Agha Shahid Ali Poems

Hit Title Date Added
1.
The Wolf's Postcript To 'Little Red Riding Hood'

First, grant me my sense of history:
I did it for posterity,
for kindergarten teachers
and a clear moral:
...

2.
Even The Rain

What will suffice for a true-love knot? Even the rain?
But he has bought grief's lottery, bought even the rain.

"our glosses / wanting in this world" "Can you remember?"
...

3.
Tonight

Where are you now? Who lies beneath your spell tonight?
Whom else from rapture’s road will you expel tonight?

Those “Fabrics of Cashmere—” “to make Me beautiful—”
“Trinket”—to gem—“Me to adorn—How tell”—tonight?
...

4.
I See Chile In My Rearview Mirror

This dream of water-what does it harbor?
I see Argentina and Paraguay
under a curfew of glass, their colors
breaking, like oil. The night in Uruguay
...

5.
Ghazal

I’ll do what I must if I’m bold in real time.
A refugee, I’ll be paroled in real time.

Cool evidence clawed off like shirts of hell-fire?
A former existence untold in real time ...
...

6.
Learning Urdu

From a district near Jammu,
(Dogri stumbling through his Urdu)
he comes, the victim of a continent broken
in two in nineteen forty-seven.
...

7.
Snowmen

My ancestor, a man
of Himalayan snow,
came to Kashmir from Samarkand,
carrying a bag
...

8.
Stationery

The moon did not become the sun.
It just fell on the desert
in great sheets, reams
of silver handmade by you.
...

9.
Shaving

In the mirror, the hand hacks at my skin
It belongs to the child who used his father's
blades for sharpening pencils, playing murder.
...

10.
Taxidermist

First the hand, delicate,
precise, knows how to carve
where to take the knife, make
more alive than when alive:
...