Saturday, June 29, 2024

A Thousand Lives

—Poetry by Mitali Chakravarty, Singapore
—Public Domain Photos Courtesy of
Joe Nolan, Stockton, CA

I have lived a thousand lives.
In each glitter on the river
lives a memory woven with
waves and sun rays.

Each sparkle calms the
mind, calming to rid of
gut-wrenching pains that
echo refrains.

Life is but an ebb and flow.
Pains come and go.
Each sparkle is transient.
Life pauses, restarts again.

Bejewelled, the river dazzles
with the shimmer of borrowed
light. Thousands of lives drift in
the turmoil of eternal transience.


Water bubbles
like a bauble in a
little nick of a rock.

Fluidly it flows, endless
drops together to create
a stream that chases
an oceanic dream.

The waves in the seas,
whipped by the breeze,
never stop—they flow.

They sway. They beat
the rock, shaping and
reshaping, making more
sand, remoulding shorelines…


I hear voices—voices that
say, look at the sky. It’s so
blue. Watch the clouds
float. Hear the birds call…

Imagine—imagine now—
floating on a cloud, traveling
round the Earth, watching
from above… See—

How green the trees!
Varied hues shimmer gold  or
blue, colourful dots fleck the
day, starry nights fill the dark.

And yet puffs of smoke from
far obliterate the colours of
life with a surreal, haze-like
curling miasma that spreads.


I do not write poetry anymore
as the sky waves colours that
mystify with splendour, inspire
with wonder. I dribble words
over sizzling sausages and eat
them with potatoes and cheese.
I can only describe these. Not
the magnificence that rolls out
a silent sonata of the Universe
or a light ensemble that spills
shades and dances to amaze
with innate grace, vibrancy.
Perhaps, it greets dawn with an
aubade of tints or invites night
with its peacock shades. I watch,
and I watch the reel repeatedly. 


When they pasted
my poster on walls,
I thought it’d be nice.
I’d flit from hall to hall
And the girls would smile.

But now when I skip
from frame to frame,
The girl in the swing
bites an apple, laughs,
and says, “You again!”


The smell and sound
of fresh-mown grass
pauses by the window,
and waits…waits to see
if I’ll notice. The mower
has moved to the next
patch. I hear the machine
whirr a distant hum. I
breathe deeply and feel
the grass bits fly. The
grass is me and I am the
grass. Let’s dance… as
bits of us fly … all dots
in a larger frame made
with a brush steeped
in pointillism.


Today’s LittleNip:

—Mitali Chakravarty

Snowflakes waft—
Pristine, starry, soft,
heady as Nocturnes,
jasmines or edelweiss.
As the sun shines,
crystal clear icicles
melt and disappear.


Our thanks to Newcomer Mitali Chakravarty, who likes to float towards an unreachable utopia with words and rhymes. She has lived in many countries and now is in Singapore, where she runs an online site,, which has published its first hard-copy anthology, 
Monalisa No Longer Smiles: An Anthology of Writings from across the World. She has published a few hundred poems online and in anthologies and now has her debut poetry book, Flight of Angsana Oriole, from India, and another upcoming collection coming from UK. Mitali says she has wafted around the world, to finally find a home on a tropical island filled with angsanas, orioles and parakeets. Welcome to the Kitchen,Mitali, and don’t be a stranger!
There’s not much time left, but next Thursday, July 4, is the deadline for sign-ups for the annual Poetry Postcard Fest, organized by the Cascadia Poetics Lab. Go to: to learn all about it and to register. Poets from around the world are welcome!


Mitali Chakravarty

A reminder that the
Calaveras Poetry Festival
takes place in Murphys today;
the Sierra College workshop,
Intro to Eco-Poetry, meets
on Zoom starting at 10am; and
the Disposable Darlings
After-Hours poetry reading

takes place in Grass Valley
tonight, 6:30pm.
For info about these and other
future poetry happenings in
Northern California and otherwheres,
click on
in the links at the top of this page—
and keep an eye on this link and on
the daily Kitchen for happenings
that might pop up
—or get changed!—
 during the week.

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