over the globe.
He observes, sometimes giving up consciousness in return. It is a dangerous thing, this silent stalking of nostalgia, but he has a maddening urge. He has to follow the trail.



Letters and Postcards from the other side of the glass wall

I am writing this letter to you from Laos.
Where children wake up and
go to work in minefields. They have
napalm in their eyes.
A generation or two got lost in the wilderness,
in the vastness of Mekong they perished.
History books told that they went to war.
Was I
talking to you about Laos?
I think I meant Saigon; I saw war elephants there.
I could have told you
about the postcard from
Azerbaijan, where deserts nurtured lost skeletons and sometimes
showed them to you in moonlight.
Or in Bāmyān, where
I was counting stones that told of
a monk and his voyage stones that
smelled like grenades and rocket launchers.
I was just sleeping, and sleeptalking in a
straightjacket. You were looking at me from
the other side of a glass wall.
I was telling you about a world in pain.
But you thought otherwise,
didn't you?



While we died, a new plant was born

The afternoon, shy like a dove, spoke
to me in little coos. I was busy
cutting my wrist, but I listened for a while.
I was trying this new thing in vogue
called rebirth. People were changing masks
and I was changing the body, the
soul, altogether.
Outside, the city was a pretty little cocoon
like all pretty little cocoons, except
cocoons weren't pretty
at all. Old buildings bared their ribs
and smiled with their yellow teeth.
People were changing masks
and dying on the streets. A lonely
violin cried foul, but then saw a balloon
and got lost.
I was sitting at my balcony, and trying to find
the vein. The moist noise of a ship
carried by the wind that made the bonsai tree-leaves
undulate, and tell me
green was still a banned word.
The night a city died, a thousand plants were
dancing somewhere, poking their little heads.
Only we couldn't see them
breathe.

A tale of past and present and future

No longer tied to one another, we
ebb and flow and flutter like silver sand
on a windy beach; at the mountains
your wishes for me roll like chakras
whispering ghosts our
stories.
Your peach lips are Orwellian.
Your bright eyes have
an Ordovician pride in them; Im but a
mammal trying to change to a whale.
But I drowned.
On days that are as bright as fire, I saw
you sacrifice everything for the seahouse
we built. Years later, between the
auburn salwar kameez and the
curry colored saree, you
brought in my destruction
on a plate, with the élan of a
would be bride.
I drank the poison.
Eons in future,
mankind but a forgotten memory,
only those sand crystals remain, with my blood coloring one purplish black.
Have you found your salvation yet?

~Suvojit Banerjee

3 comments:

  1. A harsh truth found in many parts of the Globe today.

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  2. Beautiful poems...Was in Vientiane in December of 2009, when she called, crying on her (our) miscarriage...

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  3. I think this is the first time I have seen Ordovician used in a poem. As a geologist I appreciate that detail. Beautiful writing.

    ReplyDelete

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