Literary Shelf

Vivid and Vibrant - 9

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HRK is a unique individual as seen in his profile underneath.  Human life and human dignity is not held as the most important in our society.  “Isms” comes and ‘isms’ go but humanity, tenderness, compassion and understanding the commoner’s tribulations are not seen as they should be seen.  Hence the anguish and wrath of this poet.

Whoever would not love a flower!

When you see a flower
Tell me what you feel
What price if what you said
Never think of what you would get
Were you feeling very hungry
That is a morsel of race, your lotus
Then in the room of your mind
A friend dead long ago restlessly moving
Asking pressingly as to what happened to us
Is he making you grief stricken
Why doubt
Memory of your friend’s death, your flower
Then in your village the banyan drooping branches
Tie round one branch round your neck
Getting respite from all grief
Deliverance errant the last breath
Then and endless cry of grief is your flower
What is caste, what is faith, religion
The one loved boldly
A young man half cut slaying head
Thinking that you would clear the due of your blood
Did you pursue don’t be afraid
Hereafter, that courageous young man head is your flower
Flower not only for the hair of your lady love
Not the bouquet given to a officer
To twist to make perfume to daube on your body
Grieving for the dead friend,
Again and again for the farmer’s neck in the hanging noose
It is also the villain’s sharp sword that cuts off the caste too


The window grasping is carefully using the sunshine is cease today
To the extent possible giving lights for the green trees
The selfless friend, the window glass pain
See how she spread the life and shade picture
What I say is just one
We should see only when it is there
One should see thinks as they are
A flower is a flower
An insect
In the art gallery you stop yet
The one thing that attracts you most
When there is nothing saved
Where is the space for losing any more
In the sunshine
With what remains
Getting the window pain get is that left
Tying wheels to feet, making hands oars
Going anywhere as per your wish
In the very place are in
You can create the earth and sky
Wiping the wetness on the head
With the touch of the star
You can see your picture
In the window panes’ mirror
You can realise that all pictures are one
You can go when you wish
You can go head without limits of cosmos
And return again
The places are you in is not a small by any count
This two is your cloud in the universal dust
What remains here is netter
Drink before death comes

HRK is an acronym used as pen name in Telugu. Let it go so in English as well. Hrk was born in October 10, 1951 in a backward peasant family, in a village called ‘Gani’, in Andhra Pradesh. Went to Vijayawada and Visakhapatnam to study B. Sc and M. A. caught up with Communist Revolutionary politics as a student. Worked as a ‘whole timer for up to 11 years. Finding the strategies of the party untenable, left the party (not the ideology, though) and worked as working journalist in Udayam and Eenadu for 16 years. Hobnobbed with voluntary organisations for another 6 or 7 years. He now lives with his daughter in USA as a permanent resident. He published 12 anthologies of poetry, two volumes of literary criticism and a collection of short stories. Now he runs an online magazine called in Telugu.  

Rivers usually are life givers and life sustaining. Mothers they are of existence. River Champavathi plays havoc and wrecks, and wreaks destruction and vengeance of helpless people. People dread this more than adore her. Still people have gratitude for this river and poets pay obeisance to her.

I would Pay Obeisance to the River

From time immemorial
It has been a life your
As dreams and streams
As branches and branches
With grace and demeanour
It is a life stream
From mountains and rocks
From wilds
From life time immemorial
Spreading as grains and grains
Crossing sand beds
Over pilgrimage spots
As witnessed to fourth entries
The river has grown civilised
I pay homage to the rivers
On the person of farm lands
Becoming a seed, it sprouts
In the nights over my village mountain
Are heard her musical sound
Though after many years it becomes a handful of cooked rice
They stand in my hand cups
What happened to my river like a full-grown lady carrying a babre
Now cut down mercilessly
Freedom like a hewn tree
The river giving as life sustaining water
Suddenly turned an internal river
From the womb is oozing puss
The river that use to quench our thrust
Is spending moments of wild thrust
The river which passed by the shore
After civilisation became a migrant
Water in ponds and lakes dried
Lives are being lost
Water reach us to be raised to the head with devotion
From the sand the closer use it to squeeze water drops
In the seasons where the mud made cooked rice
In the empty cloud plots
Are not able to get water to cooked rice
In the spots where water gave rest and comfort
We have to gather only mud
Even then, water is water
I am water you me and all of us
Life is water too
Ever always worshipful is water
Either from first 11th of August
Or the festival of planting
We should bow deep falling on our chest
At least once in twelve years (pushkaram) we have to bathe in the sacred river
Anyway, we should pay obeisance to the river

Note: On the first 11th day, Sjuddha Ekadasi in July we hold a festival for cultivation

No Words

Even in handshakes now, newly there are no words to speak
No conversations
All the emotional words after the walls are blackened
What is there for you to talk about
Even in the faces you see now
There is no newness
Everyday into the four-inch wall
When your face is nailed  
Even your face has lost its colour
Deep desires and worries
All when portioned in Zuckerberg stage
What is left
For partition
After first meeting, after courtesy word,
Where is the subject for conversations?
Isn’t it the simple of living
Only the touch of the first hand-shake?
Are’nt not the sand he embraces
The only simple of flower
All the sounds in the vocal cards
When turn into letters on the palm
Now who meets who anywhere
Appear like a new letter
Till I make a metal finger
The absence of sound becomes a circle around me
Time sometimes with new interpretation
Stands before me
Words are covered with snow

Bandla Madhava Rao is a poet, critic and educationist.  He has three collections of poetry.  He is a co-writer with his teacher Papineni Sivasankar in write Kavita and Bhumikha.  He won awards in Srujuna Sahitya Puraskaram, Guntur Rythu Sangam Puraskaram.  He runs Shikara School in Vijayawada.

Children are loved, adored and made much all along that angelic age.  Persons who take to action on the stage surprise while seeing them on the stage or the theatre after a while. The poet SVR Sastry gives expression of his feeling when he in sees himself as a ‘player’. The poets differ in their views on play-acting with faced daubed and acting.  

In Both Hands

Under the open fingers in both the hands
The little one covers her face
‘Who am I’?
Asks she.
For the very same query of Sr Rama
Sage Vasistha replied
As he recorded his Yoga Vaashistha
The very question
Digging deep his mind
Sri Ramana became Ramana Maharshi
He said ‘What can I say!’
I know not” I remembered and said
“I cannot say!”
She laughed aloud
And looked at me as one saying ‘I don’ know’.
I was defeated
For the little one winning
She said telling me who I am
I was gleeful!


Observing, staying away from the past
I don’t remember when I got up the stage
Daubing colour
Wearing a hood to cover my face
Whenever I played my role
I used to get greeted: “Once more!”
Coming home as I undressed,
I used to save that for my next performance
Many have been playing their parts
While seeing them they are playing likewise
When I looked at myself in the mirror
I realised that no face is mine.
Sitting alone
Peeling off like the skin of the onion
When I went on opening
I used to find matter
Without colour, taste or smell
A kind of emptiness
Without love, affection and myness
Is seen there
From then on …
I’ve been searching all along
For a face full of feeling.

S.V.Ramasastry (b.1961) worked  in Syndicate Bank in various places. He is a poet and painter, painting pictures drawing high praise. He has IIM degree besides his collegiate degree.  He published three volumes of Telugu poetry. A newspaper described him as Kavitaachitram, a portrait of poetry.  He lives in Tanuku. Mobile no’s: 9866458290 and 9493848455

Not all women poets are ‘feminists’ as that term has come be regarded with disdained if only sometimes. Here is a poet who feels the disdain heaped on husbands in some households. A woman as a daughter, sister, wife and mother in various stages of life is not always given the love, respect or affection in various situations, in different instances.  “Destitution” has to be understood at the various conditions it is felt.

Song of Mud

Clearing the throat
Look up at the sky
Thinking that you would sing a welcome song
The cloud sank in darkness weights
Thinking all these days waiting for her song
Into the busy activity of parrots
The sad news appears to have been covered in the season
On the tree hanging on the body of the farmer
A song wet with snow the whole night
The sad one grieves
Who is loveless, the song or the farmer
Rough voices
Taken to group discussions
Are conducting post-mortem
To the dreams of those going to be buried
Who is destitute?  The farmer or the dream?
Next the very same discussion
“Is mud which says in herself the tree is the destitute
There comes a sound from somebody in at the back
If the one who thinks of a mother is not there
If the farmer like the son goes
The noise of the farmers in her heart,
Is the mud a destitute?
On the body of mud
Which saved in herself the farmer
On the body of the mud
Another song sprouted
Come let us save the mud at least from perishing!?

The Heart’s Grain of Boiled Rice

What is there as the beginning
When thoughts disturb the mind
She makes her hands as if cleansing the floor with a rag
Only when all went to sleep or yet to sleeping
Or might have gone on some work
Or when standing on the weighing machine to check the weight
Whether the weight is measurable
Or whether they are measuring numbers
Heavy feet and eyes becoming rivers flow
Who boils like rice in the rice on the stove
Why those memories
Waving like thorns when she is laughing
The saree to take of to go out with her hubby
Widening the blouse at the arms
To fix the measurement to the boundaries of her body
And to put the blouse in its place
She plays a painful Olympic
When she looks into the mirror the smile on her
When she sees the picture of their wedding
The smile of her husband the…
She felt insulted miserably
As if someone asked her to drain the water from the pot of cooked rice
In the night at dinner time
Placing all items on the plate for her hubby and kids,
The husband shouted:
“Nowadays where is your mind going? The rice is not well cooked, I brought old rice Why are the grains so hard!?”
He doesn’t know that in the grain of that cooked rice, her heart is there!!!

Mercy Margaret (b.1983), has M. Com M B A degree and has experience in insurance and IT Cognizant and teaching experience in several colleges. Now she is working in Bharat PG College for women. Got awards from Kendra Sahitya Akademy in 2017, besides Awards in 20015, 2016 and 2017 from various institutions.

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More by :  Dr. Rama Rao Vadapalli V.B.

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