Randhir Khare – Departures

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Randhir is a Founding Contributor to Live Encounters. For the last 5 years he has staunchly supported us by ‘donating’ his poems and writings, often previously unpublished. The energy of Mother India seeps through his lyricism and embraces the readers.  We are thankful for his generosity – Editor

Departures by Randhir Khare, award winning Indian poet, writer, playwright and activist

The cyclic experience of departing and arriving and departing again works like the rising and falling of tides within us all. This new cycle of poems by the renowned poet Randhir Khare explores the shifting waters within in achingly beautiful cadences, which create moments of finding and losing in epiphanies of dark and light.


Paper Poem

Paper-sheet folds into a parakeet
Rises with a cry off the desk
Out of the window
Into the green
Where foliage heaves with a sleeping wind
And yellow-butterfly shade silent with birthing alphabets
Waits for the touch of a falling feather
To become
A poem.

Paper-sheet stretches into a stream of sky
Seeps out
Dissolves into the blue
Where kites weave their longing
Along cloud crags
Then plummet to pools where rain
Still smelling of oceans
Waits to tell
Its story.

Paper-sheet dissolves into a puddle of spilt tea
Map of my life
Spirit-country flooded with great whorls of remembering
Floating dreams
Dead who refuse to die
Poppy fields of joy
Clouds of green parakeets

Water stories
And longing.


Last Rain

You left suddenly
And now the air is clear
Dry grass whispers float in the night
Nestling among dog barks

I remember your arrival
Smelling of oceans and faraway lands
Gull feathers and sleep
And your body hovering above me
Damp and trembling
Descended on wings of angels

So much has passed between us
Since then my friend –
Storms floods molten earth
Silver sails gliding over my city
And a ravaging wind
Uprooting trees

Now that you have returned
To your ocean-home of beginnings
I slip back to my old dry ways
Kernelled in silence

I am that which you found
You are that which I lost
And between finding and losing
Love hangs like a gull
Above the blue calm.


The Way Home

The way home leads out of this city
Into the hills
Where rain sleeps in pools green with dreaming
And cold mornings nibble at skin
And toothless fortresses mouth full with sky
Breathe mauve clouds that stream along ridges
Dissolving in the arms of trees
Moss clothed and silent.

There in orchid shade
Where wrens wrest music from
Fluted throats
And the boar noses ooze fragrant with root breath
All that I am – is, all that I was – is,
All that I ever will be – is,
Among coloured pebbles, bird feathers, snails,
Lies my home, my heart.



Yes this is all I have to say
Now that tears and forgiveness
Slide like car lights off the skin of smog
And hunched guilt drags its feet away from me
And the rain has receded to a cemetery of storms
And the hand of an old friend holds mine no more
And waiting is over

Within me the skies are crystal blue
Birdless cloudless starless moonless
It is the hour of now


Where The Path Bends Into The Woods

Where the path bends into the woods I stop and wait
River’s breath rises to meet me
Like a lost companion walking back to life with a smile
Evening now, the hour of bells.

The long day’s sun reclines on the shoulder of a hill
Slips into its arms
Smelling of old apples and feathers of dead birds
Misty with the voice of a lost summer crowded with swallows.

I do not believe this journey ends in ashes or in earth
For the dark holds stories of universes
Floating in the air around us, within us –
Planet spirals, comets, stardust,

Unspoken words, dreams,
Layer upon layer of seasons,
Hills waiting to seed the earth and be born again
With great upheavals of change.

Here we wait through this darkness of owls and jars,
Whilst strangers swim with the tides in our blood
And the wind whispers the fate of lost galleons
Tossed in the night-torn oceans of the sky.



When the old morning keels over
Sprawls on the city
Limbs limp across streets
Head resting on a distant hill
Rain frayed heart wheezing
I leave my day in a closet
Among clothes books smiles memories
Old postcards brushes paints promises
A rock carved statue of an unknown god
Unfinished dreams waiting to repeat themselves
Three pebbles from a mountain stream.

I drink a cool draught of honey light
Step out into other lives
Become the evening.



Peeling black soles of clouds
Blue skin bare
Wind walks through orchards of birds
Freckled with sunlight
I look inwards through the crystal ball
At galleons drowned in star dust
And a sailor serenading the passing of storms

© Randhir Khare

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