Padma Devkota

Padma Devkota Poems

we filter our water before we drink it
we filter our air before we inhale it
we have yet to learn to filter
the news before we swallow it,

Free is the sky and free the heart
that pounds inside a dark, grey chest,
free is the raven, free and smart,
graced with pow’r and with wisdom blessed.

I dreamt (please keep it hushed)
of a ripply mirror where the image of the sky
dropped a question mark: 'Who is? Who is? '
And the mirror said: "Sky is! Sky is! "

The air is fresh and green.
Between the trees
silence sounds a perfect melody;
the river's voiceless ripples gently tease

When I was idealistic and young,
I was Dr. Faustus:
ready to love any beauty for while,
willing to risk heaven for the mysteries of the world,

Do old hearts die like embers gold to grey
losing their glow and warmth to slow decay?
Or is the eternal spark a deathless thing
that can relish even in frigid times

A seed on fallow ground, a fresh sapling
caught between jumbo roots of spreading trees,
a jaundiced leaf that hangs loose on a bough,
a bud in unkempt garden invaded by weeds

Human laws are ever changing as the human heart explores
newer values while some remain what they are for evermore
so that truth is hard to grasp and it is hard to be quite sure

Swimming has a beginning and an end. The depth
invites and lures my being with promises
of powerful potentialities, I dive into the trembling light
of blue enchantment to retrieve

The curse of night over
like a rock that breathes again
and feels the surge of sensation old as life
stretching her cramped limbs and cowered curves

With a streak of fire the sun wrote on
the water a name that is eternal,
the water guarded jealously a tone of colour
and song that mingled with the waves,

There is no language after death
no thought no culture no habit
discourse none no quarrels nor amorous speech
no deceitful words nor confused stammering

If only I could smooth all my ripples
and drive the hidden current of my soul
to wide seas beyond sight in soundless flow
through obscure paths hidden to searching eyes

The bush is known by the rose:
the rose that dances upon a thorny stem
with its colorful emotions
and its fragrant love

All young girls who are yet single
And course along their lonely way
Dream each day to so commingle
With another to flow away

In a place I will not name
a hotel with a small front garden
had planted rocks that sat like sages
lost in meditation at the centre of flowers

You love the small green plants that flower forth with the season's spell.
You love the vines that crawl like a baby along the wall
and leave the imprints of their smile everywhere.
I often see you clipping extra twigs or stems


This fading screen is my luck today
though it still glows opaque.
I see and think of what Truth must be
as if ‘twere a piece of cake.

leaves frozen on the stalk
cry as they break
when childish claws oppose
the beauty that such life takes


To the Reader
I. The Lord of Love

Padma Devkota Biography

The biography of sensibility should be self-evident in the poems.)

The Best Poem Of Padma Devkota

We Are Fine In Kathmandu

we filter our water before we drink it
we filter our air before we inhale it
we have yet to learn to filter
the news before we swallow it,
the leaders' promise before we applaud it,
the friendly neighbour's pat before we discover
how easily we are beguiled.

we have played tall with each other
without seeing how great dwarfs we are.
we have believed in the volume of the demanding voice,
in its commanding tone
but never understood how logic too rules the world.
we have polished and glittered our exterior
but have sounded like hollow tin-people
signifying nothing to the larger world.

friends who have sought home elsewhere and left us behind
to strengthen our faith in fate
after the natural calamity
after the imposed embargo
should you wonder how we are doing here
let me tell you we are fine in kathmandu
for we filter the air we inhale
and we filter the water we drink
and we measure the street to work and home
with strong feet

and the captains of the nation fail to execute
the 90% strong constitution
against a weak minority
in a democratic republic of nepal.

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