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Archive for the ‘English’ Category

I Have a Bulletproof Dream

Sunday, December 25th, 2016

Pabitra Bag

Let me tell you…                          pabitra

I have a bulletproof dream

Made of love, transparent and transcendental

Where at times you feel

 The dance of infinity and you became the one with everything

Where you feel neither disturbed by anyone

Nor have any altered state of consciousness

Respecting the social boundaries

of race, caste-class, gender, region, religion and stupidity

Let me tell you…

I have a bulletproof dream of DID syndrome

Where expectations is not troubling enough to be Desires

Where the expectations and desires have no Instability

Where desire is not a wild Dissatisfied and unstable bird

I have a bulletproof dream of honesty

Made of no hate, no pretension, no dependency and no lie

Where the language of love is a smile of no attachments

Such is the bulletproof dream with the dance of infinity

Let me tell you…

I have a bulletproof dream of colours

A dream of rainbow colours but with happiness as colours

With smiles as its figure and gladness as its gender

Where respect is the language and equality is feelings

Where freedom is the absolute state of inner and transcendental being

Where, in law, constitutionalism is the religion and justice is the highest form of love

~~

Pabitra Bag is a Ph.D student at the Centre for the Study of Law and Governance, JNU

 

Salute to you Babasaheb…

Sunday, December 11th, 2016

Pabitra Bag

babasaheb-ambedkar_1

Salute to you Babasaheb…            

That day you died was not the day of death                               

But the moment of victory over death

That every Ambedkarite wishes to live once again

That moment was not the moment of cessation but the beginning

You took birth in many forms, in multiple ways in the hearts of people

As songs, music, happiness, harmony, emotions and anger

Your death was not the death of a body

You did not live the life of one but you choose to live the aspiring lives of mankind

You are the total culmination of transcendentality of shramic tradition

You were the ocean, the ocean of it all

Salute to you Babasaheb…

That day you died as body but you remain as seeds sprouting to become trees

Things of the past became the treasure of the present

You appeared in many symbols, became the ray of hope

You replaced a total of 33 crore gods and goddesses in every Ambedkarite house

At times, the Ambedkarites imagine the wall to be alive with all five senses of you

Equality, liberty, fraternity, Wisdom and Dhamma

The wall embraced new calendars with every day of the month remembering leaders of the marginalized

And the old calendars with the names and images of Brahminical Gods and Goddesses were replaced

Salute to you Babasaheb…

That day you died was not the day of death

But the moment of victory over death

That every Ambedkarite wishes to live once again

If you were not there, the lives we are living now would not have been the same

You died but you live in people’s hearts and in their aspirations

Salute to you Babasaheb…

~~

Pabitra Bag is a Ph.D student at the Centre for the Study of Law and Governance, JNU
 

Who? Me? A Casteist?

Monday, September 26th, 2016

Vivek Singh

Who? Me? A casteist?                          vivek-singh1

Oh, you must be mistaken,         
Such illogical things have been shaken. 

These are things of past,
Generations ago, it is said,
Human dignity was torn and shred.

But not today, sir, no.
How could untouchability have survived rationality?
If you think I'm wrong, check the legality.

Untouchability: BANNED
Manual Scavenging: BANNED
Discrimination: BANNED

See, sir, it's all gone now,
BANNED, by law, by the government,
Who says now it exists? Now there’s development.

What? A study shows it exists?
Well, sir you know how it is,
Those foolish villagers do all sorts of rubbish.

What? In cities too?
Old habits die hard, you know,
Some people just don't grow.

Oh, but they are very few, sir.
Modernity has dawned, development is here.
Awareness has grown, now even the few will disappear.

What? Me? A casteist? Why, sir?
For opposing reservation in colleges and universities?
That is because I believe in quality and equality.

What? Then the maid should get the same food?
Oh she does- everything left is for her.
Same plate? Same table? On a chair?

With all due respect, are you a fool, sir?
Dare I break traditions, sir!
I'm virtuous and religious, no wrong ever.

So, no to inter-caste marriages too?
That bhangi-chamar my wife? How can I break traditions?
Why curse me with unequals for life, give me equals for celebration.

What about equality then?
What? Human Dignity?
What about 'it's gone now'?

Oh, dear sir, be patient.
Don't be such a hard-core idealist.
You know, some things always exist.

~~

Vivek Singh is currently doing his MA (Political Science) from JNU

 

Mook Nayak, our Mukiya Nayak

Friday, January 8th, 2016

Kadhiravan (Hari) 

Just like your god,

You morph into multiple avatars,

Just as you like,

A Hindu atheist, a Hindu communist,

A Hindu Left, and a Hindu Right,

Just like your god,

Formless, you take shape,

Caste-less and yet full of caste,

Benevolent, and yet full of hate,

Just as much mysticism, just as you like,

Just like your god,

With limitless power, to discipline us,

To make us your dumb worshippers,

But, not long shall we remain, dumbed down,

We have our Mook Nayak, our Mukiya Nayak,

Who teaches us to break idols!

~

But when I do pray at your temples,

When I tread with the weight of your flags,

Flags of all your colours, red, reddish and more,

When I learn to by-heart your theories,

Your lies on all our lives,

From where I consume your abuse,

And learn the art of self-abuse,

I remain a Pariah,

I remain a category among categories,

Of the many creations, you have created,

Not a Hindu, not a Marxist, not lettered, not a human,

I remain a Pariah, praying at your altars,

Waving your flags, reciting your rhymes,

Remaining what I am, so you would remain all the same,

But, not long shall we remain, dumbed down,

We have our Mook Nayak, our Mukiya Nayak,

Who teaches us to break idols!

 

 

Burnt Skin!

Wednesday, September 23rd, 2015

Dickens Leonard M

 

I am a burnt skin

A burnt skin I am

Beaten to the death

For the death of the dead

I am a burnt skin

A burnt skin I am

 

Danda danda danda nakka

Danda danda danda nakka

 

I die to love and live

A truth I choose to give

To the ones who stay alive

For the ones who lie and die

I am a burnt skin

A burnt skin I am

 

Danda danda danda nakka

Danda danda danda nakka

 

I rot from within

Beaten black and blue

A flamed kovil theru*

A theru to be bombed

I am a burnt skin

A burnt skin I am

 

Danda danda danda nakka

Danda danda danda nakka

 

I stink from within 

Silent were the voiced

Kidnapped and suicided

Honoured on the rails

An engineer murdered*

Forsaken forgotten

 

I am a burnt skin

Flamed and bombed I am

Forsaken forgotten

A burnt skin I am

 

Danda danda danda nakka

Danda danda danda nakka

~

*Kovil Theru – Temple Car; a colony at Seshamudram, near Villupuram was attacked on August 15th, Independence day.

"A promise ends in a riot," see http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/state-view-a-promise-ends-in-a-riot-in-tamil-nadu/article7569721.ece

*An engineer Gokul Raj was reportedly murdered on June 23rd.

"Caste-gestapo in TN," see http://www.thenewsminute.com/article/caste-gestapo-tn-cracking-down-dalit-boys-falling-love-caste-hindu-girls-31893 

Dickens Leonard M is a research scholar at University of Hyderabad.

Ramai

Thursday, May 28th, 2015

Pradnya Jadhav

ramai

It has been ages we since we have spoken

Perhaps, I never felt the need to converse with you, because I would see you around forever

But today, while seeing your picture, I realized your quietness; I realized it could not mean you are calm..

Ramai,

Let us speak today, I might say a few words, I might ask you a few questions..

I don’t know if you will answer those or respond to me, may I request you to listen to me?

Ramai,

I have always seen you as a very kind person, very patient, extremely tolerant

Through all those writings about you, you were constantly portrayed that way…

We admire you for your loving and caring nature,

for all the hardship you had to carry throughout your life,

for being a supportive partner of Babasaheb and for all the sacrifices you made..

But Ramai-

Was this journey easy for you?

Were you so extremely patient and forbearing that you never complained?

Ramai,

You were a thinking being; didn’t you ever say a word about your pain?

I am amazed and would like to understand how it would have been for you?

I’m sure you must have definitely talked to at least yourself, to someone close to you,

you must have become agitated..

But regrettably your words, your voice never reached us Ramai,

Because way before we had learned about your nature, about your feelings, about your sorrows and thinking

Perhaps, we had naturalized your hardships…

Ramai..

I can only salute you for being whatever you were!

~

 

Ramabai (1896-1935) was the daughter of Bhiku Dhutre. Ramabai was married to Bhimrao Ambedkar in 1906.

Today, 27th May, is the death anniversary of Ramabai Ambedkar

Legacy of Savitribai

Tuesday, January 20th, 2015

 

Yogesh Maitreya

If mother had heard about you,             savitribai_photo

she would have penned

about her life what she knew.

But since her life

was devoid of pen and paper,

she decided

to work, make bread and labour

so that I could hold

the pen and the paper

and write what has been erased.

My mother did the same for my sisters

and when I look at them now

it only makes me revisit you

and I think:

how a woman, my mother, never knowing your name

could bequeath Savitribai

to her daughters.

~~~

Yogesh Maitreya is a poet, writer and publisher.

~

Image courtesy: from the book A Forgotten Liberator: The Life and Struggle of Savitribai Phule

Remembering Panthers

Thursday, August 21st, 2014

Yogesh Maitreya

We are the sunflowers, woven into a garland

With the distance of years

In which we transformed from untouchables to human.

Now you have departed,

I am still waiting to repay my debts

To our no-homeland.

I walk about your city, your dearest whore,

Whom you kissed with your passion

Like no one before.

Here,

The night finally seems to rest in the night.

The abandoned dark hole, the untouched life,

We, the broken ones, mocked them both,

With our loud howls.

Our howl now talks with the Sun,

Foreplays with the Moon.

 

Bombay, your dearest whore

Now changed to its nakedness, and,

Menstruating the orange blood,

She calls herself ‘Mumbai’ now.

But I prefer to call her as your dearest whore

As your children yet to be allowed a home

To keep their humanness in the bedrooms

To eat health in the kitchens,

I see them under the bridge of Chants of heaven,

Or political coalitions,

With bodies covered with half-nakedness,

With stomachs relished in sacred cocaine.

I don’t need to struggle to know

What does it mean to love or to be loved by this whore?

 

I close my eyes and think of your abode,

I close my eyes and remember your marches

To defend the dignity of the dead bodies of Kamathipura,

I close my eyes and do not want to open them again

Because I won’t bear your absence.

 

But I must wake up in this morning,

The mendicant is standing here with a sunflower

To enlighten us.

And I will sing the song you composed and set to tune,

To dance on the stage you made with the bricks of your bones

To pay a tribute to our ancestors’ history

That despite being cheated, and,

Erased from the pages of history,

Reminds us:

We are the people, broken ones

We are the people playing truth’s drum

We are the people drinking the ocean

We are the people rising above the Sun.

 

Yogesh Maitreya is from Nagpur and is doing his M.A in Criminology and Justice (2013-15) from TISS (Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai).

Unwanted

Monday, August 18th, 2014

(For my mother)

Daisy Katta

In your womb I shook,

I felt a thunder,

Like this abode of your body,

Was not safe anymore,

For me and you.

I must have heard a piercing scream,

And maybe you cried that night,

I do not recall,

But you stood calm,

Just to preserve me

But I know,

Someone kicked your belly,

Because you were not wanted,

And nor was I.

They wanted us dead,

Our sheer existence,

Your womb and your very being

Was shaken again and again,

How many times was your body bruised?

How many times was your soul erased?

Did you tell your mother then?

Of your agony and pain?

Perhaps not.

The shackles of four walls,

Must have maimed you then.

But I know what you did,

You treaded with your little feet,

Carrying pots of water,

On your aching body,

You washed the bucket of clothes,

And burned that little stove,

Which splintered sparks on your wounds,

Just to nourish me.

When I was born you said,

You said,

There was no pain,

You forehead was drenched with sweat but no agony,

You smiled at me with sheer pleasure,

Because it was your victory,

As well as mine.

 

Daisy Katta is a mass media graduate from Mumbai and currently works at Tata Institute of Social Sciences as Research Investigator. 

‘Storyteller gone’

Tuesday, April 29th, 2014

(For my grandfather)

Yogesh Maitreya

Today, there is longing in my eyes

To play on your shoulder,

But your bones are liquidated

Into particles of scented soil.

Sorry for that.

I don’t mean to delay.

But I realise much later

In the university’s library

That you are the book of my history,

A storyteller of bloody tales,

Mirror of my old self,

Clue to my possible martyrdom or yours

To being an untouchable

Outside of the village,

Which I die to read again and again

In this age of identity crisis.

When I ask papa now, about

The name of your grandfather,

He finds no books

In which the story of his name

Was written.

Well, he doesn’t read books as well.

You both are silent now,

You, behind my eyes,

As binoculars through which

I can see the blur

Of our vanished stories.

And papa, before my eyes,

With handicapped words

Of alcoholic silence,

Of which I am the victim,

Deprived of stories

Of our old selves.

 

Yogesh Maitreya is from Nagpur and is doing his M.A in Criminology and Justice (2013-15) from TISS (Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai).

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