Friday, July 22, 2005


You pull down the jalousie -
A metaphor for your jealousy
As it filters through
Your doe like eyes, your gaping mouth,
The lissome strokes
Of your hand brushing
Against my face.
I pull you in an embrace
Perhaps telling you in my own way
Let it take place, let it take place
This doesn’t in any way
Encroach on our love’s space.

©Dan Husain
May 26, 2003

Friday, July 15, 2005

Salim Joshua at A Soirée. . .


So we must end the conversation now.
It has hung long
From the Rembrandts and the Rousseaus
(cheap imitations
mounted on dreams
sundry & parvenu)

That your silent walls adorn.
But you wish to speak
About the trivialities that tweak
Your propriety, your idea
Of what the world is, of what it should be.
I feign interest
(how may I tell you
I am part of the world that you hate).


They sit at the bar.
Everyone has assumed a role,
Everyone is a character.
London is no more a fad,
New York may still pass.
“So I was at this glistening
Office of wall glass
On the 67th floor of Chrysler
At Lexington Avenue”
And then throw in the punch –
The Exotica! –
Of how you spent the weekend
Scuba diving in Aruba,
Lounging, smoking pot
At Luna Lodge in Costa Rica.
The boys are agog.
They’re too eager to fill you in
About their training stints in Düsseldorf.


We sneak into a quiet corner.
The evening trails as a wispy fragrance
On your wine laden lips.
I wish to drink the moistness,
Feel your heat against my breath.
My hands rustling against your breasts
But suddenly you break free,
“Wait! Let me see
where my darling husband is?”


We sit with our bellies full,
Courgette and prawn dolloped with soufflé,
And break in idle chatter, pitter-patter
Sprinkling names –
The photo shoots with Condoleeza Rice,
(or is it Condella – someone coughs!)
The stiff upper-lipped editors at Knopf,
The haute couture,
The avant-garde,
The ‘here’ and ‘now’,
The ‘whys’ and ‘how’,
The ‘ifs’ and ‘buts’,
The ‘must do’ and ‘have musts’
The discerning eyebrows,
Dancing flamenco
With waspish tongues:
Shreds of half-understood conversations
Heard at someplace else –
That may ease this evening of discontent.

But in our hearts, as the arguments roll
We become detached more and more.

© Dan Husain
July 14, 2005

Sunday, July 10, 2005

When We're Dead. . .

When we’re dead
Strange people crawl into our intimate spaces.
I see the aunt who spewed venom
Washing utensils in a kitchen
Where once we chopped coriander and cucumber
With other assorted vegetables
For a salad that I fussed and you fretted upon
But in the end we did relish eating it
Over a meal of courgette and prawn.

And there is this uncle,
Weeping profusely next to my mother,
Who always thought I am good for nothing;
A wastrel who lived off his parent’s deeds.
He once said he had a job for me –
A sales executive in a respectful company –
But we knew in his motives he is suspect;
He only intends to oblige, to humiliate.

Oh! There is this beautiful cousin,
Who once was besotted with me,
Washing her lovely daughter’s nappies
In a bathroom where once I washed
Our little girl’s clothes and yours too
When you lay nursing after a painful birth giving.
And as I rinsed them dry
You smiled through the slit of light
That fell across the bed,
Your lithe body, your blessed face.

And there they sit, my friends,
Huddled around my forlorn father
Who only shakes his head and sighs –
If he had to die
Why did he take his life?
Why didn’t he also perish
In the same car accident
That snatched his wife and lovely kid?

© Dan Husain
May 5, 2005

PS: This poem was written after an extended tragedy in my family. An uncle of mine lost his wife and daughter in a car accident and then 20 days later committed suicide. I wrote this poem on his day of funeral. This is my humble tribute to the lovely family of Shakeel Abidi, Deeba Abidi and Sara Abidi (She was only 16).

Tuesday, July 05, 2005


So she says she is hurt
Tossed up and thrown
By flippant waves
Of my carefree words
At jagged stones
That her perception constructs.

So I wonder throat parched
In early hours of a thawing March
Didn't she see peeping, beckoning
Between the lines, behind the words
My love for her,
My indifference for others?

© Dan Husain
March 25, 2005