Whisper tales

Golkunda Fort - 2
“Immortal thy soul, soldier“,
They sang and marched
I was found
Naked, crying, famished
Near a trench
– and pool of blood,
I thought was colors

Before I realized, at 5
Was carrying coded messages
From one rebel camp
To the other
Folded paper, rolled in
cigarettes – then mixed
with a fresh batch
Did that for years
Till made to stand in a queue
In front of a rifle

First killed at 12
The man was raping
His daughter,
The blue eyed one
I liked,
Was almost stoned
To a glorious

Trained in guerrilla warfare,
hand to hand combat
At 15,
learned how to stab
..and how long
to rotate the knife
till his guts came out,
Don’t remember
If I was blown by a canon
Or, just lamely hanged
With others

I fought in uniform,
Or without,
Brought home in a flag
or not,
Yet always died
Amid gun shots,
Smell of gunpowder
Put me to sleep

In Poland, Srilanka,
Cuba, Afghanistan
Bangladesh Or Myanmar
You won’t

In the grave;

The river my ashes were thrown;
The forest I rotted with fallen leaves;
The chamber I was buried half-alive

Nevertheless, you may find me below the guillotine blade, whistling
“Immortal thy soul, soldier
Age doesn’t weary us
Or, years condemn.”

Gabriella has us write war poetry on Dversepoets, poetics. Join us to read some wonderful poetry across the globe. Doors open 3 PM EST, this Tuesday.
Photo: Army barrack, Golkunda fort, Hyderabad that survived a history of nearly thousand years and still going strong.

About poetry

There are many poets, wannabe poets and would be wannabe poets who are going to be bitten by the poetry bug, but the question remains do they know the root of the word? How are these for facts:

    1. First used in late 14th centuryOpinion – 1 : Old French poetrie or Opinion – 2 : Medieval Latin poetria [In classical Latin, poetria meant “poetess.”] Option – 3:┬áLatin poeta ‘poet’
    2. Figurative use from 1660s
    3. The most impressive quote on poetry that I’ve come across:

      … I decided not to tell lies in verse. Not to feign any emotion that I did not feel; not to pretend to believe in optimism or pessimism, or unreversible progress; not to say anything because it was popular, or generally accepted, or fashionable in intellectual circles, unless I myself believed it; and not to believe easily

[Robinson Jeffers (1887-1962), forward to “Selected Poems”]

Modern poets love a lot of mystery. Would they accept it without arguments?


Living the legacy – 1

I’ve always felt that I’m indebted to my birth place, Shyamnagar, a small township in the suburbs of Kolkata, where I grew up past my adolescence and always wanted to do some remarkable in my own ways to pay homage. Though I was struggling for ideas for a long time, now, largely inspired by the views of my uncle, I’ve decided to put up a new website with the information about the place – predominantly its history and people, the legendary personalities whose presence glorified the name of this town. At the advent of technology, we are doing very little to use the tools to preserve what we can before we lost it for ever. 
My first step towards fulfilling this objective was to get some photographs and news  from personal albums of the family of Ashoklal Banerjee, popularly known as Tineda, about whom we could not find a single image online. He was a part of the golden era of Bengal’s football in 70s, played throughout for East Bengal and was recently awarded East Bengal Ratna award, for being part of the legacy that this club won the league for 6 years in a row (1971-1976). People who knew him said that even after a full match, he never perspired. Fan attributed the name ‘Headmaster’, for his never missing head shots. He is not among us today, but we remember him fondly.
The dogmas of the quiet past may be inadequate to the stormy present and though this place may be insignificantly small in the geographic as well as the economic map of West Bengal, but still in time to come, new generations need to know the history and be inspired from.