In every bazaar, in various avatars, I see, I hear our story.
They sell, enact in streets & houses everywhere our story.
I have long forgotten the specific rehearsed words you said.
But in gossip, in surreal phrasings I volunteer our story.
A spicy beginning, raunchy moments with musical interludes;
even to the climax, Bollywoodish seemed our affair, our story.
Quite a pang I feel, when people talk about broken-hearts.
Just for variety’s sake, could have been singular our story.
‘No resemblance to living or dead’, I claim, my dearest.
On the page, I let my impartial memory steer our story.
Promise of secrecy was sacrosanct, my idol I worshiped you!
But it was my silent veneer that let the society infer our story.
Does time travel on a Hindu bicycle: birth, rebirth, birth, rebirth?
Don’t you get bored, O Ishwar1, repeating each year, our story?
Maugham’s Mildred, Dicken’s Estella, Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina –
How come all the writers know the heroines insincere, our story?
Are even nations like men who make friends, foes, are born to die?
Are even nations cursed, ordained to share our fate severe, our story?
As a detached outsider, it is easy to see my voyage was doomed.
Looking back, I myself wonder, why did I engineer our story?
No disasters, animosities, no catacombs, bastards lurk in our story.
Why is Vivek writing ghazals? Has he begun to revere our story?
*1 Ishwar means God: Hindus believe in rebirth. While Yugam is era.
Indian Literature | Indian Review Author | Vivek Sharma‘s first book of verse The Saga of a Crumpled Piece of Paper (Writers Workshop, Calcutta, 2009) was shortlisted for Muse India Young Writer Award 2011. His work in English appears in Atlanta Review, Bateau, Poetry, The Cortland Review, Muse India, Reading Hour among others while his Hindi articles and verses appear in Divya Himachal (Hindi newspaper, India), Himachal Mitra and Argala. Vivek grew up in Himachal Pradesh (Himalayas, India), and moved to the United States in 2001. Vivek is a Pushcart nominated poet, is published as a scientist and he lives and teaches in Chicago.