Alien Winter — IV

White seizes the city.
Peace blows
into pieces.
Chaos is kicked around
and shoveled.
On a walk to the library
two foggy eyes
sunk inside a snow-hollowed face
accost you.

“Do you have a fu–ing nickel?”
You walk on,
frosty, quiet.
At the crossing,
the doped beggar marches on,
leaving you with,
“You are a fu–ing nigger,”
before accosting his
next potential
fu–ing benefactor.

Below your feet,
the ice takes
forever to melt.
Flurries go about
their business, settling
like drandruff on walkers’
coats, car tops,
a pigeon’s wings.

Guarding a hotel is
a pine tree
bi-polar —
half-covered in
snow moss.



6 thoughts on “Alien Winter — IV

  1. ‘His mood was off also for the damp foggy weather and the third letter ends with its description. Here days are short and in the approaching winter they were becoming shorter. At home the rumbling clouds gather in layer upon layer in a wide sky but here it rained silently in drips and not in showers from a low and pale monochrome sky. Because of the cold daily bath was a miserable experience. He could not get out of his bed before 8 in the morning and evening descended at 4 in the afternoon when he felt somewhat depressed and lonely. To keep warm one has to put on a lot of dress. Whenever he went out in his native dress the locals lost their speech in surprise. There would be some who would shout – ‘Jack, look at the blackies!’ Such things our poet completely ignored.’ – This is from ‘Traveller Rabindranath 5’ at – it happened 137 years ago to the poet, then aged 17.

  2. Kumud Biswas, thank you for sharing that moving snippet. True, what happened to the poet continues to haunt immigrants and outsiders the world over to this day.

  3. Love this great post Bhaswati. It has taken me to a different world and given me some ideas that I hope to use in my writing, one day. Thank you.
    Flurries go about their business, …………..a pigeon’s wings.
    Guarding a hotel is a pine tree………snow moss. Wonderful, wonderful!

    What’s a ‘snow moss’, surely moss doesn’t grow on snow, or does it?

  4. Thanks for your comment, Arun Debnath. No, moss doesn’t grow on snow. The snow itself appears like moss in this case.

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