The cold thickens the blood near his heart

We break our bangles on the hearthstone

Are you ate done with the world?

Feed all your worldly husbands to the kitchen fire

Says akka Mahadevi…

The great English kitchen, where Sylvia Plath wrote

Is it a kind of performance art?

On a scaffolding

You do it beautifully well

Every time when

It rains in the streets

Like the blood of Hussein

Every time I die a little

When some wise versifier

Snatches your paisley

Takes it for the finest muslin ethereal

And pulls it through a wedding ring

On a scaffolding

In Nasik

The falling nose ring makes a splash

Amidst currency note smells, in the

Gunpowder plot’s soup kitchen

Children, asleep like gods in my arms.

In Indic, Agha means noble, a flaneur

Of meandering tales,

in English it means kitchen stove

Feed your poems to the fire…

Karbala is gone; to be immortal, and to then die…

For I am the only witness to this

Till eternity


Playing woman to my master

When the Covid rains come to Harappa.

(for Suvir Kaul)

Featured image by Steve Johnson on Unsplash.