Interlitq is delighted to publish its poem in English for today (20.01.12), “Arrivals, Departures” by the Indian poet, Shanta Acharya, a contributor to Issue 8 of Interlitq
Filed under: Authors, Interlitq, Issue 8, Poetry, The International Literary Quarterly, Writing |
A bustling island from where dreams travel
the world. Laughter and tears spell
messages – individual, undecipherable
In an adrenalin rush of landing, take-off…
Destinations, hopes, flights, insights
cascade down the information board;
Passengers queue to check-in with their stuff.
Each greeting, farewell a scene from a film;
There is nothing new in our universe.
The woman in maroon, blue, her face half veiled,
the older man in a navy suit looks restless.
A few seats apart a young woman with child
in designer jeans, bejewelled, is lost in a book.
Nothing to suggest they might be related –
Like underground streams disappearing
for long distances without speaking.
Waiting at Baggage Claim I take for granted
the scenes opening before me as in an Advent calendar –
The conveyor belts move like waitresses
pregnant, in slow motion,
balancing their heavy plates of hors d’œuvres –
Suitcases of all dispositions and humour
revolve like dishes in a Chinese restaurant.
Who would have guessed brown came in
so many shades, or Indian features covered
a range as impressive as theHimalayas!
Travellers, old and young, the not so old,
not so young, and all ages in between
men, women, dark, fair, thin, fat,
tired, rested, grumpy, happy, tall, short –
Some faces light up with recognition,
finding what they were searching for.
Others practice to be patient as they wait
for a sign, a confirmation
of love, forgiveness, compassion.
About Shanta Acharya:
Born and educated in Orissa, India, Shanta Acharya won a scholarship to Oxford where she completed her doctoral thesis on Ralph Waldo Emerson in 1983. She was a Visiting Scholar at Harvard before joining Morgan Stanley Asset Management in London in 1985. She has worked in the asset management industry ever since and is the author of several books on the subject.
Her five books of poetry are Dreams That Spell The Light (Arc Publications, 2010); Shringara (Shoestring Press, 2006); Looking In, Looking Out (Headland Publications, 2005); Numbering Our Days’ Illusions (Rockingham Press, 1995) and Not This, Not That (Rupa & Co., India, 1994). Her doctoral study, The Influence of Indian Thought on Ralph Waldo Emerson was published by the Edwin Mellen Press, USA, in 2001.
Since 1996, she has been the founder director of ‘Poetry in the House’ at Lauderdale House, Highgate in London.