Khalish- A Yearning


Huzaifa Pandit

At our last meeting
I felt a strange sensation:
Were you altered
in appearance?
Or was it just another
foolish fantasy
Of mine?
Did your inattentive glance
betray that I
had been replaced
in your attentions?
Or was it just
shy hesitancy?
Have I been evicted
from your house?
Are the doors no longer
open to me?
What do I care for your
‘exalted standing’
in society?
What shall I do
with meaningless totems
of your prosperity?
Much good they may do to you.

Your reluctant greeting
like an intrusive speech
reserved for unwelcome
You sat beside me-
Your posture reeked
of stiff formality
and none of that old intimacy.
Then you raked up
the weather
to strike up a conversation.
Suddenly you turned
to the political scanerio –
your interpretations
and predictions
of how things shall come to be.
Literature made a dramatic appearance
As you plunged into
a long monologue
on contemporary poetics,
literary issues
and literary history

But not even once
did you bother to inquire:
Love, How have you been?
How has life
been treating you?
Not once did you design to ask:
Has time been hanging heavy
Upon you?
Does the day seem
to be unending
or are the dreamless
nights unrelenting?
How do you scale
the steep mountain of existence?
You never asked:
Love, has life stopped
driving you out
into the deep rough sea
In tempests of soft agony?
Did you survive the storm
Or were you shipwrecked
off the coast of nightmares
in the dark night?

You complain:
The nights pass slowly
without any loved one
for company.
If only you had spoken
of the solitary nights
spent in separation
or the joy of union.
Platitudes would have comforted me
if only you had bothered
to speak to me.

(Writer is pursuing Masters in English Literature from Pune University.)  



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