राही बन, मंज़िल जान, रास्ता चुन! / Know the destination, choose the road and then walk!

Not sure if I can do a justifying translation to this Hindi poem. It’s Gist being –

Roads never decide the destination nor who walks on them.

Remaining content to one’s limitations also does not make one a traveller.

And though many choose to travel, they remain unknown about the destinations and even the roads to take. They gamble their guesses, hoping it will take them somewhere!

Who really knows what they wish to live for and know the direct way which leads them to it!

Everyone here seems to be on the roads; aimlessly, unknowingly, they just walk on whichever road seems ahead.

The end of life is also a journey, which is the same as lived so far. Ignorant one came, immature one remained. And kept walking towards darkness. Are in fact searching light, this also remained misunderstood!

रास्तों ने कब तय की मंज़िल

या फिर मुसाफ़िर चुने ।

घर बैठा भी तो राही नहीं बनता ।

चलते भी तो बहुत है,

न ख़बर राह की न मंज़िल की,

भटकने को भी चलना माना ।

कौन जानता है मंज़िल,

और चुन सकता है,

सीधा रास्ता उस तक ।

यहाँ तो सब मुसाफ़िर है,

बेवजह के, बेख़बर रहें

अन्त भी वही यात्रा है

जो जी ली अब तक,

अन्जान ही आए, नादान ही रहे,

और चलते रहे

बस अन्धेरे में

रोशनी को ढूँढ रहें है

यह भी न समझे ।

©️दीप्ति विश्वनाथ

भीड़ चाल / Walking with crowds

भीड़ में चलने वाले

भीड़ में रह जाते हैं

जगत तो विस्तार है

पर जो हटे भीड़ से

वही यह जाने ।

Those who walk in crowds

Remain with crowds

That the world offers a vast

Expanse of experience

Gets known

Only to those

Who dare to walk

Away from the crowds.

~ Deepti Vishwanath

She is a will!

‘Tis the simple joys

That warmed her heart

For no reason

A wave

Of air or water or hand

Are caresses she cared.

She jewelled with the smiles,

From all the known, unknown.

She wore an eternal spring on her.

Her shoes of fluid clear waters

Making her gait swift, definite,

Also delicate.

Bright, effervescent, yet sensitive

The rose of her demeanour.

Untouched by the swift moods

When in clouds,

She rarely became pale

her inner sight transparent.

They say, she is a dream!

I say, she is a will!

©️Deepti Vishwanath

Mind

Bounces like a ping pong;

Needs to be pushed up,

And more low than high.

Swings like a pendulum,

From a past left to a future right

Oscillating relentlessly

Soaks like a sponge,

All that it is sens-ational,

Imagining more than real.

Clings like a creeper,

To the tree of the known.

Hooked to hope of a sweet fruit.

Fickle, impulsive, insecure, attached.

What do I say,

About you, O Mind!

You tie a ‘me’ within you!

©️Deepti Vishwanath

Pic – courtesy web space.

Awake

Wild is her nature,

Not willing to be tamed.

She travels everywhere,

Without any aim.

Restless is she,

To live it all.

No care for future,

Nor a clinging past.

Carries no remorse,

Nor ambition in her.

Bright she wears always,

an ever smiling face.

Her ensemble, her virtues.

A Generosity bag in her hand.

Spring in her gait,

on her way

She befriends all.

No malice, no ego.

She stands very tall.

She lives a dream,

With a light.

Awakening within herself!

©️Deepti Vishwanath. January 2019

Fly Past

Birds I see in the sky,

a rainy afternoon.

Wet and chirpy,

flying freely by.

Circling, but high above!

Looking down

ever now and then.

With a glee in their manner,

Telling me to join them.

To Abandon the secure – dry, lands.

And warn me,

“No, No. don’t take a plunge!”

Instead “fly high!” They say,

Towards the limitless sky.

And view behind also

Like them,

Ever now and then;

To lure another one.

To escape the ‘grounds’

For the skies!

Join the birds.

Flying high and past

Leaving the ephemeral Grounds.

For the Real skies.

©️Deepti Vishwanath. January 2019.

Destiny

You choose your destiny

With the choice you make today

I chose my destiny

By letting you choose for me!

You be responsible for your choice

I be, for my fate.

My friend!

What is there to grieve now?

For life,

Flows only forwards

Leaving us with the reap

Of our own cultivation!

©️Deepti Vishwanath. January 2019

Travel

Ridges in the mind

We take a walk in

Bridges of the objects

With the subject

Through the rough roads

Unpaved, bumpy etches

Of memories.

Some smooth pavements,

But far and few.

The pleasant experiences,

We run among them,

Finding a way out.

And all the roads

Seem so twined.

With fruits seen hanging

Here and there,

Always in reach

But, an inch away.

The maze woven. More intricate

With the carriage ride

Reaching nowhere.

Ending with the starting point.

Travelling in the ridges

Tired now, then refreshed again

Hope adding the fuel.

To reach a dead end again!

Traversed for eons now.

Hither. Where is the exit?

©️Deepti Vishwanath (Jan 2019)

Gamble

Aha! So. Many roads you see?

From this point onwards,

And each with many lanes

and by-lanes,

Not knowing which goes where,

What turn to take.

No sign boards ahead or

From above.

How do you know

Where to go?

Midway the highway

Stop you cannot.

Not rest by the side.

For how long after all!

Oh! The push and speed from behind.

The honk and the crank.

The noise from all!

They know where they go?

Follow who then I?

Is life then, only a gamble?

Mind. Such are your lanes.

©️Deepti Vishwanath

Some Why’s?

Body lit on pyre

What truth it tells?

The end is certain

And known.

Why then? Does living seem eternal?

That to accommodate, to forgive, to forget

To laugh, to hug, to be light

Seems so difficult!

Why does human not remember that end is certain,

and

Why does he not live with this memory?

Why does human pride his ignorance?

Why does human divide as me-mine, you-yours?

Why can compassion not be cultivated as a universal value?

Why can kindness not be compulsory?

Why can injury caused to lesser expressions of life be allowed?

Why are values not a priority universally,

Irrespective of nationality colour creed gender!

Why are there so many religions?

When prayers are same! For happiness.

Some of the why’s my teacher said never to ask!

©️ Deepti Vishwanath

Empty slate

An empty slate,

To write each one

Their own fate.

Crayons of hands and feet,

Scribbling as they please.

Figuring out the sheet;

Maximise they squeeze.

To evoke that probable;

To avoid the disdain.

To try every possible,

To achieve the gain.

Empty slate the universe gave.

Gave the tools, to efforts save.

To feel, to plan, to change, to create.

Nature grant one to sate.

But, hid it subtle,

To allow us play.

Now each is trying;

To write something,

That unveils the pleasures.

To discover the treasures.

Success is the only measure;

Before the final D- day!

Alas! Then.

Empty thou comes and thy returns!

©️Deepti Vishwanath. 2019

Embracing Me

Embracing what is a better me

Why then?

O Dear Mind!, resist thee?

Forgiving, gentle, open and warm

Why then?

O Mind! You see them as harm

Trust the nature divine

It cannot but be fine

To love to heal to let the other be

It is for you, do not flea

The kindness, the care , the service

Is essential breath to life truss

Remember the base ever

However did the Moon shine?

It took and it gave and it glowed all the way!!

Thus alone is the way, O Mind!

Let me bloom to be a better Me!

©️Deepti Vishwanath. 2019

Homecoming

Let me find a home

With no bricks and walls

Not even faces or calls

There find no gnome.

To pick the light

Reflecting inward halls

Let me sit there

Which fills it here.

Leaving the city gates

Be where fullness awaits.

Let me find that home!

©️Deepti Vishwanath

Write a soft experience

What life experience is there,

But a write on sand where

Which nature will not help erase?

Is joy and grief really that afar?

they seem inseparably not apart?

Why then? Let nature do its part.

Write soft, gentle, free.

It forever will flee!

©Deepti Vishwanath

मैं कौन हूँ या फिर क्या हूँ मैं?

मैं कौन हूँ या फिर क्या हूँ मैं?

कौन सा प्रश्न है इन्में सही?

कहूँ मैं अगर…

निराकार आयाना हूँ मैं ।

क्या अब आप पहचानोगे मुझे?

आप अपना ही चेहरा

बदल बदल के देखोगे मुझमें!

तब तक … जब तक

अपने को निराकार नहीं देखोगे!

तब तक

बदल बदल के मुझे

अपने को ही देखोगे मुझमें ।

©️दीप्ति विश्वनाथ

Life

Life, as I mystify on your existence
You rule over me.
Chain me, anchor me.
Deep down in the soil under the water.
As much I want to float – like a lotus.
You encage me in a body,
as much I want to set free and fly past.
©️Deepti Vishwanath.
A poem scribbled on 10.5.1985.

From the balcony

Overlooking. From the balcony.

One sees

The hustle, the bustle,

The juggle, the struggles,

For a meaningful existence!

And I sit there,

Wondering!

If this is all it was!

Unsatisfied

By the gains and loss.

The whole vast universe

Is this it – all?

©️Deepti Vishwanath

Empty thyself.

How much has been collected?

And the end so near!

To empty it all,

Is there time enough!?

At the thin brink

Between life and Death;

I will be checked,

For what all did I bring back.

All that is collected so far,

Belongs to heather world!

Surely, it is going to be rejected;

While I enter through the thin door.

On this side

it all seems mandatory.

On returning home,

It is all but nugatory!

Wait!

Let me carry what I can carry home.

For all I see

Only myself is allowed to be.

But alas!

the frivolities are too heavy a baggage!

Accumulating I did not see!

Empty where now will it be?

©️Deepti Vishwanath

Beginning and End

In a beginning,

end comes along as a shadow.

In an end,

A beginning hides within.

Playing thus with each other only

Giving the impression

For us they are!

Companions seeking no another

We remain catching one or the other

In a sport the two play

A cycle of life….

Completing itself.

At every beginning and end,

With us feeling elated and dejected,

Their game culminates,

The tournament continues.

And we – falsely attribute

it as our beginning and end!

©️Deepti Vishwanath

Between no more.

Between life and death

Time is ours

No more no less.

To discover,

The undiscovered yet.

What objects and enjoyments are worth!

Now No more.

The Me is yet to be known!

 

Between two breaths,

Time is ours.

No more no less.

To turn over the chance,

To wilful choice.

Choosing the Ephemeral

Now no more!

 

Between sleep and sleep

The waking is ours.

No more no less.

To claim the eternal freedom.

A ‘Between’, when

NOW no more.

 

©️Deepti Vishwanath.

Masked

Every face is masked.

Oh! How many to each!

Yet, behind each, the many masks

Why is it the same in all?

The same insecurity, fear, anxiousness,

Attachment, aversions,

Greed, avarice, anger et all!

Amusing it is not. To hide

what is common to all,

We put on the mask.

Only hoping

To meet the one

who would see us

as we are!

Why must I put on the mask

When I am who you are!?

©Deepti Vishwanath

Silence

The clock ticks

Reminding of the movement

Set in motion

Under whose plan or will?

The rising Sun

Seen day after day

Eternal as though

A stark witness

To the movements herein

The rising waves,

Who impels them?

For whom do they rise and fall

Tirelessly

Sometimes graceful,

Other times not!

The hills, the lakes, the snow,

The meadows, the forests

Oh! So much … All in motion

How can life be finite?

When every aspect of it is infinite!

And Now, I hear the silence!

Between the two tick ….. tick!

Ah! The joy of Silence!

 

– Deepti Vishwanath

 

Spectator

For one day at a time

In time

A day passed another

Like soldiers marching ahead

I stand as a spectator

Hearing the drums

The monotony, yet firm

The uniformity

Taking the orders

Restricting them…

Obedient.. Choiceless… Voiceless

Do I see hopeless as well?

Time… The great humbler

If one is marching along

As a spectator,

Free.

– Deepti Vishwanath

The spotless mirror

I stood in front of a mirror.

The mirror was spotless!

But why was my image so hazy? I gasped!

Seeing myself through the many eyes;

Where are mine?

Stopped have I?

Seeing through my eyes!

My own being!

The mother, sister, wife, grand..whoever!

The Doctor, Artist, Writer, philosopher…. however!

The gender, age, caste, race.. whatever!

Seeing myself in a mirror,

The glass is spotless.

But not the image!

Who am I??

Through my eyes?

Mirror is spotless, but why is the image not clear?

Removing the colors

I started to remove the colours
from my vision,

And all the colours flooded in!

I then, held on to a colour,

The colour darkened so much,

It was no more The colour.

Also, all other colours disappeared!

I learnt a lesson.

Delight is not exclusive.

 

I saw birds flying

Freely in the skies

Chirping, quirking,

I held one!

It lost its joyful garbling voice,

Spoke only when prompted

And as trained,

I learnt a lesson!

Delight cannot be held.

 

I saw the waters,

Clear, gurgling, dancing, when they hit the rocks,

Hitting their highs sportively

I held some in a jar,

To carry with me its pristine clarity and quality.

It went quiet.

I learnt a lesson!

Delight cannot be bound.

 

I went to the mountains,

Trying to be one with them,

Danced around them,

Spread my arms to embrace them..

Oh! How majestic and strong!

Talked loud to them,

They echoed myself back

I learnt a lesson!

Delight is everywhere. Anywhere. Whenever I call it!

 

Sitting in my room, saw two flies

Playing with each other,

Oh! The joy!

And I said,

Why am I delighted?

It is they, who are playing!

And I learnt the most important lesson.

Delight is in Me! is Me!

It cannot be held!

It is not exclusive!

It cannot be bound!

It is everywhere, anywhere because of Me!

It is indeed, Me alone! 

 

 

© Deepti Vishwanath, Photo – Vishwanath Tekur

When a leaf fell

A yellow leaf on a branch

Saw the few yet green

Somehow did not see

The many that were yellow.

Knowing intuitively

and fearing,

It’s time has come –

For the Great Fall.

Wondered,

Am I ready for the call?

It looked only at the green leaves

envying their vibrancy

Why did I turn yellow at all?

The fall, is now inevitable,

It recognised.

The branch was thrusting it out.

The leaf so wanted to hold on,

But, alas!

The force was only from one side -the branch.

The yellow leaf pondered quickly,

Can I trust the air?

Will it take me to a place

Where I rest and be embraced

With warmth and no fear?

And it shuddered, when it wondered,

Should I surrender to the wind?

Or, Should I resist the wind?

A question it had no answer for.

Those already fallen could not reach the branch anymore,

and relate their tale of how it felt when they fell

And those on the tree, did not even suspect the fall.

And then,

It started falling…

And the yellow leaf suddenly realized,

The only resistance it could offer is the weight of its own self that it carried..

The wind was kind,

as the leaf dried up, weight gone..

It knew instantly..

it will survive, without the tree!

Merged with the soil, it will nourish the tree..

 

© Deepti Vishwanath.  Photo courtesy- Vishwanath Tekur

By the Ghats

By the ghat, standing I,

saw the river flow by.

Telling me tales of many a times

forlorn by us,

She remembers it all.

I turn to look at the people behind me,

busy, hustling, bustling…

in need to get somewhere,

go somewhere,

get something,

achieve something,

a rush!

Then, I took the plunge!

One last thing I did;

took the boat

to the other shore.

I stand here,

where I hear the tales from the river,

been eternally there,

of the same ceaseless hustles,

been eternally there,

I see on the other shore!

only, from the other end!

© Deepti Vishwanath

Dreams

Dreams, are you meant that I chase you,

or, are you chimeras meant to mislead?

Are you the guiding light

or, are you the blockages?

Dreams, are you separate from me

or, are you me?

If you are separate,

I can leave you or chase you.

But, if you are me, or even a part;

then what is your significance?

I see you clearly;

so, you cannot be me!

You can neither be a part!

You have no physiological role.

Arms, heart, head and all

have a part they play.

If I dream to live on moon,

amongst all the celestial living beings.

Where there is no hatred, no competition,

no jealousy, no malice,

where only compassion exists!

Love for all.

Where God is not used,

For every God damn excuse.

Where coolness of the moon is

in everyones’ nature.

Where the waters are pure,

refreshing the skin.

Where a gentle breeze,

teases it constantly.

And there is no fear.

Where giving is more important than taking;

where love is essential for survival;

where sorrow is not known;

and the galaxies echo back the laughter!

Dream!

The respite.

From this predominantly

disturbed world.

Here,

what I dream as real

is only a rare exhibit.

How do I chase you, O Dream?

Your premises are all false!

You are only a figment of imagination!

Ahhhhh!

The milk just spilled over the boiler!!

 

© Deepti Vishwanath

Photo credits : web space.

 

 

 

 

 

A Laugh and A tear

laugh and a tear

sat across the table

sipping from their cups

the experiences  each had.

the tear did not recognise what was there to laugh about

and the laugh tried hard. what was there to cry about!

each felt the other did not understand,

They exchanged their cups.

and guess what?

laugh still had his cup

and the tear his!