Tattoos and Commitments

Abishake Koul   I met her when she was young, She had a tattoo of a Chinar leaf, And the leaf had a bullet hole in it, Even the tattooed leaf had withered.   Her voice quivered when she spoke, Of guns brushing against her body, And then she showed … Read more →

Wait, where are all the men?

Padmashri Maddala   Wait: Where are all the men? Women, young and old Family, friends and relatives, All around her women bustle as, moist memories flood their blank eyes thin strands of old bonds cling on mutely. The jaded mirror on the wall stares back in turmoil, Can she wear … Read more →

Memoir and other poems

Minerva   MEMOIR Loving you I’ve outloved myself. How does a desperate person love? till the point of desperation and a little more. A yawn stretched to a sigh in the corner of my eye swims a black dot. A black fairy flies to the sky and smothers it black … Read more →

Nights and other poems

Sahana Mukherjee   Nights packed in a suitcase, your heart turns liminal like each landing of a staircase in a book each border you cross to dig out the inheritance of graves.   Bring me a stone I slipped into my pocket a maple leaf for you. It dried up … Read more →

Unheard Ordeal of a Half Widow

  Khan Ansur   life has become a dirge, torn image, I’ve become alike silence has engulfed my life so, entangled in melancholy   decade passed, as if a century I’ve gone through, with your memories, still waiting for you,   vividly I remember those days, when you used to … Read more →

A festival inside four walls

On the day of Eid-ul-Fitr, Ahmed Bin Qasim pens a poem for his incarcerated father and mother. Ahmed is the youngest son of Asiya Andrabi the chief of Dukhtaran-e-Millat who is serving a latest sentence under the draconian Public Safety Act, and Dr. Qasim Faktoo who is in jail since 1992. I could hear … Read more →

NaPoWriMo: April Poems

In the month of April which is dedicated to poetry Samia Meraj curates some poems for Kashmir Lit. The poets featured here are Inshah Malik, Omair Bhat, Sobia Bhat, and Samia herself. Scroll down to read:    Inshah Malik 1 Heart aches for summer, And you aren’t around I had asked … Read more →

Absolute

Jhilmil Breckenridge   Does it serve you well? The white robes, giving sermons from high. Do you sleep well in the inky night? When your voice instigates rivers of red  in valleys of peace? It is heard that God’s words were to be read and interpreted. You are the interpreter … Read more →

Sorry and other poems

Ruhan Madni Naqash Sorry  Sorry for not being your “lovely handsome Kashmiri boy; beautiful Kashmiri babe”- I’ve been very busy dying on the roads with these polka dots you make on my body with your guns- I’ve been very busy crying Freedom. Freedom. Freedom for the walls for not being … Read more →

Ammi

Zunaira Komal I wrote this poem about a year ago when I was visiting “Azad” Jammu-Kashmir, my mother’s homeland. I wanted to explore generational differences in understanding the Kashmiri struggle for Azadi (liberation) and solidarity across the Line of Control. I wanted to write about my mother, a Kashmiri who … Read more →

Glass Houses

Sumayya Syed   “Nikita is again on a date tonight,” he types into WhatsApp From his lonely South Delhi bachelor pad On what is a thinly-veiled moonlit spring night in Kashmir Where loneliness is an A Almost an invitation To Resistance, Because what is Resistance If not the thyme and the … Read more →

Dust

Shruti Sonal I had died three hundred and thirty-three times Till my body finally gave in Ten times on the last day itself First when I woke up in the morning And did not find my son sleeping beside me Second when I found him wrestling with a barbed wire … Read more →

Hear me O Scribe!

Yogesh Mishra Following is a poem titled: ‘Hear me O scribe!’ that emerges out of my interactions with some young Kashmiris. It was a collective feeling amongst them that there was too much focus on the conflict, and as residents of the contested terrain, they became mere subjects for researchers. … Read more →

Untitled

Vrinda Jotwani   “You have started stitching your words into Kashmir,  pulling threads from the kashida cushions of this bed,  your mother buried herself in making you leave this graveyard.  She tries to convince you to fold your hands into nationalism,  how could you, you say we have been living … Read more →