Hungry Breakers

So long eyes can see, only the sinking dinghy,
gathers wave-life motion and turbulences,
the crescent moon needles the night, hungry breakers
devour the boat and the lonely fisherman.

The roll call is enlivened by the names-
shining fishes, the muskrats and dragonflies bring
childhood, images and longings,
and settle down to sleep at the end.

The river turns inward to hide the history,
burrow plants dig mud beneath the water column,
weft into red silt and brown clays,
barrel down day and night by the distributaries,

Fine grained sand buries old memories on the
riverbed, broken terracotta horses plug fissures,
seize battering days, mapping-
the engaged, the missing and the given depth contorts.

Gopal Lahiri is a bilingual poet, critic, editor, writer and translator with 29 books published, including eight solo/jointly edited books. His poetry and prose are published across more than seventy journals and anthologies globally. His poems are translated in 16 languages. He has been nominated for Pushcart Prize for poetry in 2021. He has received Setu Excellence Award, Pittsburgh, US, in poetry. He is the first recipient of. Jayanta Mahapatra National Award for Literature, 2024. Read other articles by Gopal.