Author Archives: Sunil Sharma

About Sunil Sharma

Sunil Sharma is Principal at Bharat College – affiliated to University of Mumbai, Mumbai – at Badlapur, Mumbai Metropolitan Region, India. He is a bilingual critic, poet, literary interviewer, editor, translator, essayist and fiction writer. Some of his short stories and poems have already appeared, among others, in prestigious journals like: Hudson View (South Africa), Munyori, The Plebian Rag and the Bicycle Review (all three USA e-zines), Asia Writes; New Woman (Mumbai); Creative Saplings, Brown Critique and Kritya (Indian e-zines); the Seva Bharati Journal of English Studies (West Bengal), Indian Literature (of Sahitya Akademy, New Delhi), Labyrinth (Gwalior), Poets International (Bangalore), Contemporary Vibes (Chandigarh), Indian Journal of Post-colonial Literatures (Kerala) and Prosopisia (Ajmer). Some of his poems and shorts have been anthologized in national and international collections. Besides that, he is a freelance journalist in English. His areas of strength are Marxism, Literary Theory and Cultural Studies. His book on the Philosophy of the Novel – a Marxist Critique is already published and got a good response. His debut novel – The Minotaur – dealing with dominant ideologies and sociopolitical realities of the 20th century was also published from Jaipur (India) in 20009. The novel was released in South Africa in December, 2009. As a freelance, he has more than 1,000 news articles published in DK Plus, Times of India, Mumbai. His six short stories and the novel Minotaur are prescribed currently for the undergraduate classes under the Post-colonial Studies at the Clayton University, Morrow, Georgia, USA. He has also edited, along with Dr Jaydeep Sarangi, an anthology of shorts, The Editors’ Choice: Contemporary Short Stories in Indian English, published by Gnosis Publications, New Delhi, 2010. He is one of the editors for the NFJ (New Fiction Journal), an international journal devoted to the short stories. A collection of poems: Poetry amid the Golden Barrel Cacti was released in November-2011 from Authors Press, Delhi. He serves on many advisory boards of quality international literary and online journals. He can be contacted through email at: drsharma.sunil@gmail.com Special achievements: Featured in this encyclopedia: http://www.best-poems.net/editors/1329 Poet of the month at The HyperTexts: http://www.thehypertexts.com/Current_and_Back_Issues.htm

To Emily Dickinson: An epistle

Your words comfort

Across the divide of

Time- space and race;

You lived in isolation,

 

I am Nobody! Who are you?

Are you- Nobody- too?

Then there is a pair of us!

That is what you said in

One of your famous poems

That might shock today’s narcissists

Poets and all others that revere

Their self-image;

Yet, living and dying un-loved,

Your poetic soul was incredibly rich,

And included the whole universe in it

Like that other distinguished voice,

Walt Whitman, your peer,

And both of you

Spoke about us,

And still speak to us,

Although the world hardly listens

To its own great masters .

Gaza burning

Gaza burns bright day/night, sans any succor,

While the world debates on and on,

The TV captures the sound-bytes;

It is a place where every poetic heart bleeds

For the young, the sick and the hapless ones

Condemned to die by screaming missiles

Dead on targets inside/outside homes/hospitals,

The pixs look so familiar in a hate-filled world,

The wounded cry out in pain, while the dead, disfigured

And bloodied, are beyond that human threshold and crossed to

A different world where perhaps, peace and love and light prevail;

Their suffering is over but the living suffer the pangs of loss and

Life-long mourning, while the depraved celebrate on both sides

Of divide, thus stoking fires of hatred via their mad laughter

And eyes crazed;

The fight will erupt somewhere else and another cleansing will

Take place, bombs will go off and murder and mayhem will be staged

Till every human that carries a bit of poison inside cleanses that;

Till that moment is realized and peace becomes a mindset

And is permanent,

Each fresh victim is part Gaza and part Israel,

And in the theater of war, it is innocence that gets finally killed.

 

Do I wake or sleep?

Was it a vision, or a waking dream?

                Fled is that music:—Do I wake or sleep?

That is a question posed by Keats

In his inimitable Ode to a Nightingale.

Between a vision and a waking dream,

Lies a sphere unique processed by the brain;

An enchanting area full of melodies,

Some heard; some, un-heard.

The sole self roams these territories

Bound by time-space, yet un-bound.

Between waking up and dream,

The elusive state of being

Asleep and awake,

The intermediate zone/place

Between physical and meta-physical,

Real and fancy,

Determined and non-determined,

By heavy material constraints,

The creative mind navigates the

Labyrinth of the Unseen

And finally discovers the poetic

In the everyday, the Seen.

 

 

 

Billund

 

This scented wind

Rising off the fields

Freshly covered with

Tender green planted

There by the young and

Darkly handsome monsoon,

This scented wind reminds me

Of you and Billund;

The summer breeze fragrant

And lightly kissing cheeks

Like a playful mom welcoming

Her after-school kids on an open porch,

The meadows, the trees, the lazy lakes,

The hedges and the birds of this scenic

Danish town with its smiling residents saying Hi

To utter strangers on cool summer afternoons!

Billund is a piece of paradise created by loving hearts

And minds and a global capital of children in a most

Happy nation!

Roaming the muttering streets with Mr. Eliot

Let us go then, you and I,

When the evening is spread out against the sky

Like a patient etherized on a table;

And there, you, Mr. Eliot, my companion,

On these grey half-deserted Indian streets,

Searching for that overwhelming question,

Should I ask now?

Well, the streets go on un-ending,

Arguments in closed bedrooms

That go on and on,

Never resolving in the humidity and heat

Of coastal Mumbai;

I find that we still talk of you,

In elite drawing-rooms and stuffy academe,

Mr. Eliot, the prim and proper gentleman,

And a classicist surveying inner/outer

Wastelands,

Despite a post-colonial experience

Of more than 66 years!

Is it not very strange?

Redefining current selves/ ourselves through your

Blue lens.

 

Kindness

A fat man on a pricey bike

Stops nearby— to feed a brown cow

Near a busy curb, while other motorists swerve

Around the idling figures,

And the lolling cow nods her big brown head

To his reverential touch;

Another slim woman in a Punjabi dress

Enters, once the man exits in a jiffy,

Offers a pale-yellow banana to the placid bovine,

Touches her forehead and is gone

Random acts of kindness and empathy,

In an Indian metro known for cruelty

For its hapless strays and homeless alike.

Figures in the sky

 

In the in-between sky,

A rain just gone and a rain

About to arrive,

Tinged with hues electrifying,

Some dark-light and some light-gloomy;

Swollen clouds, dusty and grey

Alternating with gossamer white/pale-white;

Like a swarm of kids unleashed,

Enjoying the heavenly drops,

On the broken footpaths,

Outside their leaking hovels,

These ethereal figures dance and gallop,

At the edge of a muddy ocean and jutting

Shadowy islands in the immensity above,

Created and then left hurriedly there by

The angry monsoon that reluctantly has

Finally reached Mumbai and nearby.

 

 

Elusive

You are now,

Like the shy

Monsoon clouds

Evading for days

Mumbai’s famous

Masculine skyline,

Jagged and soaring high,

Stretching wide into

Dimness white

In a long-long sky;

The ballooning clouds dark

And floating so light;

Here,

There,

Scattered everywhere,

Yet, cruelly,

Not there

For eager

Waiting

Hopeful hearts.

A late message: Mother’s Day

Mere words will not help,

Real change/deed required,

Mothers being abused, ignored, forgotten

Across a monetized world,

And conveniently

Dispatched to old people’s homes,

When they needed families the most

In the sunset of their lives;

Sadly they get completely erased from minds,

A fading picture in an old album in a dusty pile,

Being erased and sent to oblivion

By their own, the ones nourished in caring wombs!

A line or emoticon will not

Help remove the deep scars,

Perhaps, a long-delayed visit to her

Costly home peopled by memories grey

Or

A loving call to an aging heart

Will sure revive a smile on a furrowed face,

Lighting up eyes that see but dimly,

The splendors of a lovely spring outside,

A closed window of a cubicle shared by one more

Doddering inmate in a flowery gown,

Go and hug that solitary woman,

Surviving on pills, prayers and occasional chats,

The frail person that always

Stood by you in happiness and pain,

And guarded you against odds and bullies

Like a roaring lioness.

A Real Happy Mother’s Day to all!