Umar Nizarudeen


The nectar that you are, bearing the stigma of death,
Disgraced, in the celestial avenues…
How cliched, the incestual Greek myth has become

– ONV, Elegy for Bhumi

Bhumi sent me many things
              Toffee, slate pencil, kittens
So I wired some money
              To her core
Which didn’t reach,
But a tumbler of steel, bobbed
              Up and down
From primordial well
Into that abyss of metal
I paid my alms
Yet, it boiled over
              With milk
And swallowed my money
              The coffee ebbed
A buzz in the spiral cosmos
For a moment
Adrift in the cochlear noise
Your emerald gills
              Molten into asphalt
Splashed across the sky
The blood, of a thousand violations
              I wear in my eyes.

Remember the Termites

December the 6th
Remember the termites
Devouring the foxes alive
They become poetry
Gathering pain for a long time
Biting for eons
Then they realise,
There is poetry in that pain
Thought inflicted
Poesis of the soul
Micro aggression breeds itself
‘you are both micro and soft’
Scabs, sores, termite-bites
Encompass a cosmos
Of hurts-unreal/real
Umwelt und Innenwelt
Are you satisfied?
Shouts the bloody gladiators
Of termite arena
Here today, and
Gone tomorrow

ON Tabassum, My Daughter Stumbling Upon the Word ‘Consummation’ in a Dictionary

Not for her
Ethereal glimpses
                Of roseate morning skies

Not for her
Tridasan vihaya, the
                Crimson trails on the parting of her hair

Not for her
                Dips in the pond

Not for her
The pride of erect breasts
                Kissed by weary garlands of marigold

Not for her
The insolence
                Of tender limbs

Not for her
The tender
                Companionship of the blue god

Not for her
The all-consuming void
                Atop mount Kailasha

Not for her
Whirlings of the Darvish, or
                Perversions of Foucault, Derrida

Not for her
Swan lake on
                Moonlit nights

Not for her
Rose gardens of Shalimar,
                The love of Majnoon

Not for her
The Carrefours
                Of Shahin Bagh and Taksim

Not for her
Secret millennia
                Of Amazonian insurrections

Not for her
Tombs and minarets of
                Marble and clay

Not for her
Gazelle-eyed flights
                Across plastic borders

Not for her
The insouciant grappling
                Of tiger cubs

Not for her
The cosmic dance of
                Black hips

Not for her
The flashing eyes and
                Slipping drapes

Not for her
The luminous bazaars
                Of Scheherazade

Not for her
The jouissance
                Of clickety fingers

Not for her
The frolicsome Eid
                Of a thousand full moons

Not for her
The adolescent devotees
                Of CR7

Not for her
Feigned anger
                Of reunions

Not for her
Dreaming steeples
                Of incunabula

Not for her
The vermillion of freshly
                Wiped tears

Not for her
The pollen grains
                Of Behzad and Hafiz

Not for her
The mystic routes
                Of Baghdad

Not for her
The miracle of

Not for her
The blue mosque
                Or the red one

Not for her
The pools of emerald
                And jasper

Not for her
Stolen kisses
                On the corniche

Not for her
Simmering anger
                Of the dark-eyed goddesses

Not for her
The raging pyres
                Of sacrificial suicide

For Her,
Consummatum est.

UMAR NIZARUDEEN is with the University of Calicut, India. He has a PhD in Bhakti Studies from the Centre for English Studies in JNU, New Delhi. His poems and articles have been published in Vayavya, Muse India, Culture Cafe Journal of the British Library, The Hindu, The New Indian Express, The Bombay Review, The Madras Courier, FemAsia, Sabrang India, India Gazette London, Ibex Press Year’s Best Selection, and also broadcast by the All India Radio.

SUDESHNA CHATTERJEE KUMAR, the illustrator, currently a Doctoral Candidate in the Department of Architecture and Regional Planning in IIT Kharagpur, identifies as an abstract expressionist and an architect and urban planner as well as a sustainability scientist in the making. For Sudeshna, the essence of her art lies in the expression of interactions and the emotions they evoke using different depiction techniques.

1 thought on “Three Poems

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *