Oblivion

Oblivion long poem

This face that I lift in my palms
so carefully, as if it is grains of sand,
shall someday slip through my fingers,
as if it is grains of sand.

but, for a moment, let me forget.

this face that I hold in my palms
so dearly, as if it is a drop of rain,
shall someday slide down my fingers,
as if it is a drop of rain.

but, for a moment, let me forget.

what the wind gives, it takes away,
sooner or later.

love is, but a drop of tear
in the end.

nothing lasts forever,
not even kisses
can build bridges across time.
but, for a moment, let me forget.

what does it matter?

you lie in my arms,
naked, trembling,

I lie in your arms,
naked, trembling,

we lie, in the center of this night,
this universe, with our lips locked, with our hearts locked
and that alone matters.

let me forget that
there was another woman, in another time.

let me forget what wasn’t
and what could have been.

what does it matter?

your breast is alive in my mouth
as fish, as water,
your waist is alive in my hands
as stones, as birds,
and that alone matters.

my love, there are all sorts of things
outside our love, that insist and insist.
there are secrets, there are seashells as lovely as your ears,
there are messages written on leaves,
there is dust swimming in the sunbeams,
there are songs begging to be written,
there are battles to be won and lost,
there are castles to be built,
with air, with fear for the day to blow away.

but, for a moment, let me forget.
but, for a moment, let me forget.

here, on the bed of the night,
I have no greater desire
than to just lie next to you.

here, on the bed of the night,
i have no greater ambition
than to stroke you, as a father,
as a brother, as a lover, as a god,
to just stroke you to sleep.

here, on the bed of the night,
between mouth and mouth, i have known love.

so, let me forget.
for a moment, let me forget.

my love, tonight, my heart lies all spread out
as the skies, and it wants you to come floating
as the clouds.

my love, tonight, my heart lies wide open
as the seas, and it wants you to come dancing
as the boats.

come, my love,
hand in hand, let’s enter this silence
we have given birth to.

this is no ordinary silence.

this is not the silence
formed by distilling noise,
this is the silence
that gives birth to songs.

this is no ordinary silence.

this is not the silence of the sun
knocking on every pore in the body,
this is the silence of the moon
knocking from somewhere inside ourselves.

this is no ordinary silence.

this is not the silence of the city
as the horns rest,
this is the silence of the forest
when roots take time to brood
and birds save their energy for lovemaking.

this is no ordinary silence.

come, my love,
hand in hand, let’s enter this silence
that we have given birth to.
let’s build a nest inside it
and live as birds.
let’s make a cradle inside it
and rock for eternity.
let’s make a bed inside it
and make love all night.
but, let’s not say anything.
let’s not even say how beautiful it all is.
let’s not cause the slightest ripple
in the night’s ocean.

if there is a murmur,
let it be the murmur of bones.

if there is a whisper,
let it be the whisper of skin.

if there is a rustle,
let it be the rustle of endless caresses.

tonight, I don’t want to hear
anything stronger than a heartbeat,
anything weaker than a moan,
anything louder than a kiss.

forgive me, my love.

I have gone looking inside books and beards,
I have cast nets in the sky
and hooks in the ocean,
but, how was I to know?

as I walked along dark shores
posing question after question
at the stars and sand,
my love, how was I to know that
in the smell of your hair, you hold all the answers?

as i ran through street after street
screaming at children and beggars,
my love, how was i to know that
in the smell of your breasts, you hold the secrets
to soothe my anger?

as I flew from world to world
to taste unknown dangers, to fight unknown battles,
my love, how was I to know that
in the depth of your eyes, you hold all that is life and death?

as I searched and searched,
as I drilled mountains and dug earth,
my love, how was I to know
it was you I was searching for?

forgive me, my love.
but, I was someone who had to lose his way to find it.

like how the sea withdraws the waves
it promises,  there were kisses,
so cruelly withdrawn without a word.

like how the mountains answer us
with our own screams, there were unwritten letters,
so cruelly sent back, with my own silences.

but my love,
here, between your breasts,
my despair dissolves
and my desire dissolves.

here, between your breasts,
I have no more questions.
I feel no surge in my heart
or urge in my stomach.

here, between your breasts,
I could die without fuss.
I could die, without guilt, without complaints,
without anger or angst, without prayers or requiems.

here, between your breasts,
my journey finally comes to an end.

here, between your breasts,
I have finally found my home.

what have I done to deserve you?
what have I done to deserve you?

what battles have I won
that you lie in my arms in complete surrender?

what worlds have I conquered
to hold your waists filled with doves?

what tapas* have I done
to kiss your breasts filled with honey?

ah! let others scale the mountains
and search the valleys for knowledge.
whatever there is to know
I shall know in our single kiss.
what is hope, but your parted lips?
what is home, but where your lips meet mine?
what is poetry, but what our tongues write on one another?

so, kiss me, my love, kiss me.

but, don’t kiss me gently.
don’t kiss me as you might kiss a dice
that you wish to charm.
don’t kiss me as you might kiss a bud
that you wish to open up.
don’t kiss me, as if this is our first
hesitant kiss. don’t kiss me gently.
kiss me, as if this is our one last kiss.
kiss me, as if this is our one last chance
to become one again.
kiss me, with all your bones.
kiss me, with all your hopes.

kiss me, with all your dreams and doubts.
kiss me, as if to bring the very moon to the earth.
kiss me, as if to bring the very sun to its knees.
kiss me, my love.
together, let’s wipe out
all the memories from our lips,
sweet or bitter.
kiss me, my love.
together let’s erase
all the omens from our tongues,
good or evil.
kiss me, my love.
together, let’s dissolve the world’s clocks
in our mouth’s water.

my love, tonight I want to tell you
that I love you, but not in whispers.

tonight, I don’t want to come to you
softly, knocking on the doors of your heart.

tonight, I want to come flying,
as a thousand arrows.
I want to come falling,
as the sudden rain.
I want to come rising,
as the silent pain, as the secret melody,
from your soul to your lips.

come, my love, swim in the water of my kisses,
ride on the back of my horses,
dance to the rhythms of hips,
visit the worlds I visit with your eyes closed!

oh! let me hold you
with my arms of metals and bricks,
as if you were a child stirred by thunder,
as if you were a bird seeking shelter from the rains,
as  if you were about to die or disappear!

oh! let me run my fingers through yours,
as if I were a river,
as if you were a river,
as if we were flowing into one another!

oh! let me touch you, in disbelief,
as if you were a face in the mirror,
as if you were a moon, trembling in water!

oh! let me touch your tresses
in which the night hides,
in which the light hides, till dawn sets it free!

oh! let me caress your body
to make every hair come alive!

oh! let me mould your waist and breasts!

oh! let me kiss your ears of maze, your cheeks of flames,
your eyes of rosebuds! oh! let me kiss your breasts of yellow moons!
oh! let me kiss your navel of secrets, your armpits of guilt!
oh! let me kiss your twin mountains, your valleys of darkness,
your scented flower! oh! let me kiss your legs, your feet,
your fingers of pure light!

oh! let me taste your neck of longing!
oh! let me eat the dirt, lick every drop of sweat!

let me,  let me fill you with my love!

open your legs, here I come!
on a horse, on a cloud,
on a bus, on a boat, here I come!
as a man and a bull, here I come!

with every thrust, I shall erase all the  marks of your lovers!
with every thrust, I shall crush your mountains of guilt and shame!
with every thrust, I shall answer all the rumors!
with every thrust, I shall build a temple for our love!
with every thrust, I shall build a tomb for tragedies!

come, my love, join me in this dance!

let us  invoke the gods and angels
that fly in our eyes!
let us invoke the demons and dragons
that roam in our hearts!
let us invoke all our ancestors!
let us invoke all our children!
with every thrust, let’s bury all the arrows
that travel between our hearts!
with every thrust, let’s bring down all the walls
that stand between our souls!
with every thrust, let’s become one!

let me just lie in your arms.
let me just lie in your arms.

for this alone, men wage wars
and overthrow kingdoms.
for this alone, men launch ships
and travel great distances.
for this alone, men huddle together in darkness
soaked in alcohol, night after night.

for this alone, for this alone.

tapas – meditation done for a long period to get one’s wishes granted by god.

This poem is part of the Poetry Book Oblivion

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Balaji Gopalan

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I owe all of my poetry to the influence of Pablo Neruda. Reading him 10 years ago on the beaches of Goa, gave me the permission to be who I am and write what I feel. My poetry has never been the same after that. All that I write is an offering to Neruda.
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Book Profile: Oblivion Written over several years, oblivion traces the journey of author’s first love, as it moves from longing to being to loneliness. Each poem is complete in itself, capturing a singular aspect of love, a petal in its