Tuesday 1 September 2015

Poetry 2015, FirstPrize Salil Chaturvedi

The Way of Rain

A mother calls from a thousand miles
and tries to swallow her daughter whole through the earpiece of a phone.
Amidst the cacophony of frogs, her silence is borrowed
from the trees, as are the mauve flowers
that sprout regularly in her hair.

I have never seen moss growing on words.
Dead branches, too, are alive in this rain.
For three months the forest comes up all around you
  and then it disappears under your
   feet again. This is a good time to plant the Moringa: a woman’s best friend.
You dig a hole, put a branch in and let the darkness take over.

Trees may lie on the other side of language, but
there is nothing wrong in standing in the rain
and reciting a poem to a tree.

Childhood memories fall on your skin as silver drops
and in a short time you are completely soaked.
Ripples intersect each other all afternoon.
At night the rain falls at a slant
dragging you slowly to the memory of your first kiss
while the leaves nod knowingly outside the window. It’s slippery everywhere.
The world has turned into a mirror: 
Anywhere  I look I find myself thrown back at me.
There must be a way to talk to everything with faint outlines.
 Some things survive only in the rain.

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