RAM KRISHNA SINGH

Collects all of my published poetry books. Also provides an uptodate view of my poetry, especially haiku and tanka.

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Ram Krishna Singh is a university professor whose main fields of interest consist of Indian English writing, especially poetry, and English for Specific Purposes, especially for science and technology. He was born on 31 December 1950 in Varanasi, India. Apart from a BA earned in 1970, he gained his MA in English Literature from Banaras Hindu University in 1972 and Ph D from Kashi Vidyapith, Varanasi, in 1981. He also obtained a Diploma in Russian in 1972. Dr Singh started his career in journalism, as a Compilation Officer in the District Gazetteers Department, Lucknow, 1973, and a Journalist with the Press Trust of India, New Delhi, 1973-74. Changing to teaching he became a Lecturer at the Royal Bhutan Polytechnic, Deothang, Bhutan, 1974-76. Joining the Indian School of Mines in Dhanbad as a Lecturer from 1976-83, he then rose to Assistant Professor in 1983 and full  Professor and Head of the Institute’s Department of Humanities and Social Sciences since 1993 to 2011. He is now Professor of English (HAG).

A reviewer, critic and contemporary poet who writes in Indian English, Dr. Singh is the author of more than 160 research articles and 175 book reviews. He has published 39 books, including:  Savitri : A Spiritual Epic (Criticism, 1984); My Silence (poems, 1985); Sound and Silence (edited articles on Krishna Srinivas, 1986); Indian English Writing : 1981-1985 : Experiments with Expression (ed., 1987, rept. 1991); Using English in Science and Technology (textbook, 1988, rev. and rept, 2000); Recent Indian English Poets : Expressions and Beliefs (ed. 1992); Two Poets: R.K. Singh (I DO NOT QUESTION) Ujjal Singh Bahri (THE GRAMMAR OF MY LIFE) (poems, 1994); General English Practice (textbook, 1995); Anger in Action : Explorations of Anger in Indian Writing in English (ed.,1997); My Silence and Other Selected Poems : 1974-1994 (poems, 1996); Above the Earth’s Green (poems, 1997); Psychic Knot : Search for Tolerance in Indian English Fiction (ed., 1998); New Zealand Literature : Some Recent Trends (ed.,1998); Every Stone Drop Pebble (haiku, 1999); Multiple-Choice General English for UPSC Competitive Exams (textbook, 2001); Cover to Cover (poems, 2002). Pacem in Terris ( haiku, English and Italian, 2003), Communication : Grammar and Composition ( textbook, 2003), Sri Aurobindo’s Savitri : Essays on Love, Life and Death ( Critical articles, 2005), Teaching English for Specific Purposes : An Evolving Experience ( Research articles and review essays, 2005), Voices of the Present: Critical Essays on Some Indian English Poets (2006), The River Returns (tanka and haiku collection, 2006), English as a Second Language: Experience into Essays (ed. research articles, 2007), English Language Teaching: Some Aspects Recollected (ed. research articles, 2008), Sexless Solitude and Other Poems (2009), Mechanics of Research Writing (2010), Sense and Silence: Collected Poems (2010),  New and Selected Poems Tanka and Haiku (2012), and I Am No Jesus and Other Selected Poems, Tanka and Haiku (2014). His works have been anthologized in about 160 publications, while his editorial activities extend to include guest-editing of Language Forum, 1986, 1995, and Creative Forum, 1991, 1997, 1998, besides being co-editor of the latter publication from 1987-90, General Editor of Creative Forum New Poets Series, and service on the editorial boards of Canopy, Indian Book Chronicle, Indian Journal of Applied Linguistics, Reflections, Titiksha, International Journal of Translation, Poetcrit, Impressions of Eternity (ie), and SlugFest. He has evaluated about 50 PhD theses from various universities. He has also edited the ISM Newsletter for about five years.

Monday, October 09, 2006

PEDDLING DREAM: SOME HAIKU



The sky couldn’t retain

all of the moon now entering

my house through windows


A star shines bright

beside the crescent moon:

she fakes a smile


Through the small windows

gaze at the moon hid behind

cloud after cloud


Shaking hands

couldn’t part with the henna

on her palms



Reluctant to climb

the spiral staircase--

bathing in kitchen



Measures loneliness

sip by sip

at dining table



From the alcove

removes faded flowers

and kills black ants



Thick dust on leaves

unwashed by rains for days--

stagnant time



Oleander and

hibiscus blaze with passion--

making love in sun



Post-lunch nap:

in the drawing room counts

beads of sweat



Two wolves smell

the carcass in field

heat wave chills



Summer vacation:

the noisy roomcooler pricks

my silence



Dust storm this evening--

end of the mango season

without tasting fruit



Throwing stones

at unripe mangoes--

two urchins



Couldn’t keep

freshness of leaf

in water



The first rains coming

back from the desert home-

plateau souvenir



One more empty day

but in the mailbox a hint

of hope tomorrow



Where shall I keep

the thirty years junk if

I go elsewhere?



A sad soul

under the mango--

my husband



In the well

studying her image

a hooker



Ending

the night’s long journey

her short story



Patterns of hair

block the flow:

flood in bathroom



Cooking smoke waves

to the afternoon sun:

ruddy backyard



Chilly night

no soul on the road

guard at gate



Welcoming the sun

dew drops on dry leaves--

an epitaph



After the walk

two women relax on bench

exchanging tensions



After cleaning

the maid leaves behind

an oily smell



A tiny spider

on the marigold sucking

its golden hue



Seeking its roots

around oleander leaves

custard-apple



A Christ crucified

with the violence of music

in the hall



After the party

empty chairs in the lawn

new moon and I



A dead voice

calling up at dawn:

drowsy eyes



Such a wild change

in the mirror beside her--

I look a stranger



Stoops to set

pleats of her saree

mid-August



Meeting her once and

so much love in one night

to last the whole life



Each sun aggravates

sadness moment by moment:

watching lonely street



Narrowly escape

the midair web of spider

perched on hibiscus



After extraction

he gives me my old tooth

list of drugs and new bill



A moth

struggling for life

on wire



Palms waving to greet

the first rain of the season:

I wait in the room



Craving for a lick

of the salt on her skin

to become one with her



Desire for diamond

dies with price I can’t afford:

curse astrologer



Wish I could be part

of the quietude this morning:

the sun’s so promising



Between virgin curves

he deep-breathes evening mist

rests in the hollow



A load of wood

on her frail back

autumn evening



Their shadows dissolve

and reappear walking

along the river



On a cycle

he sells bouquets and roses

peddling dreams



A watchman gazes

the stars on her body

elements clack



Alone on the platform

wait for the train

swatting mosquitoes



Summit of silence:

crossing the river-

feet dry



Scars of existence--

wintry sun and chilly night

crouching on footpath



A dead man

couldn’t keep standing--

lies in dust



Knocking emptiness

I cross the valleys within

now stand at stone gate



Love’s beauty

happening in the soul

God presence



Silence of class test

occasion for haiku thoughts

lost in lecture



To give voice to stone

he chisels the soul-image

Krishna plays the flute



A lamp on the river--

the breast in bridal grace

waving in the gloaming



In the spring sun

the lone pomegranate tree

smiling with buds



The blue-white dapples

on the canvass seeing

the eye of silence



The mirror is so small

I can’t see the ocean

beyond my own look



Silent Ram sheds

tears over the bodies burnt

in temple’s name



Violence breeders

climb power ladder--

peace stings



Tears invisible

on his water face

Buddha meditates



Through long shadows

in the morning remembering

gradual death



After the ‘plane bomb’

stuck between concrete rubbles

a mother and child



In the naked grave

some flesh still clings to the bones:

flies drone the last breaths



Lost in black box

he searches love to live--

smoulders in ash



They still bomb

lands for peace repeat

August 6



They kill and hide

in mosques pray, in fear

kill more, and flee



To hunt the hunters

flames mate with flames--

touch the sky



Her presence--

alien sensation

in my veins



In my courtyard swoop

neem, peepal, cheeku leaves:

autumn’s ballet



Between her fingers

and lips swaying

some puffed rice



Still fresh

in the hanky’s fold--

jasmine



Soft footsteps

of students bunking

class test



Her smile

arrival of spring

at the bower



A butterfly

restless over the other

trying to console



Ahead of us

racing hyacinths

in the river



Two lizards

inside the switchboard

turned on



Two of us

at the waterfall

spraying love



The whole night waiting

for the train running late

drowsy sunrise



The nightqueen fragrance

seeps in from the windows

my bedroom blooms



She snuggles up

in my arms her dimples

joy of heaven



Her birth--

a poem dancing

in the eyes



Swirling spiral

of her skirt spills tides of dream

and memory



Echoes of night song

flutter our embrace in bed:

rushing morning rays



Drowsy day

waning sex and love-

seasonal trick



Unattached--

drop of water on

lotus leaf



Baked and cracked

the sugarcane field

melts into mud



Receding

winter leaves behind

allergies



One more year

hanged with calendar-

a new god



Picking at a dead

frog on the road--

a crow



A crow picks at

cow’s back in the afternoon--

drooping rag-picker



Green velvet

from gate to door--

monsoon end



A moving train--

confined in water bottle

rhythmic ripplets



Two toads croaking

in the drain celebrate

sudden shower



Chased by a cat

a rat

sinking into the sand



Sculpturing psyche

in the city of dumb dreams:

idols sweat in sun



Elements clack

in the small house shudder

the harp and strings



God, the first victim

in the divided city:

one more house torched



Basking in the past

they grow backward and yet talk

about the future



Tattooed on her back

a nude exhibits a nude--

FTV model



Cut wrongly

each body a slave--

grey faces



Tainted tongues

weave mazes to stop

births of light



Continuing

after ejaculation--

anti-climax



Her wet lingerie reveals

more than her body--

I drown in her sea



A stray sperm

grows in the ovum

blooms as puffball



Winter chill--

her face grows

more wrinkles



I see a finger

point to the eye in her breast

mist lingers on lips



No letters today--

addresses of his dead friends

greying in diary



With changing weather

they look for sun and shade both:

chameleon tune



She resents

remembering allah

in her car



In the class test

etching nudes on the desk

two late comers



Night bombing

oleander garden

white as death



Vultures waiting for

the remains of sacrifice

on the temple tree



Seeking for

the white of the sky

in your closed eyes



It’s still overcast

fumes rise from smouldering ashes--

terrorists’ attack


On the marble grave

mating sparrows celebrate

peace in cemetery



So much night

around the street light-

no one’s safe



Heat wave burns and blows

the withered nests whole night

birds wail searching for shades



In the AC room

last night’s coldness continues:

outside summer sun



Clad in swimsuit

her body in water sweeps

waltzing ripplets



He sees the world

through the light of the body

with single eye



Lingering in bed:

to go to church or pub--

Sunday morning



Bedside--

our night clothes

await washing



It still lingers like

the taste of stale love last night:

man and mask one



Joy of union

reduces as rhythm falls:

restless embers grow



She hides the mirror

with rose and lipstick

and keeps her fiction



Reshuffling the shelves

it’s only dust, in alleys

sneezing scholarship



Gentle breaths prick

cheek and chest unclinging

looking away



We come together

to make love against the wall--

harvest for no one



She undresses in

dim light perfumes her body

fills room with herself



Love waves rise and fall

between our shores of soul

drinking each other’s sea



Shouting at her--

the breakfast aggravates

fire in the throat



The lone mushroom--

a pregnant woman

stares out of the window



After dinner

leaves a freezing banana

on the bed



Moving shadows

in the silence of the room--

windows rattle



Hungry eyes

rest on their graffiti

on the desk



Face hidden

at the window hear

known voices



Facing the sun

the lone flower

dying to bloom



After the sunset

wheels of a returning cart

along the paddy



Unmoved by the wind

he sits on a rock wearing

peace of the lake



Unable to see

his pale shadow reeling through

vapour of the earth



Night washes the sky--

the sun brings morning freshness

to my window



After days

of depressing rains

golden orb



Her frisky bounce

like snakebird springing its head

in water preying



Her eyes flash in dark

the eel slides into her cave

I watch the mirror



They take off again

their unthrown nets frighten fish--

water turns whiter



Storms circling within

love is vision in action

blue dot in deep space



Sound turns fainter

with greying geometry

a rusted sign



Hope in hidden words

the invisible essence

nearer dawn’s glory



The mountain doesn’t know

the river flows through its skin

now stains memory



Filling

emptiness of the room

with ikebana



A fly flying

in IC 809

free of cost



On a sheet of ice

the chick trying to free itself

from its mother’s claws



Two souls celebrate

sailing on flames of white light

new millennium



The lone hibiscus

waits for the sun to bloom:

morning’s first offering



Rain-soaked sun

sheds its sultry light--

her bare back



Dew drop

on a blade of grass

rainbow



A child’s fingers feel

the butterfly lying

one with yellow leaves



Shell-shocked or frozen

he stands in tears on hilltop

craving nirvana



A dead leaf hangs

by a spider’s thread

invisible in sun



Staring at each other

two fishes in half-filled tank

ready for truce



All guests gone:

after the late party

night and I alone



Icy bed:

moving the pillow

closer to hers



Only two of us--

and a big house with roaming

rats and cockroaches



Under a tree

in meditation sunken:

a quiet stone



No god appears

in the dark of my closed eyes--

dream-image falters



The little toddler

with her fey appearance:

a woodland sprite



Seeking good news

I watch the lines on my palms

taking new turns



We meet again

in the album ever fresh

her memory



Waving arms of trees

conspire with overcast day

to drench again



Tending the hooks

she blushes to see

the line of jewels



The half moon

on her neck reminds of love

before departure



Her trilling laugh

on the phone--

spring love



Chess of love:

checkmate before

playing the game



Falling leaves--

a sheet of autumn

in the courtyard



They all look for

a little more moon coming

back from movie



Waves of mist shine

with sun the day resumes

laughter shakes each bough



Fearing allergies

he misses full moon party

savours white light



After morning walk

the trio gossip each day

fresh revelation



The holy Ganges

tolerates the city’s garbage

even rape and death



Greeting the first rains

after months of soaring heat--

the lone mango falls



Exploring the world

in haiku silence God

an event



The string of life

lost in the knots of small things:

living tragedies



Sweeping gelled leaves

they raise dust in my compound

agitate windpipe



The lone letter box

rusting in rain for years

none come to open



Prolonged rains keep

dahlias from blooming--

seeds die again



Shining on rose-leaves

silken layer of dew drops:

gloss of her mauve smile


Chilly wind slaps

the window panes closed to keep

cross-legged couples warm



Cloud over cloud

darken earth and hide stars:

dawn and dust one



Red oleander and

hibiscus calling morning

to Kali



Making love

she presses with her nails:

sparrow sports



After lunch

stretching legs in cubby-hole:

a frog

______________________________________________________________


Copyright: R.K.SINGH

First published in a trilogy collection, Pacem in Terris (Trento, Italy: Edizioni Universum), 2003. Also, translated into Italian in the same volume.

6 Comments:

Blogger Robert Pullman said...

I tried to read this but there were more lines of HTML code (!--[if !supportEmptyParas]-- !--[endif]--) than there were lines of poetry.

7:36 AM  
Blogger Matilda said...

I couldn't read all of this, but I loved what I could read. Your haikus are wonderful. Do you write in English, or do you translate it later?

5:00 AM  
Blogger R.K.SINGH said...

Hi, robert: I think now they have set right the html code and page is perfectly fine and readable. I too had been very worried about the problem as a reader.
Please do visit the pages once again and let's stay in touch.
R K

9:47 PM  
Blogger R.K.SINGH said...

Hi, matilda: I have been writing in English for the last four decades. I fail to translate my poems from English to Hindi.
They have removed the html code and the pages are perfectly readable. Please do visit the blogs again and enjoy reading my verses. Thanks
R K

9:49 PM  
Blogger hifidel said...

I've been reading through and enjoying your material. It's great you've posted your collections here for readers.

Thanks for the invite you left at my other blog. I've bookmarked you and will be back to read more.

hifidel (poetically challenged, at the other site)

3:36 AM  
Blogger R.K.SINGH said...

Hi, hifidel: Thanks for taking note of my work and bookmakring me. I await your fresh response one of these days, even if you consider yourself poetically challenged. If you enjoy reading 'poetry', you are just as good as I am.
All the best
R K

10:22 PM  

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