(A Quarterly International Peer-reviewed Refereed e-Journal
Devoted to English Language and Literature)
Dr D C Chambial (b. 1950) is a trilingual (English, Hindi and Pahari of Himachal Pradesh) poet, critic, and translator. He served HP Education Department for about 38 years in various capacities and retired as Associate Professor of English. He guided about 15 M. Phil and 5 Ph.D. scholars. He has published 11 books of his poems in English, one in Hindi, and edited one on the Poetry of Himachal Pradesh. He edits Poetcrit (since 1988), an international journal devoted to literary criticism and contemporary poetry. He resides at Maranda (HP), Pin: 176102; and can also be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The fire test for purity.1
The test for virtuosity.2
The test for piety.3
The test for chastity.4
How many tests?
in the witness box?
Men, in society, go scot free;
though they perpetrate,
with her. On her.
if ever, violated,
is violated together.
She’s to suffer consistently.
She’s made a scapegoat.
What a justice!
Here the allusions are to:
1Sita – the wife of Lord Rama in the Ramayana;
2 Draupadi – the consort of Pandvas from the Mahabharata;
3 Ahilya - the wife of Gautama Maharishi.
4 Anusuya – the wife of sage Atari, one of the saptarishis.
2. In Silence
I write your name
on the sands of the shore
a wave came and left the shore clean
helplessly I saw it so gone.
I write your name atop
the highest mountain, where waves
could not reach. it snowed there.
the name was buried and gone.
I wrote your name on the slopes
of the mountain. it rained
so heavily. the name here too
was washed with the water away.
I wrote your name on sand
of the desert. the wind in rage
in the white heat of the sun
the sand-dunes erased the name.
I tried to write it on the slush
of the marshes; it came over
before I could finish my oeuvre
I failed to make it stay there too.
Exhausted, I sat in silence
etched your name on the canvas
of my heart. there it
stays clear and bright till the end.
3. Capture The Fugitives
While sitting behind the window
I see some words stealthily show up
and tread tip-toe in a row
and array themselves
into a format they pleased, I think I know.
There they performed all the acrobatics
grouping and regrouping tactics
as in a show to the public
front and rear, up and own full of tricks
slowly and slowly, the canvas they pricked.
As they made their way into the mind
they of every sort and kind.
They filled the room. stayed there bind.
Laughed and laughed to see them so aligned.
And hastened them to tame kernel and rind.
Suddenly there was a storm strong
all the players, there in the ground
they rushed away from the shaking tree aground
the furious lightning and thunder abound
felt stirred from sleep chased by a hound.
All the players and the storm gone
before i could my hoe and sickle hone
and capture the fugitives so flown
and wished them well in their life to go down
and saw the stage yellow, so lively grown.
interferes with present
Build a wall,
to contain the tsunami.
Let the water of hope
flow in cascades
reflecting the sunlight
Make an attempt.
See through the opacity
form and transform,
mould and remould
the waves emerging
in the sea yet to be born.
Weave a wall-hanging
of myriad patterns:
5. A New Heaven
The old year’s passed into the annals of history.
The new year after peeping from over the yonder hill
carries a bag full and well strapped:
it’s full of its myriad gifts:
they may be guffaws of boisterous laughter
borrowed from the abysmal deeps of the sky and space;
they may be tears soaked in blood of the starved.
I don’t have any wishes wishes …
I’ve only some entreaties to the One who looks over the cosmos
and to my brethren around the vast world
to allay/alleviate the tears and change them to the laughter.
The world is too good a place
where all of us—the human beings
should live as His Happy and sanguine souls
removing the thorns on the ways,
make them play with rivers of their tears.
Let’s join hands in a chain
in the world to scatter and pollens of chagrin
and usher for all into a new Heaven of happiness.