Poetry International Poetry International
Poem

Ashok Vajpeyi

THE EXCOMMUNICATED

From the heap of names, future and dried-up leaves
growing despair and incongruous childhood words
from tales entangled in time, darkness
verandahs and a rickety basket
what shall we offer
in our cupped hands, as a prayer?
 
Looking at the deeply etched lines in our empty palms
the unclear silence dried up on the lips
what can we offer to our God
who has deserted us?
 
We will keep waiting, window wide open
hover around the threshold of possibilities
dejected, we will look at
the blown-out lamps and dried-up flowers
we will sit in a corner
of a temple, aimless.
 
We will go out
like an uproar spreading
we will come inside
like silence.
 
Like an interpolated passage
expelled from holy scripture
where shall we go?

THE EXCOMMUNICATED

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THE EXCOMMUNICATED

From the heap of names, future and dried-up leaves
growing despair and incongruous childhood words
from tales entangled in time, darkness
verandahs and a rickety basket
what shall we offer
in our cupped hands, as a prayer?
 
Looking at the deeply etched lines in our empty palms
the unclear silence dried up on the lips
what can we offer to our God
who has deserted us?
 
We will keep waiting, window wide open
hover around the threshold of possibilities
dejected, we will look at
the blown-out lamps and dried-up flowers
we will sit in a corner
of a temple, aimless.
 
We will go out
like an uproar spreading
we will come inside
like silence.
 
Like an interpolated passage
expelled from holy scripture
where shall we go?

THE EXCOMMUNICATED

From the heap of names, future and dried-up leaves
growing despair and incongruous childhood words
from tales entangled in time, darkness
verandahs and a rickety basket
what shall we offer
in our cupped hands, as a prayer?
 
Looking at the deeply etched lines in our empty palms
the unclear silence dried up on the lips
what can we offer to our God
who has deserted us?
 
We will keep waiting, window wide open
hover around the threshold of possibilities
dejected, we will look at
the blown-out lamps and dried-up flowers
we will sit in a corner
of a temple, aimless.
 
We will go out
like an uproar spreading
we will come inside
like silence.
 
Like an interpolated passage
expelled from holy scripture
where shall we go?
Sponsors
Gemeente Rotterdam
Nederlands Letterenfonds
Stichting Van Beuningen Peterich-fonds
Ludo Pieters Gastschrijver Fonds
Hendrik Muller fonds
Lira fonds
J.E. Jurriaanse
Literature Translation Institute of Korea
Partners
LantarenVenster – Verhalenhuis Belvédère