Category Archives: Poems

My thoughts and reality

A wild thought races across my mind
A cheetah chasing the deer across the flatlands
I wait, close my eyes to focus on the deer
Yet the details escape me – What was I thinking?

They run faraway into the sunlit horizon of my mind
Till all I can see are two hazy forms running.
A little fuzzball, like a bear cub
Waddles over to the forefront of my thoughts.

My attention shifts, I can see better now.
It’s an idea to create, to do something interesting
To create a soft tactile pillow, soft to touch
Fun to play with. I watch the little bear cub.

Ever so slowly as it rambles around the grass
I see it changing shape, slowing down.
A soft brown felt pillow sits on my sofa.

My son hugs it tight
as he watches his favourite cartoon show
On a sultry summer evening.

~ Bharti Athray

A moment in time

A moment in time –
Hangs like a fine needle
On a long white thread.

I watch the needle swing,
Ever so lightly
In the gentle morning breeze.

The silence lulls my senses.

I take in the moment… the cars, the signal,
the honking seems to come
from somewhere far away.

The summer sun beats down
Upon the metal of my car, my heavy eyelids droop…

Suddenly the needle on the white thread
is thrown about.

A wild gust of wind seems to sweep
across my consciousness,

I shake my head, trying to come to grips with where I am.

The loud horns are
close behind me, the signal has turned
Green. I must move.

The single moment in time – it has passed.

~ bharti athray

THE SUSPENSION OF TIME

A moment in time,
Stands still. Like stop motion photography
In an action thriller.
I see it – right there in front of my eyes
That single drop of rain, reflecting the green leaves around.
It hangs in mid-air by a string I cannot see.
My mind, my thoughts are in a limbo
Hypnotised by the rain drop suspended in time.
I dare not breathe. I dare not blink.
I fear I will break the spell. In that single moment
I experience thoughtlessness. Emptiness, that Osho speaks of.
At long last, I breathe out, the spell is broken.
The falling rain continues in straight lines from the sky.
My moment of magic is done.

~ Bharti Athray

The Earth Weeps

The Earth weeps in a distance,
All is silent, she seems asleep.
Not a sound, not a squeak,
Yet know, she weeps.

Like a whale in the deep oceans,
She calls us – her children;
But we hear her not.
Too occupied, too busy, too loud…
Yet, far away, the earth sings.

Then one day, she raises her voice.
A short sharp yelp
From deep within, a pained cry
Of a child seeking attention.

Now we listen, and we weep,
But not for Earth. Now we weep
For our children, our mothers, our fathers
Are hurt.

Yet again, her cries drown away,
In the loud wails
Of those we call family.
Of those whose tears we can see.
While the Earth cries
Deep within, in the faraway seas.

~ Bharti Athray

Nepal Earthquake, 2015

Nepal Earthquake, 2015 | Image source: www.care.org, getty images

Lost … And Found!

He ran to me
Chocolate smeared fingers outstretched
His bright eyes overflowing with tears
I knew this was not the time
To worry about the chocolate stains.
‘Where were you? I was so afraid…
I thought you left me and went away.’

Sticky sweet chocolate
On my whites.
A heart beating wildly
A warm hug, all was well, after all.

~ Bharti Athray

Here, but not quite

teaI wondered where I was meant to be
While I sat here, listening
But heard naught –
The sound just didn’t seem to be reaching in.

I watched the merry go round
Of children, colours, friends
Swirl around me
And knew I was not here.

I sat there
Sipping my cup of Turkish tea
And let the world
Slowly disappear into
A haze of hot steam.

~ Bharti Athray

Image: high tea, by LaNaya Anderson