“through the act of living, the discovery of oneself is made concurrently with the discovery of the world around us. . ."

Monday, February 16, 2009


Like fireflies they come,
Out of  the darkness around me
And I realize I am not blind.

Like dewdrops they fall,
From the canopy above
And I realize I am thirsty.

Unchained melodies, they rise 
Like white clouds from the chasm,
And I realize I am on the edge.

They chatter like leaves of the Banyan,
Laughing children running home from school,
And I realize I am alive.

Like flamingoes they lift,
Sunrays tinting feathers gold
And I realize I have a soul.

They come scampering,
Like my dogs after a bath
Shaking, spraying droplets,
Big arcs of love,
Crying, ‘Wake up! Wakeup!
Play with us!’ –

Happily, I take up the pen.
Balachandran, Trivandrum, 16.02.2009

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Flowers, squashed


Please watch your step.

You may be stepping on lives.

That is, if you consider

An ant, a frog, a cockroach or me

Lives worth your consideration.

These flowers? Ah, never mind,

They were my offerings to you.

*********  Balachandran, Trivandrum, 11.02.2009

Friday, February 6, 2009

Blue Moon


Blue Moon!

How would thee be?

Blue, like the skies over the mountains

Or the sea a hundred fathoms deep?

Would thee be a lavender blue

Or a fragrance from Satchmo’s jazz?


Nights –

I do not remember days anymore –

Nights –

Rattle of toddy cats on the roof

Rustle of the mango tree in the breeze

The howl of my dogs

Pining for love.

Through the window

A moon, waxing and waning

Clouded out.


She said she would glance at my words

Once in a blue moon.

I seek thee, Blue Moon!

How would thee come?

On the fourteenth night

Thy anklets tittering,

Lifting thy veil

And -

Looking at me with love?

******  Balachandran V, Trivandrum, 06-02-2009






Behind the rectangular glass case

A bent head, lit sideways by a lamp

A lens, stuck into the socket of the right eye

A forceps in hand, drawing out

The innards of a dead watch.


Tickers tick loud

Tolling, the impending doom.

Watches lie about

In various states of disembowelment.

Old, huge clocks hang in the walls

Like Capuchin monks in the catacombs.


How precise! His fingers wield the tiny tool

And stab it into the underbelly of my watch.

I stand still -  

My time is at his mercy.


 Balachandran V, Trivandrum, 06-02-2009

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

What we do not want

(for Sumi Mathai)

We keep our eyes shut
in fear
of what we might see
of ourselves...

we keep our ears closed
for fear
of what we might hear
our heart says...

when our hands shiver
when our mind hesitates -
we know
we know
what we do not want to know...

***************** Balachandran, Trivandrum 03-02-2009


( for Sumi Mathai) 

A fish's life isn't easy.
Look at me.
I cannot close my eyes
I cannot stop moving
I cannot help hearing
All that I never wanted to.

I do not sleep
I do not dream
All I know
That a few strokes ahead
I will kiss the cold reflection
of my own self. 

Thank you, Lord, for this glass cage...
*********************  Balachandran, Trivandrum, 03.02.2009