7 Indian Poems you Must Read

Cognitive carnal cravings of today satiated by poetry injecting its colourful relaxant. DESIblitz presents 7 must read poems by Indian poets.

7 Indian Poems you Must Read

Lusting after magical words has been quite the obsession for poets and readers

Both classical and contemporary poets use their words to paint vivid portraits of emotion in our minds.

These writers explore depths of feeling relevant and poignant in British Asian society.

Lusting after magical words has been quite the obsession for poets and readers alike. These poems sensually, skillfully and seductively arouse the passions and thoughts of a true appreciator.

These poets have delicately displayed an array of genuine heartfelt emotions for the insatiable search of meaningful awakening.

Adorned with a garland intrinsically sewn across Indian history. From ploughed farmlands of the earth to the seas of the loins, the animalistic urges are hunted out into the open for us the readers to revel in.

What he said (gently moving bamboo) ~ 3rd c. Oreruravanar

(Translated by A.K. Ramanujan)

Her arms have the beauty
of a gently moving bamboo.
Her eyes are full of peace.
She is far away,
her place not easy to reach.

My heart is frantic
with haste,
a ploughman with a single ox
on land all wet
and ready for seed.

This encompasses the sheer magnitude of desire and the urgency in which the ploughman wants to satisfy his longing for her.

The reader is drawn in by the gentle calming qualities likened to swaying bamboo, contrasted by the ploughing of the wet heavy soil.


Lover’s Gifts V: I Would Ask For Still More ~ 1861-1941 Rabindranath Tagore

I would ask for still more, if I had the sky with all its stars,
and the world with its endless riches; but I would be content with
the smallest corner of this earth if only she were mine

The desires of the heart far exceed the needs of the world.

Materialistic gain over the emotional satisfaction of love is immeasurable. The words send a chilling reminder of human yearning.

Description ~ 1924-2004 Nissim Ezekiel

I will begin – but how should I begin? –
with hair, your hair,
remembered hair,
touched, smelt, lying silent there
upon your head, beneath your arms,
and then between your thighs a wonder
of hair, secret
in light and in darkness
bare, suffering with joy
kisses light as air.

And I will close – but is this fair? –
with dawn and you
binding up your hair.

The aftertaste of experience lingers in the thoughts. Bewilderment of its finality brings forward both sadness and lust for more.

Wild temptations to ravage are dangled. Ezekiel escorts the reader to a room they do not wish to leave.


Tale of Fire ~ 1919-2005 Amrita Pritam

(Translated by Amrita Pritam and Arlene Zide)

This is the tale of fire
— the tale you told me.
My life was like a cigarette
and it was I you lit.

Look at this account from Time’s pen –
it’s been fourteen minutes
it’s been fourteen years.

In this my body, your breath moved.
The soil bore witness to the rising coils of smoke.

Life, like a cigarette has burned down
the fragrance of my love –
one part mingled in your breath,
the other drifts away into the air …

See, this is the last butt.
So the fire of my love may not scorch them,
let it drop from your fingertips.

Forget about my life
just be wary of that fire.
Save your hand,

Light a new cigarette.

Full of passion and anger the reminiscing of a past relationship can be visualised with such ease as you douse that cigarette butt.

The Stone Age ~ 1934- 2009 Kamala Das

Fond husband, ancient settler in the mind,
Old fat spider, weaving webs of bewilderment,
Be kind. You turn me into a bird of stone, a granite
Dove, you build round me a shabby room,
And stroke my pitted face absent-mindedly while
You read. With loud talk you bruise my pre-morning sleep,
You stick a finger into my dreaming eye. And
Yet, on daydreams, strong men cast their shadows, they sink
Like white suns in the swell of my Dravidian blood,
Secretly flow the drains beneath sacred cities.
When you leave, I drive my blue battered car
Along the bluer sea. I run up the forty
Noisy steps to knock at another’s door.
Though peep-holes, the neighbours watch,
they watch me come
And go like rain. Ask me, everybody, ask me
What he sees in me, ask me why he is called a lion,
A libertine, ask me why his hand sways like a hooded snake
Before it clasps my pubis. Ask me why like
A great tree, felled, he slumps against my breasts,
And sleeps. Ask me why life is short and love is
Shorter still, ask me what is bliss and what its price…

Despite the passing of time from when this poem was written, the failure of relationships and the manner in which people strive to fulfil their desires is commonplace today.


White Asparagus ~ b. 1956 Sujata Bhatt

Who speaks of strong currents
streaming through the legs, the breasts
of a pregnant woman
in her fourth month?

She’s young, this is her first time,
she’s slim and the nausea has gone.
Her belly’s just starting to get rounder
her breasts itch all day,

and she’s surprised that what she wants
is him
inside her again
Oh come like a horse, she wants to say,
move like a dog, a wolf,
become a suckling lion-cub –

Come here, and here, and here –
but swim fast and don’t stop.

Who speaks of the green coconut uterus
the muscles sliding, a deeper undertow
and the green coconut milk that seals
her well, yet flows so she is wet
from his softest touch?

Who understands the logic
behind this desire?
Who speaks of the rushing tide
that awakens
her slowly increasing blood – ?
And the hunger
raw obsession beginning
with the shape of the asparagus:
sun-deprived white and purple-shadow-veined,
she buys three kilos
of the fat ones, thicker than anyone’s fingers,
she strokes the silky heads
some are so jauntily capped…
even the smell pulls her in–

Oozing hormones enthralled by her lust for more passion the woman takes full advantage of having sex while pregnant. Many can relate to such urges.


Tryst ~ b. 1964 Sunanda Tripathy

(Translated by JP Das and Arlene Zide)

When the whole city is asleep
I take of my anklets
and come into your room
with soft, stolen steps.

You lie there, unmoving
on the disordered bed,
books strewn all around.
In their midst, alone, you lie asleep,
the smile of some strange contentment
on your face.
I sit quietly by the bed,
smooth your dishevelled hair,
then bend down and with my sharp nails
tear open your chest,
and with both my hands scoop out
a fistful of pulsating soft pink flesh.

I’m spellbound by the odour of the flesh,
I hold it to my breast.
For a moment
word and silence become one –
then sky and earth
become one.

Before you come awake
I put the flesh back in its place,
caress your open chest.
The wound fills up in a moment
as if nothing had happened.

As before you go on sleeping,
and I walk quietly from your room

The out of body experience has magical yet surgically real conveyance of feelings and emotion.

Even today people strive to find emotional, sexual happiness in balance with the hard buckled constraints of the modern day.

Poetry can offer that momentary escapism and even time to reflect before thrusting back into our fast paced society.

Noori whilst being disabled has a vested interest in creative writing. Her writing style delivers subject matters in a unique and descriptive way. Her favourite quotation: “Don't tell me the moon is shining; show me the glint of light on broken glass” ~ Chekhov.

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