My tongue is my mother’s tongue. My language is as sharp and thick as hers. I borrow her words, heat them up in the furnace of my mouth and turn them into heart-shaped shards of glass. My heart is my mother’s heart. I collect raindrops in buckets and tears from peeling onion skins in my […]
Sing, rhapsode, the poetry of ages, Where Homer stitched his verse to please Apollo, And Aphrodite heard the island harp and lines of lyric Sappho as she strummed. From southern undeciphered ancient Cretan And syllabic pictographic Linear B, To towering Attic temples and the harbours That launched a thousand ships for Helen’s face. The wars […]
I remember her voice, soft as water, Precipitating down on coddled heaps, And armfuls of shawl, Permeating skin and blood and bone Where something still resonates within. There was music in her words, For they danced in jigs and reels On an English tongue that could recall Just enough to say her prayers. The stress […]
Born of Love This base-born son Where dead men breathe And ears receive the Ghost of a mouth Still spoken Lineage unbroken What empire stands for a thousand years Yet bated breath still holds Rain our words as, Springs run to streams and Streams run to rivers. Tributaries of generations, Where mountains stand unbroken, Impassable monuments […]
My language has no birth certificate – a surprise for the history books. It was judged, classed as mime, ridiculed, a naughty child told to stop. My language is no pantomime – but a folk story, a recipe of generations. My language is silent, powerful a swan before attack.
Ek Pakistani, Aur ek Hindustani, Maybe to say, They were friends, Was gunah. Yet both, The Pakistani, And Hindustani, Flags raised together, Silenced the crowd.