Autumn Muse

(Kashmir Valley)

Under the Chinar tree the shadows can
now map the contours of tiny cruelties,
screen every breath but the Jhelum river
with its soft palms crumbles the mystery
and silence one by one.

The deadly real and sublime fantasy
infect each other over the years
and there are no whole stories,
yet it’s a place of solace for the
survivors counting years and centuries.

Behind the mountains the light is
spreading and the ageing valley is
baked into a libretto,
red and purple flowers drink
the morning blood in mystic silence!
white lilies in the Dal lake
resonate only the solitude!

Every stone is a story teller in Lalchak
and stubborn enough to talk about
the empty nest of the birds, bullets
and unbelievable sobs

The autumn wind drums in the night
in repressed anger and in the distance
the stars bunch on the very edge
of the bank lulled by the swash
and welters of the falling leaves.

Gopal Lahiri was born and grew up in Kolkata, India. He is a bilingual poet, writer, editor, critic and translator and published in Bengali and English language. He has authored seven volumes of poetry in Bengali and nine volumes in English and jointly edited one anthology of poems in English. His poetry is also published across various anthologies as well as in eminent journals of India and abroad. He is the recipient of the Poet of the Year Award in Destiny Poets, UK, 2016. He can be reached at Read other articles by Gopal.