Own/Belonging



At the fourth cross, holding the kerb
Search for a sign, any, easy to please,
An elf in a waiting car window looks at me
And keeps looking, and I keep looking.

A film, a memory, a number, no background.
On the public address system, mother says,
If you see anybody loitering around suspiciously
Please report it to the nearest police station.

Lights change, making life simpler to see.
The car moves on, the brat still looks at me.
The questions, the fears, the world, shiny reflections.
I am wanted! I am wanted! I am wanted!

Hyderabad, February 2013

20 comments:

  1. Liked the last para :)

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    1. Thanks, Divenita! Your encouragement has a lot to do with my putting poetry out on this blog!

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  2. Good to see poetry on this blog, with poetry I can connect to.

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    1. Thanks, mate. I was extremely nervous when I put in the page description, whether people will be able to connect. Your comment is, as always, a huge reassurance.

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  3. hahahaaa now you're trapped Subhorup... and I really slapped myself to have missed your name in that list... check it again @ http://just4suzan.blogspot.com/2013/03/liebster-award-youre-blogging-pretty.html and play your part ;)
    btw, goto orkut(dot)com to see what was orkut to veteran citizens like us :-/

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    1. Anunoy, thank you so much for this honor. It is rare that one comes across a blog with the maturity that one finds on your travel writing and photography, and it is truly great good fortune that you thought me worthy of this award.

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  4. Wow.. A poem! :) There is something about the last paragraph.. I have read it more than thrice now.. Keep writing! :)

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  5. awesome poem .. loved the last para!

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  6. Ok I read this poem twice and today again..because I did not grasp it. What was it in the gaze that gave the last line the double entendre? I am wanted as in wanted/loved/cared and wanted as in criminal? And then why the use of the metaphor of looking and anchoring in that look.
    I finally came to settle it in my mind today when I remember Levinas and his concept of Otro, the Other and the face of the Other--how the presence of the Other draws us into consciousness of the being--that we are not constituted by our self but by the other.
    And then I returned to this poem--the elf looking, the other looking, you anchored on that face, drawing, reconstituting yourself. And then the parody of the times, when the other has trace of yet another--mother's voice, the loudspeaker, the tension in the air--how that then defines the face that you watch and also constitutes you.
    And then I realized the utter beauty of this poem. I dont have a hat, so no hats off. But from behind this laptop, a bow to the growing master.

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    1. Bhavana, you have not only grasp the essence of what I experienced before and during the writing of this poem, but you have also added perspectives that enrich it. The best of writing is that which keeps scholars puzzling for decades about the things that you might have possibly meant. The tragedy of contemporaneity is the very premise of abandonment of antiquity and the abrogation of personal responsibility for consequence. This is reinforced at every turn - we want simple and trendy, we find things boring and old fashioned, and we consider a value-driven life a waste. I have no hat either. So, like you, I pray. And then I write. All that I can write about is about what I see reflected back by my being. Thanks for reading with so much love.

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  7. I love the fact that this poem is open to many interpretation. When I was thinking it's about two people, it turned otherwise. Quite Unique!

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  8. I've read this three time, Subho and each time it speaks something else to me - layers and layers of meaning......shades of Gieve Patel in the style. Love it.

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