revised memories

poetry by vipul rikhi


vipul rikhi

Vipul Rikhi writes, translates, sings, plays and performs. Find some of his songs, poetry, articles, stories and books at Ishq Fakiri, an online album of songs with words and translations @ Support the artist @ Google Pay (vipulrikhi@okhdfcbank)

Bleed: A Collection of Poems by Vipul Rikhi

For all of you who have enjoyed the poetry shared here on ‘Revised Memories’ over time, all of these poems and more are now available as a collection titled Bleed. Please buy, read and share. You will enjoy the collection. These are poems that are tender and visceral, soft and brutally honest, at the same time. Available here:
India | UK | US & elsewhere

Bleed Final Cover


Poetry in the midst of all this music
Music in the midst of all this madness
Occasions much sadness

Beauty in the midst of all this ruin
Ruin spread over and surrounded by glory
Makes a sad story

And who are we to be divine or gory
To pursue all this madness or gladness
Gods or devils, beauty / a bad mess
Vessels of love or a blinded fury?



I have tasted great moments of pure being
When I’m not looking, just seeing
Not resisting – agreeing

I have tasted great moments of pure bliss
When a breath is as sweet as a kiss
With nothing to have, and nothing to miss

White Eagle on Ullal Beach

Your wings in a span of sun-drenched sky
My feet rooted among bones in the sand
Heat off water – vapour, air
My pinched eyes shaded by my hand

The breast is white with coloured wings
But you glide just the same
White eagle is the name I’ve given you
But wish I could look without a name


Oh heartbreak, and more heartbreak
to see the beauty of the world
and the frailty of that beauty
and the passing of time
and never stopping to know who one is
and what it all means

At the turn
where the heart breaks
still is the time

The Call

You called me, so I came
Not hearing precisely what you said
Blind of the beating pulse I made
My way through a crowd of shadows and names

Voices I heard, calls, distresses
Agonies, heartaches of bones in dresses
And when I tried to elbow them away
They nothing could do, had nothing to say

Eyes had faces, thoughts had minds
All dark and dead and covered by blinds
Guided by a lonely phrase I strayed
From where I felt I shouldn’t have stayed

With the force of uncomprehended desire
And the urgency a vague memory enjoins
I heard your voice from a far-off point
I entered into the heart of fire

Are you there?

No, you know that you
Are only half-true
Only half-there
A half shade of blue

You are beyond the pale of reality
Half full of air
Your skin is not flesh because
You can hardly feel a layer

A foot between your legs, and poof!
A blow is dealt to your existence
You only half-exist and that
Only out of sheer persistence


Wet clothes on a clothesline
dripping water, dripping sweat
hanging out in the sun to dry
from hands putting them out to rest

Arms extend, contract, extend
as new clothes join the old on the line
hands clip them up, and spread them out
it is so peaceful in the morning at nine

All these women, they’re all my sisters
they’re all my mothers, all my lovers
these women who every morning try
to place the clothes neatly on the line to dry

The rope round my neck is also a line
as I sit in the sun and sputter and die
I choke on my emotions while breakfast readies
I stretch out my feet, to look and sigh

Winter mornings I sit in my balcony
a balcony that is five floors high
and observe all the clotheslines around me
lines dripping with wet clothes to dry

lines dripping with wet clothes to dry

lines dripping… wet clothes, dry…


Words Have Become Trees

We do not speak much now
we only make love
words are left far behind and we
are travelling on a road where we have rested
from time to time

Silence is already here, in this night
the chirping of the crickets allows
my hand to touch her cheek and lie
inertly like a shroud

Our wandering’s end is a promised land
there is nothing there
only words have become trees
and the grass
an infinite silence

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