01 January 1970

Poems: Rain Songs

Listen to the falling rain listen to it fall. The monsoon in books and films is such a sentimental thing. What it doesn't tell you is the endless dreary routine it imposes. When one cannot step out for a walk, a tired gaze becomes damper than the clothes that never quite dry. And then, think of the sentient beings whose nooks get flooded. And yet, we can't but celebrate its milder cousin, rain.

Rain songs
Rain songs Shutterstock

Monsoon Raga
Could a day
Be more 
Dull, flat, listless
Even pain seems frozen
The ache indifferent

Then, a peacock cry
Keening sounds echo
And echo again
Calling out to rain
To restore the world

If ever there was
A sound to gladness
This would be it

Frogmarch in Dharamshala 
It rained frogs in 
Dharamshala today
Or so they said

You can’t always
Believe what you see
Especially in the woods

But leaves glisten with
Hidden life
And unspoken songs
(should that be unsung)
Hover over a walk

I guess anything is possible
In a snail-eat-snail world

Pani Puri
A breathless orchestra
Swings betwixt hand and mouth
One saying more! more!
T’other crying, hold on!

Impossible clearly to articulate
You accept your pungent fate
As your leaf turns coracle

Of spicy green waters
And inexpressible bliss

Stormy sky, sudden downpour
A mischievous glint, a voice 
Akka, let’s go!

Like conspirators on the verge
We sneak out, each minute an hour
Till, safe from the all-seeing eyes  
Of our mutual grandmother
We hit the road running

Till we get to the tree, hoary
Arms wide, home to a dozen birds
Gnarled fingers reaching down to where we knelt
Gathering our annual treasure of rain-washed fruit

This colour of childhood, and lost cousinship
Only seen on a vendor’s cart now

(Lina Krishnan is an abstract artist and poet in Auroville. Her work has featured in literary journals, arts magazines and in nine anthologies of poetry.)