Tuesday, July 10, 2018



Nothing Left To Lose

My unnamed sisters who
Are compelled to woo
Buyers of their ravaged flesh,
Live in a prison confined
Within a rough wire mesh,
Like hyperactive hares
That want to escape
And get bloodied
In their foolhardy attempts.
They live in Red Light areas,
They walk the streets,
In short skirts and
Revealing blouses
Showing their assets.
They strike a pose,
Sensuous to a fault.
Their smiles are frozen
On their pale mascara
And cheap red gash of
Their vacuous mouths.
Rain or shine,
They walk the streets.
On freezing nights,
When homely lights
Are extinguished,
They wait in
Dark doorways
Lurk in deserted parks.
They wait for
A few quick bucks
To feed their babies.
There are pimps, the heavies,
Who never let them be.
They are not entitled
To the usual privacy
That we demand as a right!
Oh, what a heartbreaking sight
These young and old women--
Some little more than children--
Who want out, but
Are caught in a painful rictus
Of a meaningless life that is
Worse than death.

Once I overheard one:
"They picked us
For an hour of fun;
And they pulled a gun!"
The same one was gone.
She was never found again.
Thousands of them,
Of ill repute, none wearing Jimmy Choos,
Keep walking till they drop;
Or if chosen, they do have to hop
For performing unspeakable acts.
These are the bare facts.
For a miserable pair of shoes,
They put themselves up for display:
They have no notion of fair play.
Horrors of nights pile up--who rues?
These loose women have
Nothing, really nothing, left to lose.


This life is an abandoned house.
When the foundation was laid,
There was no particular joy in it.
The logs of wood and the bricks
Were used for building a makeshift
dwelling with a slate roof to stop rain.

In the ensuing years, some hours,
Long hours, passed in happiness.
Some hours passed at a pensive pace;
As usual all over the primeval world.
Years have gone, blended into the past.
Shot with light rays and shadows, dappled,
flaring up often, meant to last
A lifetime of dreams and unreal cast.

The house is now bereft of throbbing life.
In each room and on the stairs silence is rife.
Crumpled curtains cover some windows;
Some stare darkly into the trees opposite.
The chimney no longer smokes, and
The wooden door has developed a creak.
This house stands alone, abandoned,
Near a slow flowing creek.

In the night, when there is the full moon
Casting its yellow glow over the woods,
The house smiles a bleak smile, in one of its blue moods.

A moonstruck house, all alone
Under the night sky, not yet dead and gone,
Has poetry in every nook and room.
Step in gingerly--floor boards creak,
If you step on them too hard and in haste.

Tigress--Bride Of The Forest

Bride of the forest;
Amber eyes a little lazy
With her overwhelming
Lust for love and life;
Ears alert though,
For the dreadful
Steps of human hunters;
Her newly awakened
With the trees
The clumps of grass
The pools of clear water
The sun-drenched soil
Makes her head buzz
With high pleasure;
The young tigress
Reclines in a recess
In the forest,
Inviting the druids
To embrace her with love.
The lithe, bronze body
Striped in gorgeous black,
Is offered to the forest
With a promise of faithfulness.
The tigress burning bright
As a new flame of the forest.


A man, hidden for long, was born in my brain.
It was dusk, and there was a slow train
Of thoughts, steaming, chugging away in there.
There were tiny electrons in the neurons,
That sparked by, tiny but illuminated stations.
The unnamed train swayed and rocked;
I was almost lulled, as sleep gently knocked
At my eyelids that were growing heavy.

...And then, my brain had a small explosion.
A bright headlight seemed to be turned on.
My cranium opened wide at the top;
Sparrows, pigeons and ravens flew out
Of the lighted cavern inside my head.
Then, all on a sudden, something burst:
Amniotic fluid, in phosphorescent waves.
A man floating in it flew up in the sky;
His wet wings he flapped madly, to fly.

My thought train came to halt at last.
An old tragedy flashed from the past.
The man was born, and was gone;
And my interiors became much LUCID, just
As my head closed up and I made it fast.

Waking The Soul

It is like raindrops--peace that drops from
The sky where a lovely dawn breaks!
The East blushes reddish orange--
Colours of the day awakening
And diffusing all over, hiding the
Stars of the glamorous night gathering.
The crescent moon hangs like a last
Piece of decoration from the feast
Of yesterday's celestial banquet--
A fading smile from the face of the sky,
Beautiful and elusive, a reminder of
The coming dusk that will brush away
The noisy, pragmatic, over-bright day.
The faded stars and the fading moon
Hold the promise that soothing night
Is just lurking around the corner, not far.
On the silhouette of the mauve hilltop
Stands alone a tree, its olive green foliage
Against the slow-brightening sky lifting
The night curtain, setting another day scene.
The solitary figure beside the tree on the hill
Looks calm and quiet,
perhaps looking for a few moments
of being alone with his own soul
seeking solace at dawn!

Landscape Of My Mind

The sun breaks through
A bank of dense dark clouds
In a surreal landscape.
Some parts of the sun
Melt and become a veneer
On little pools and the ice.
A boat, frozen into stillness,
Is sun-kissed, glowing orange.
This landscape makes me
Hold my breath in suspense.
The black clouds in my mind
Are swirling slowly about,
Reaching the deepest core.
The air in my mind is still,
Waiting for a break-through,
Or for an electric storm
Of apocalyptic magnitude.
The storm that will storm
My mind, devastate my shore,
Is brewing somewhere unknown.


SHARMILA MITRA, aka Sharmila Pupu Mitra, is an English teacher who fills her solitary moments with creative writing, mostly poetry. She believes in honest struggle, and helping  destitute animals as much as possible. She lives with her elderly and ailing mother and seventeen rescued dogs and cats. She has to her credit a medal from Sampad South Asian Arts, UK, for an outstanding contribution to their publication: 'My Museum.' She has a collection of poems, Makeshift Melodies,' which she has self-published. She has of late started writing short stories. Her poems have been published in an anthology: 'Spilling Essences.' Life in its multiple colours emerges from her writing.

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