Ten Selected Poems of Prof. Pushpita Awasthi from Echoes in the Earth

Reading Time: 8 minutes

Here are ten selected poems of Prof. Pushpita Awasthi, selected by her, in the Book Extract, from her book, Echoes in the Earth (2016) this week. A Different Truths exclusive.

Eternal Raga

In
the tender fist
of my experience
I want
to hold
the absolute
delight of love

Seeping out
of the body
I permeate
your space to
plunge into an
eternal raga

Becoming your life
my life beats
in my heart, my heartbeat
is yours now
playing your tune

Essence

 

I settle
my unwavering gaze
on the moon of love
so the essence of her light
may surface

this is love

I know you

I know you
as the flower knows its fragrance
as the water knows its taste

I know you
as the earth knows to take in water
and the water knows to get into the earth

I know you
as the flower knows its fruit
its seed

I know you
as the winds know the monsoon clouds
as the clouds know the thirst of the earth

I know you
as the words know their meaning

I know you
as the earth knows Nature’s seasons
as the seasons that know their fruits, flowers, crops

I know you
as the rain that knows its insects
moths

I know you and I save you
sometimes from your showers
sometimes from my winds

I know you
as the earth that knows its seed
and the seed that knows its earth

I know you
as the treetop knows its roots
and the roots know the tree’s nourishment

I know you
as the seeds smell their seasons
and the earth knows the anxiety of the seed

I know you
as the woman who experiences
the vibration of foetus becoming an infant

I know you
as the silence has its own words
as the vacuum has its meaningful echo
just the same way, I know you

I know you
as the soul knows the need for body
the body knows the happiness of soul

I know you
As I keep silent
as your love remains silent
in my soul

Galaxy

 

Without you
time flows in me
Like a river

I bathe in its
loneliness-infested fear
I harden the
earth of my heart to stone
that you chisel to beauty

Days of pleasure
bury themselves
in the dust of time

In my silence
I live your divine love
your silent decorous cordiality
Dark and alone

Your name is
part of the universe
swimming across the galaxy
eyes want to reach the other end
to find liberation
from the stillness

 

Peter Brands

Peter, you have words, cordial and trustful

While, in adverse times, folks sleep in peace
and dream of good times to come
You keep awake, devising ways to
protect the honest, and the simple
from adversity

Your searching eyes seek the mute
the pain of wars entombed in memorials
and museums: human civilization

In times when man is out to gobble everything
in sight, you eat little and drink less

Untouched by greed, rich in sensitivity
you stand with friends, often against yourself

Opening bottles of wine with enviable expertise
your joy is in watching others enjoy

Familiar with the crookedness of the genteel
you hold on to a moral code of your very own

Peter, you are a friend of the soul
in a world where friends become strangers
at the drop of a hat

Element

 

Like birds
eyes sow
love seeds

From the crack
of the heart
springs forth
the tree of gods

Eyes
raise
in the earth of the body
the celestial tree of desire

In the space
of the body
eyes
create cool moonbeams
warm sunrays

The elements
of the body come
together to manifest love

In love
breath understands
the language of quickened breath
the aquiver body
the flushed cheek

In the body of the heart
rhythm dissolves
has its own script
own words
own meaning
own rhythm

In solitude
the perfume of love
and salve of perfume

In love
we dissolve in each other
you live me as I live you

Love desires
in body
the feel of the beloved
consonance takes root
the soil of the body
has its own spring
The love-fired body
brims with elixir

Divine threshold of the physical
love offers itself
elemental
dissolving simply
element

Touch

Love
dissolves
melts like a liquid

The soul
immersed in
raag prarthana

Within the closed lids
the God of Love
within the folded palms
love

In love. without a signal, the body
moves beyond the body
vanishes, like a line in a song

All that remains
is the touch of the soul
Colours of Spring

Love occurs inside the body-cave
like a magic
and dazzles you
while amazing you

Love enters inside the body-cave
like a light
wraps a net of profoundness
embraces
creates the solo experience of couple
with the lines that are colourless
like an artist
inside the mural of the body

With touch
of tender delicate paintbrush
on the wall of the body
the love-pictures appear
in the inner body, not
on the outer body

The soul touches
every pore having the feeling
of the indelible, indifferent, cognate
just its presence unites the two body murals
from above and inside

it makes a ‘house’ by itself
a ‘house’ of love
a ‘house’ of faith
a ‘house’ of submission

Like the child who makes his first home
inside the mother’s womb
writes his first text with his heartbeats
on the women’s chest

The fruit of love’s result
grows in the body-tree of the woman
and like the spring
blossoms on the body-chest of the woman

Michael Sloary

Michael Sloary-
the walking Bauxite
of the Surinamese land
his words the pure
gold from the golden
womb of the earth

Michael Sloary
the nomadic Michael Sloary
his head drinks in the
wine of the tropical sun

He rests not
under the shade of
the trees burning
words drive him on
Sloary is their trusty companion

With the echo of bird-song
he creates his poems that
speak of the shriek within
sometimes of the joy
of the heart

Michael Sloary, like a miner he mines
the minds of the people
of this sub-continent

Week in and
week out the Dutch
weekly carries
the living document
of his mind’s eye

Walking the land
Michael connects his
dust with the sabana dirt of Suriname

Oh, Michael, shooting roots of
insight into the earth
he wants to grow
the tree of Surinamese life

He hears the call of
the blank page, his hand writes
the language of peoples’ heart
he has words for the gurrachbi
as he has a tale to tell
in the newspaper
Michael Sloary,
words fresh and new
like the sunshine
or the gold
of a new-dug mine.

The Ganges at the Bank of a Surinami River

1.

After a deep night
the joy of independence
surrenders into the eyes of the sleeping river
to tell its grandmother
about a hand washed clean with tears

She sinks in a Surinami river
as if it were the seam of grandmother’s dress
surrenders to her own tears
and touches in the river’s flow
at her ancestors feet[1]

2.

A river
meets a river
eases into it

A river
looks into a river’s eyes
and has to cry

A river flows on
and takes it flowing
through the mind

The Surinami river
sinks into my eyes
in the sea of my mind
searching for the Ganges

The Surinami river
mingles, as if she were a river of words
as if she were a stream of meaning
with the Ganges of the mind
to be Ganges

 

Note: Touching feet and the seam of someone’s dress is a sign of respect and reverence

About the Book

Echoes in the Earth

ISBN-13: 978-1533618801

A New Collection of Poetry by Pushpita Awasthi

Edited by Trevor Maynard

(Managing editor of The Poetic Bond series of international poetry anthologies)

Official Publication Date 18 November 2016

Willowdown Books, UK

“Pushpita’s work swirls with energy: darting and surprising, leaping and resting, comforting and challenging. Energy which, it was my role to find melody and harmony, to bring together in such a way as the work would flow with the ease of the Ganges, intrinsic to the soul of humanity, of the planet, and of the universe. This collection is therefore, a journey – a spiritual, philosophical, and human journey.”

From Editing Echoes by Trevor Maynard, © 2016

“Through the twin themes of Nature and Love, Pushpita’s work not only illuminates humanity as a whole, but her own human relationship with the human world. These elements of being human are interwoven skilfully, creating a poetic expression that has depth, articulates understanding, and possesses empathy.”

Back Cover, Echoes in the Earth, © 2016

 

About the Author

Poetess, writer, translator and literature ambassador, Prof. Pushpita Awasthi has dedicated her life for the expansion and proliferation of humanity oriented literature.  She was born in Kanpur. She studied at the renowned Kashi Hindu University, Varanasi, India, and later 20 years headed the Department of Hindi at a college of Kashi Hindu University till 2001. In 2001 she moved to Suriname (South America) as First Secretary and Professor of Hindi at the Indian Cultural Centre of the Indian Embassy at Paramaribo. Her love for Hindi drove her to bring together a Hindi community in Suriname. She organised the seventh World Hindi Conference in 2003 at Paramaribo.

Dr. Pushpita’s poetry collections include Shabd Bankar Rahti Hain Rituyen (1997), Akshat (2002), Ishwarashish(2005), Hridaya Ki Hatheli (2007), Ras Gagan Gupha Me Ajhar Jharai (2007), Antardhwani (2009), Devvruksh(2009), Shail Pratimaon Se (Hindi, English and Dutch) (2010), Tum Ho Mujhme (2013), Shabdon Me Rahti Hai Wah (2014), Bhojpatra (2015), Garbh Ki Utaran (2016). Her poems are also included in an international magazine Poetic Bond V (2015) and Poetic Bond VI (2016) from Willowdown Books, U.K.  In her poems the everyday, contemporary experience echoes the mystic poetry of Kabir and the love poetry of Sanskrit poet Jaidev.

Her poetry collections are also published in English and Dutch languages: In Woordenbestaat Ze, Hetbeeld in de rots (Dutch), The Statue in the Rock (English), Devvriksh (Poems in Hindi and English), Echoes in the Earth. Her book Echoes in the Earth was also released in the Lucknow Literary Festival of India, on 28th October 2016.

Apart from two collections of short stories she has also published a novel in Hindi called Chhinnamool. This is the first ever novel written in Hindi on the life of people of Surinam.

Dr. Pushpita has delivered many lecturers on Indian culture and recited poems in various Caribbean countries of the world including Europe, America, South America, Japan, Australia etc. She is an examiner of PhD Degree and Dissertations in Hindi Language and Literature in various Universities abroad.

Dr. Pushpita has been permanently living the Netherlands, since 2001. In 2006, she founded “Hindi Universe Foundation” for the promotion of Indian culture, literature and humanitarian causes. At present she is the director of this Foundation. She is also member of Indian Diasporas organisations all over world.

Dr. Pushpita was awarded Padmabhushan Moturi Satyanarayan Award for promotion of Hindi and writing abroad by the President of India Pranab Mukherjee on 30 May 2017. This distinguished award was announced by the Central Hindi Institute, an International level organization within the ambit of Department of Higher of Education, Ministry of Human Resource Development, India.

In her writings Pushpita shows a close relation with all the human being of the world and exhibits the philosophy of Vasudhaiv Kutumbkam (Sanskrit word meaning ‘the entire world is one family).

(Contributed by Prof Pushpita Awasthi, ‘Echoes in the Earth’, Willowdown Books, U.K).

Editor’s Note: Excerpted with permission from ‘Echoes in the Earth’, by Prof. Pushpita Awasthi, published by Willowdown Books. It is reproduced as received. DT has not edited it.

Publishers, authors or literary agents may please send Book Extract (poems, fiction and nonfiction in English language), in not more than 3000 words, including Author’s Bio. Send it to different.truths2015@gmail.com, marking Book Extract in the subject line.

©Pushpita Awasthi

Photos sourced by Pushpita Awasthi and from the internet.

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