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Arnab Mukhopadhyay

Arnab Mukhopadhyay

You think it’s tough for you to get hidden child?
well I say you're already hiding behind that one giant wall,
between you and me, and everyone else,
that took you by confidence,
of your well-knit fantasies that grew up in its secluded limitations;
You think you know where you live eh-
in your soft spring bed, with Romantics around?
and while you think of your little lover by that verandah, waiting-
for his moon to shine on him?
do you think it to be the beginning and the end of world,
and its times my child?
did you ever witness the men, trampled down like scapegoats and cattle,
killed in a war or out of a monastery?
did you ever imagine what pain feels like, when a wound opens up,
and pours out the fluid that once sustained the man?
no, you'll never, never understand,
'cause you're still behind that one great wall, hiding, away from them,
You may cry, or wail, or go around cursing your little boyfriend,
but, my dear child, what pain is,
and how it feels like,
you'll never understand,
guarded by a wall, one giant wall, that stands between-
you and me, and them and all.


In the darkness-
Of this sleepless night,
And in the midst
Of a slumbering world-
The sensation as a ghost, haunts me.
I’m alone. All Alone!
The light from the lampshade
Assures me of its psyche,
It stared straight,
Cold and blinded, by the chiffon cover!
I saw my past
In its glowing eyes,
Love and pallor;
Snuffling breath-
And a moaning moon stood, high up in the sky!
With the first step
The second followed,
A dark stage-
With nothing to enact.
A doll, left behind; tied limbs and knotted speech!
In the trance of a mid-aged day
Among the walls that went grey,
Stoned and cold, Ruthless and bold
A new bud blossomed
A new sapling shook its head
The measly life seized a new lead!
The gullible valley went down the stream
And it reflected the lake water touching its brim
By the soft jasmine bed, the sand dweller crept;
Procuring an end to all rich fancies-
A martin bird lay awake stupefied by the last night
As it went wild aligned with the flock, out of its fright!
The Mystery woman comes as a boon
When the moon sailed down the room,
Sparks from the tracks, bullets forcing out of the barracks
Compensated by a hallucinating insurgent, stench
The light bulb stayed awake, till dawn
By the Lady’s favorite fawn!
Meditative tremors slept well and still,
Polished by a man's nefarious grin!
She took her flight to the cherubic stars,
Angels from beneath declared great wars,
A surrealist’s beauty went door to door
Like a pauper with his deprived sore;
Clasped by the tides in the sky,
They proliferate their wings for a fly!

Empty lanes
Crowded with past voices, -
Demands, teases, laughter, and her scorns
Now lay, like some used lady
Some back-door engagements, broken trust;
Melting hues, and her vanilla ice-cream,
Vermillion and pink,
A white bed-sheet turned to a distinguished shade!
Abandoned memories,
Grazed down by the sweeping cowards,
Wet and dry, cars and school buses;
A timid watch, a stranger, stood by the cracked wall,
Dark matter flows down, melted and served warm,
Lanes faced one another, wires, -
Met in a three-pinned socket;
The voices echoed, round and round!


A shameless night, dark; enshrouded-
A naked moon, half covered by clouds;
Cracks and shells, dust and smoke,
A fellow man played a romantic overture, in his stringed instrument, all night;
Whisper and murmur filled the air, confusion breathed its existence.
A mad prophet, bent by his salvation,
A withered figure, stood still,
His silver beard told fables of honor, and duty,
And evoked fake lust for hope, -
Justice and Fate.
His silver locks-
Covered half of his face, blood smeared and wrinkled,
And his sparkling eyes told stories of his youth,
And madness that is now a mere folly to him.
A linnet, dried to hay.
Fields were left with corpses, preyed upon by ants and flies,
A chemical warfare that ended up to be a fatal hot-spot;
And that wriggling crippled Prophet walked,
Passed every twisted-unidentified corpse, with a torch in his hand.
Premature death in the wilderness, and a matured sore before death!
A shameless night, dark; Enshrouded-
A son; Stood in between a father and his love, -
Snatched away the price, ripped off the flesh and the heart
Where the night’s harbingers preyed on the corpse,
And stole the strength to carry his son, to a decent grave!
Odd telephone conversations
And the ringing church bells,
Somber illusions,
Gray fables and tales.
A line of thoughts, past emotions,
Delve deep, senses in a dark attic,
Binary afflictions, linear engagements
Cope up to the high defeat!
Parodies, parasitic culture,
Swift synapses bloom, creeps down the veins;
A room, full of saw dust,
Loose clay and wine gushed,
Mid-aged dreams of lustful romance
Hard on’s and off’s!
The night was musty and gray,
Weed burned, softly, slowly;
A torn rosary, beads here and there,
The crucifix lay, upside down,
Blasphemy to all fears!



Charanjeet Kaur: Editorial

Sara Aboobacker in Conversation with Ayshath S R

Srinivas Reddy: Sanskrit at the Opera

Literary Articles
Kinshuk Majumdar: Amitav Ghosh
Kusumita Datta: Kashmir and its Story Tellers
Rachel Bari: South Asian Poetry
Sonal Jha: Arun Kolatkar

Book Reviews
Dustin Pickering – ‘No Waiting Like Departure’
Gagan Bihari Purohit – ‘For You to Decide’
Purabi Bhattacharya – ‘Himalaya: Adventures, Meditations, Life’
Revathi Raj Iyer – ‘I won’t give you a leg up, Mr Death’
Sapna Dogra – ‘An Ode to Shimla’
Subashish Bhattacharjee – ‘Agniputr: When Agni First Spoke’
U Atreya Sarma – ‘Wakes on the Horizon’

Ambika Ananth – Editorial Note
Arnab Mukhopadhyay
Bidyut Bhusan Jena
Madhab Chandra Jena
Maithreyi Karnoor
Mithlesh Kumar Chaudhary
Robert Beveridge
Sujit Mukherjee
Surbhi Goel
TS Hidalgo
Varun Rajaram

U Atreya Sarma – Editorial Musings
Akshat Joshi – ‘New World’
Ananya Sarkar – ‘The Cats’
Eva Bell – ‘Entrapped’
Humera Ahmed – ‘A Different Sky’
Neera Kashyap – ‘As quiet as a feather falling’
Reema Tripathy – ‘Is Love the Reason?’
Sahar Raza – ‘Sacrifice’
Sukla Singha – ‘Fury’
Sunil Sharma – ‘The Shrinking Man’

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