Sunday, 26 January 2020

The Lake

The afternoon was warm, the leaves stood still
basking in the escalating sun
The lake a tranquil sight, but only until
in tossed a pebble, and there it begun

There it begun, a gentle ripple across its surface
a wave giving rise to yet another
beating to a rhythmic pace
each soaring above the other

The lake was no river, else it would have tossed it away,
gushing on with an ignorance
The lake was unaccustomed to this breaking violent way 
it shivered unguarded with no defense

As you touched the center of my heart, the lake
it quivered with a feeling so queer
As you shook it with waves of a quake
shaking it with thrill and fear

The ripples died down, but the lake waited
it knew it wouldn't remain the same ever again
Just like I know our meeting is fated
the lake too waited patiently for a summer again.

- Niharika Prasad

Wednesday, 25 December 2019

I Wish...

I wish I was the first dawning
to arouse you from a deep slumber
Rising in intensity like sun rays
a tender warmth across your face.

I wish I was the water
to glide freely into your palms
Hastily in the fear of loss
a splash of gentle freshness.

I wish I was the dew studded grass
to tickle your bare feet
Teasing with prickly edges
rekindling a lost dream.

I wish I was the air
to linger around you for just a moment
Just one breath of air
unnoticed and yet essential.

              - Niharika Prasad

Friday, 6 September 2019

Stronger Alone

You lay my heart on a slab of ice
To quiver like a pale leaf, in late autumn sky
Like a crystal broken more than twice
It lay frozen, forced to comply.

Its pace just slowed with passing time,
As it lay in a casket of stiffened veins
The pain inexpressible in prose or rhyme,
Bound in memories worse than chains.

Wringing my heart of every emotion,
You made me as cold as stone
As it lay paralyzed without a motion,
I realized I was strongest when alone.

I am strong because I have been weak,
I am wise because I have been a fool
Fearless because I have been meek
You exalted me to such power, 
now I shall rule.

- Niharika Prasad

Thursday, 30 May 2019

देवों के देव महादेव, हे शिव।

मानव ने पार की ऊंचाईयां अनेक, किन्तु उनमें बचा एक शेष है,
बर्फ़ की परतों से ढका है कैलाश, रहस्यमय उसका वेश है। 

मानसरोवर के पार, कहानियों का वह स्रोत,
कल्पित देवों का जैसे वहाँ निवास हो। 
चमचमाता जैसे कोई दिव्य अमनजोत,
गुप्त जिसका पूरा इतिहास हो। 

उन्हीं गहराईओं में जहाँ कोई ना पहुंच पाया,
मानव क्या, जहाँ रोशनी की हर किरण भी हिचकिचाए,
उस घोर अंधियारे में, एक ही है साया,
जिसके प्रत्येक चरण से, संपूर्ण कैलाश काँप जाए।                               

रक्त के सागर में ,एकाएक भंवर उठ आया,
महाशक्तिमय ने कुछ ऐसा ताण्डव मचाया,
बलिष्ठ शरीर पर लिए, नागों का साया 
नागभूषण, नटराज, संछिप्ततया मुस्कुराया।

एक प्रतिबिंब, है,या अद्भुत एक स्वप्न,
आक्रोश के भंवर से प्रकट 
भैरव रूप में, प्रकट क्यों त्रिलोचन ?

बिखरे जटाओं में सर्पों की फुफकार है,
कैलाशनाथ के राज्य में क्यों आज ये हाहाकार है ?
देवों के देव, महादेव, तू तो पालनहार है,
लोकांकर है तू , फिर क्यों ये विनाश है ?

- निहारिका प्रसाद 


Saturday, 20 April 2019

Just as...

Just as a sliver of moon waits uneasily at the daybreak,
waning to let the sun command the sky.

Just as glistening dewdrops slide down fresh blades of green,
making it seem that the rains did just weep and sigh.

Just as tiny crabs burrow, creating sandy bubbles on the beach,
betrayed by the mighty frothing tide.

Just as countless silvery scales stuck to nylon fishing nets,
the morning catch, reflecting a fisherman's pride.

Just as the grittiness of sand stuck in the web of my toes,
fresh reminiscent of my walk at the teach

Just as this anaphora, my heart races back to you
your memories entwine me, just as you fade out of my reach.


                                                                                                         - Niharika Prasad

Wednesday, 16 January 2019

The Edge

Those eyes trapped between thick lines of kohl, frigidly stare
But yet glued to the screen.
Those eyes tire with the glare
But are possessed by a power unseen.

A hundred emoticons fast as a pulse
Yet none stir her expression less face,
Nor, was there a moment of impulse
As she typed with a practiced pace.

She did not not notice as a breeze blew her curls,

Nor when the screen blurred her eyes,
She was busy abbreviating her words
Finding solace in a world of lies.

He painted a rosy escape, dragging her to the edge,

The edge of an abyss, an abyss of his love.
His words lifted her, prepared to fledge
Far away from the chaos above.

The breeze failed to stir a single ripple in the abyss

She dreamt of gliding through it
Soaking in its bliss;
For as long as fate would permit.

She waited on that very edge, where she was told to wait

The edge, where her heart beats too fast.
She curls her toe, undaunted by fate 
His love, she knew, would have it recast.

                                                 - Niharika Prasad

Saturday, 2 December 2017

Not In Stone,But In Life

Through the multitude and noise, I hurried up the stairs,
They say in one of the most pious of your claimed abodes.
Swiftly pushing a few, but without interrupting my prayers,
I watch the head priest, the blessed one, as the theory holds.

I almost stumble as I catch my breath, giant lamps glimmer far away,
I rush past pestering beggars,but stopping at a second thought.
Suddenly scared, at remembering what the elders say,
Blessed is he who donates at this holy place,as always I have been taught.

I watch in awe from the indefinite queue, I peep to catch a glimpse of you,
I sigh then continue my chants, repeating a complex hymn.
Words that I could barely pronounce,but ones they claim you well knew.
I pressed my face against golden bars,I was so short and the light so dim.

Hundreds of lamps fed on pure ghee, lighted up my way
Decorated plates with colored powders,all left me amazed.
The men in saffron took it all,piling it all, far from where you lay,
I strained my neck to where my mother pointed,to the God they all praised.

As i neared your shrine, my feet felt uneasily wet,
I saw some pour milk on you,which formed little streams on the muddy floor.
Hungry faces of the poor outside haunted me, I would never forget,
I clutched to a box of sweets, feeling guilty as never before.

I knew you'd tell me the truth, I leaned closer to have a look,
True to my imagination, I saw idols dressed in silk and jewels,
But your face so expression less,while a hefty man,offerings he took,
You did not even notice him,as louder and louder he rang the bells.

Your devotees seemed spellbound, few almost stamped me under their feet,
I called out for your help, but you still stared far ahead.
I dashed the other way, stopping only at the temple street,
Little beads of cold sweat, cooled down my spinning head.

Down the street I saw few kids,one glaring at my box of sweets,
He stared at me a little scared,his eyes met mine.
I stretched out my box, apologizing to gods on golden seats,
His eyes widened with a sparkle; could mortal be divine?

Not in stone,but in life
Not in chants,but in deed
I close my eyes, whenever I find myself in a strife
Image result for meditating
You,a part of indeed.

-Niharika Prasad