wild cooing of doves in distant branches beyond the curtain drawn window in the darkened room where he sits on the edge of the bed frail & thin gently nodding to & fro thinking progress be damned nation states wear hoods ghost riders in the sky stampede the plains & piss in the oceans the salmon from the rivers have gone in what seas will they now spawn & he is down by the riverside down by the riverside where he casts his line into its waters waiting for it to tauten the sudden tug the thrill electric of connection the flick the jerk as a wriggling sparkling life glints in the light sails through space to land at his feet the poetic stance oh not at all damn you all
Drunk I am today,
O’ you little tender world.
With the book of life open before me,
thwarted, blank, I sit here before you all.
Immersed in myself, I am in the Tundikhel,
floating between medieval and modern times.
A peanut seller came with a basket of peanuts
and sat beside me. He gave me, a handful of peanuts
in a colorful piece of paper. I tossed the peanuts
into the air, and started reading the paper instead.
The peanut seller smiled and waved me goodbye,
saying, “You are drunk, very drunk today, my friend!
“In remote western Nepal,
people heard the Beatles
on battery-powered tape decks
before they saw electric lights,
and helicopters fluttered
into their lives
long before the first trucks got there,”
these sentences rose from their slumber
and stirred my heart.
“The first airplane landed in Nepal in 1949
but it was seven years later before
the first highway connected Kathmandu
to the outside world.
Within a year of that first landing,
the Rana autocracy was overthrown
with the aid of an airplane.”
These sentences came out
from the paper, and grappled my throat.
I stood up
but the gravity
of the revelation pulled me down.
I was now drunk, dead drunk
with a million pegs worth of thoughts.
I sat on the grass for a while,
thinking about old Nepal
and my grandfather’s life then.
Then I shifted my thoughts
over to the New Nepal
we claim to be building now.
Where are the roots of the new Nepal
we claim to be building?
Where are the roots?
With a million thoughts
in my head,
I headed to my home
dusting the bare bodies
of the erotic sculptures
on the multi-tiered pagodas
Yes, drunk I am today.
Today I am drunk.
With the book of life open before me,
thwarted, blank, I sit here before you all.
Nepalese poet, Bhuwan Thapaliya works as an economist, and is the author of four poetry collections and currently he is working on his fresh poetry collection, The Marching Millions. Thapaliya’s books include, Safa Tempo: Poems New and Selected (Nirala Publication, New Delhi), Our Nepal, Our Pride , Verses from the Himalayas and Rhythm of the Heart. (Cyberwit.net)Poetry by Thapaliya has been included in The New Pleiades Anthology of Poetry, The Strand Book of International Poets 2010, and Tonight: An Anthology of World Love Poetry, as well as in literary journals such as Urhalpool, MahMag, Kritya, FOLLY, The Vallance Review, Nuvein Magazine, Foundling Review, Poetry Life and Times, Poets Against the War, Voices in Wartime, Taj Mahal Review, VOICES (Education Project), Longfellow Literary Project, Countercurrents etc.
Safa Tempo: Poems New and Selected
Our Nepal, Our Pride
Robin Ouzman Hislop is Editor of Poetry Life and Times at Artvilla.com ; his publications include
All the Babble of the Souk , Cartoon Molecules, Next Arrivals and Moon Selected Audio Textual Poems, collected poems, as well as translation of Guadalupe Grande´s La llave de niebla, as Key of Mist and the recently published Tesserae , a translation of Carmen Crespo´s Teselas.
You may visit Aquillrelle.com/Author Robin Ouzman Hislop about author. See Robin performing his work Performance (University of Leeds)
child eats crying
child cries eating
in animal concert
Lips that you have not used to kiss
little feet you haven’t walked on yet
eyes which see just a foot from your face
hands you still don’t know are yours
crying, hunger and sleep
and some furtive smile
but now comes life
and kisses will come and your steps
and your eyes will see to the end of the horizon
you will know your hands, and how to handle them
but don’t forget, my child,
that crying, hunger, sleep
were your first territory.
niño come llorando
llora comiendo niño
en animal concierto
Labios que no has usado para besar,
pequeños pies con los que no has caminado todavía,
ojos con los que ves a solo un palmo de tu rostro,
manos que aún no sabes que son tuyas;
llanto, y hambre, y sueño,
y alguna sonrisa furtiva;
pero ahora llega la vida,
y los besos vendrán, y tus pasos,
y esos ojos verán al final del horizonte,
y sabrás de tus manos, y sabrás manejarlas,
pero no olvides, mi niño,
que llanto, hambre y sueño
fueron tu primer territorio.
[Scars will come, my son…]
Scars will come, my son
and they will mark your body
but do not let them scare you because they will be
your private dialogue with the world
a way to know you are alive
full of past and full of present.
[Sobrevendrán cicatrices, hijo…]
Sobrevendrán cicatrices, hijo,
y marcarán tu cuerpo,
pero que no te asusten pues serán
tu diálogo privado con el mundo,
una forma de saberte vivo
colmado de pasado y de presente.
[The many things you discover every day…]
The many things you discover every day.
How to lean out with your clean eyes
to this world full of sorrows,
how to lean out and not soil everything
with prejudices, fixations and miseries,
how will we do it without you telling us
which path to take, which way,
without us telling you
“This way yes, this way no, eat slowly,
try not to stain your vest,
shut the door, brush your teeth…”.
[Cuántas cosas descubres cada día…]
Cuántas cosas descubres cada día.
Cómo asomarnos con tus ojos limpios
a este mundo cargado de pesares,
cómo asomarse y no ensuciarlo todo
de prejuicios, esquemas y miserias,
cómo lo haremos sin que tú nos digas
qué vereda tomar, por qué camino,
y no nosotros los que te digamos:
“Por aquí sí, por aquí no, come despacio,
intenta no ensuciar tu camiseta,
cierra la puerta, lávate los dientes…”.
Wake up when
the light lets you
look at your toys
la luz ya te permita
ver tus juguetes.
[In addition to paying our pensions…]
In addition to paying our pensions,
it is expected of you, children,
(at least by poets)
a word that illuminates the world.
Like innocent little prophets
you sleep peacefully
you don’t know yet
our secret assignment.
[Además de pagar nuestras pensiones…]
Además de pagar nuestras pensiones,
de vosotros se espera, hijos,
(al menos los poetas),
una palabra que ilumine el mundo.
Como pequeños profetas inocentes,
no conocéis aún
nuestra secreta encomienda.
[How I wish my errors were of value to you…]
How I wish my errors were of value to you
a sort of hereditary apprenticeship
—I´ve a whole string of these to give you—
but only your own errors
with their taste of blood between the lips
will be of some use to you, if at all;
most will be
irreparable and useless, like
a toy forgotten in an attic.
[Ojalá mis errores os valieran…]
Ojalá mis errores os valieran
como un aprendizaje hereditario
—de eso tengo una ristra para daros—,
pero solo vuestros errores,
con su sabor a sangre entre los labios,
os servirán de algo, si es que os sirven;
la mayoría serán
irreparables e inútiles como
un juguete olvidado en un desván.
Javier Gil Martin (Madrid, 1981). With a degree in Spanish Philology from the UAM, he is professionally dedicated to subtitling and literary proofreading and passionately to reading and editing, mainly poetry. He has coordinated, together with good friends, several literary collections. In 2020 he founded the publishing project “Cartonera del escorpión azul” and since 2006 he coordinates the “Versos para el adiós” section of Adiós Cultural magazine. As an author, he has published Poemas de la bancarrota (Ediciones del 4 de agosto, Logroño, 2015), Poemas de la bancarrota y otros poemas (Espacio Hudson, Argentina, 2018), Museo de la intemperie (Ejemplar Único, Alzira, 2020) y Museo de la intemperie [II] (Cartonera Island, Tenerife, 2022). His “Route Signs” is a section of the latter.
Robin Ouzman Hislop is Editor of Poetry Life and Times at Artvilla.com ; You may visit
Aquillrelle.com/Author Robin Ouzman Hislop about author & https://poetrylifeandtimes.com
See Robin performing his work Performance (University of Leeds)