Table of Contents
  About the Poetess
  My Father's Country
  Azadi: 1989-1995
  The Yellow River
  Summer Rain
  Mother's Day USA
  Bride in Red
  My Dream
  The City of Dread
  Kashmir Today
  Sukeshi has a Dream
  Autumn Rain
  The Story of Ganesha
  Washer Woman
  The Ever New Poet
  The Yogi
  The Rishi
  My Death
  Self Spectre
  Autumn Song
  Book in pdf format

Koshur Music

An Introduction to Spoken Kashmiri



My Death

It is Thursday
afternoon, spring trees
are trying to tell
me something. What is it?

Time is a trickster,
dressed in rags:
blue, orange, sea green.

Oily dust polishes
what might have been
pockets; they are empty.

A dead river is still 
a river. Do you remember
how we walked all around it?

In circles, straight lines,
not having to wet our feet
at the crossings.

The moon is my mother.
She makes greening buds
look like flowers.

My life will endure,
live in time again
its oceanic solitudes,
black stone silences.

And the terror that lurks
so close; cuts through
the blinds like a vampire,

bandaged all over, masked,
lies beside me. I wakes me
when night winds bend

with an implacable force
necks, arms, wrists
of trees, making them squirm.

In death, and rebirth,
I shall become the earth,
air, water, fire, ether
and sound again.

There will
be no skin peeling
from my bones, no worms
feeding upon me.

Not a relic, no remembrance
or earthly love
shall linger anywhere near me.

Let no one say, "she has
become a restless ghost."
When all her work is done,
let her become the light

that falls between
two tendrils
of flowers, shapely
hollows between foliage.

She shall be the fragrance
of a lilac when
its petals are parted
by the night wind.

Soft tread of a footstep
falling like moonlight
into bitter, feverish dreams
of the newly bereaved.

She shall be the sleep
that makes him
beautiful like a Hindu god. 

[© Lalita Pandit, June 11, 1998].



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