POEM: Floating Feather

A downy, white feather twists languidly, drifting downward.

I spot it as I stand on my balcony.
I’m transfixed,
compelled to follow the feather to its final resting place,
be it inside or outside the rail.

I’m transfixed because it moves impossibly slowly;
gravity’s hold on it is tenuous,
a puppy’s breath could put it on another course —
changing its fate.

And in those moments of lazy falling,
I, too, feel fateless.

POEM: Dancing Shadows

I found a world in an old book
so darkly like my own.
But built on sands I’d never seen,
their marbled grains were blown
across the land and through the door
to an abandoned house
where lived not one single soul —
nor dog, nor cat, nor mouse.

Just a flock of lively shadows
that danced on floor and wall,
in a dread silent cotillion —
a shadow monster’s ball.
And though I was not invited,
my shade was welcomed in.
I was, to my own shadow, a
second-rate citizen.

But I am just a cruel slaver;
for when it’d broken free,
my shadow moved with such swift grace
as in ‘t I’d never seen.
And standing like a stone statue,
I watched these twirling forms,
and wondered whether they’d blown in
upon the desert storms?

POEM: Last Sunflower Standing

I saw a field — once sunflowers —

now reaped at harvest time.

Just stiffened stalks and wrinkled leaves,

and one head past its prime.

Those glorious yellow petals,

drooping — facing the ground,

were the only way I knew the

crop that’d been mowed down.

How sad to be a survivor

who lives by a bowed head

once the ones that faced the sun

have joined the newly dead.

Five Hampi Haiku

I
flat waters
glide wide at the bend,
their might mute


II
boulders stacked
in precarious piles —
yet they stand


III
the palm trees
stand over stone ruins —
upright sentries


IV
a leaning tree
reaches its gnarled, bent trunk
to shade pilgrims


V
strange landscape —
rubble swept into piles
by what hand?