5 Poems of Self-Deception


(For Rommel & Mia)

He starts the day
by waking up at
the wee small hours
to check on his dreams
& the unmerciful
noises on the street below,
then restarts the engine of his eyes
at four to fill up
on prescribed drugs
to keep the evil tidings
of the nights away.
A bowl of porridge,
then a slice of cheese at noon
to be repeated
when the sun is edged off
by the moon
finally sums up
his time on earth
multiplied 365 a year
& he knows a century
& he’ll turn mad,
much like the angels
in heaven
who’d probably get bored
singing to the Holy One
ad nauseam,
but for the occasional groans
of mortals who manage
to break through
the cordon sanitaire
of the universal server.
At night
there’s the book of life
that warns him
of the quirk
of everyday chores,
but something spectacular
happens daily,
which in the regularity
of action & routine
 only the lunatic
could fathom.
Yes, if this is life
of continuous repetition
of sadness, death,
anger, aloneness
why hasn’t everybody
wised up
to the irrefutable fact
that like a propeller
we keep on turning,
turning, turning
in an endless whirring
until the battery turns low
& we expire.
We’ve all along known
we were born
deaf & blind
yet philosophized
we idiots are alive!


(For Sarah)

He surveys the mask
in the mirror
& decides it could never be
because it looked ornery
& arcanely old,
much like the scarecrow
he ran away from
like a scaredy cat…
He never met a guy
so arrogantly ugly-
& all along
he was thinking
his heart’s
full of good intentions
& snow-white spleen –
much like Baudelaire
diagnosing the world
an armpit of flowers and rocks
& him rising
above miasmic decay.
But the mirror
wouldn’t lie
& so bumping into a young woman
who strangely smiled
he quickly turned around
& scooted away like a rat
because he’d fall again
into classic gap
that he’s not alone
& she didn’t mean
he’s an incorrigible buffoon.



His birthday marks
a century of nothingness
& habitual perdition:
the dilapidated homes
& poor kinfolks
who changed his childhood
into a bestiary
he wouldn’t consecrate…
His growing years
a blur in the shifting seasons
of pennilessness
& dereliction
when he’d dawdle
in a corner
& watch like a fool
the world saunter by:
O nothing but occasional laughter
of derisive women
& compassionate rats
define his nights & days
that are warm & chilly
and sizzling strangely
like a sunburnt face
immersed in a basin of ice:
it couldn’t catch fire.
Yes, his b-day
is a notch in the trunk of years
& he’s stuck with poems
that merely say life, Horatio, sucks!
& when at that hour
he’d nurse his gin
as if waiting for something
to turn out interesting
the wind would howl
& stop the clock
because all that matters
is silence anyhow.
His day is no big deal.
His paltry scheming
is a long textual ordeal.
About time he pleased
like a genial innkeeper
the weary
& despondent traveler?



After all is said & done,
after all the texts
in the blog & mind,
like a paper dipped
in water
a soggy image slowly appears:
All the complexity
of color & lines
congeal into a face
(& an imagined voice)
that reveals nothing
for it flowers
from the dream alchemy
of personal events
& desires
that utter
a sigh,
a shout,
a shriek,
a lack
in the belly of the cosmos
that sees nothing,
hears nothing
& reads nothing
of his blot
of dialectical history.


The Seekers
(For Bugsy)

For now they think, he smiles,
they’re enamoured with Plato & Hegel,
& company:
Didn’t they invent
an order of profundity
to know the world
in Derridean category?
After all,
Heidegger, for instance,
is an everyday concern of blood & bones
& the Nazi’s claim to falsification;
why death haunts the living
& any fool
is bound to meet his being
like some familiar harlequin,
O nothing’s so ordained
but the banal questions remain:
why someone’s happier than the other,
& why living is making the most
of existential here,
& in a time of terror
making the world
bereft of suicide bombers
& promises of heaven and hell
is the stone that shouldn’t matter.
O that we must live
at the edge of dying
is the rule & stygian bluster.
O philosophy
a word with simply four letters.

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