Sharmila Pokharel

A Penny Pincher

He started the day reciting a mantra

from Bhagabat Gita and soon after

grudged how hard it was

to earn and save more

 

Lowering his power glasses

Upto the long nose

Putting saliva in his index finger

kept on counting the cash

and regretted how little he had it

 

All day long

he talked about money

took a long sigh in frustration

and dreamt of winning a lottery

 

 Fear of Dying

 I can see it clearly

When it knocks on the door

Something flows as a stream

In my blood vessels

 

It ruptures my mind

And darkens the vision

It smells like a polecat

leaves no room for breathing

 

Fear knocks my door

Every now and then

In a threatening tone, he asks

Hey, are you still smiling?

 

                     Sound of Silence

                Have you ever noticed the sound

                That touches your heart?

                As a one ting — just one ting

                a temple bell and silence forever 

 

                Have you ever touched the silence?

                Massaging a calf in her neck

                While she waited passionately

                To feel your devotion

 

                Have you ever tasted the silence

                As a sweet offering you held

                in your right palm

                And waited to lick until it melted

                From the warmth of your hand.

 

               Have you ever heard the silence

               When the wind blew gently from the west

               with all the cottons in the sky

               and take you back to your childhood?

Sharmila Pokharel is the author of three books of poetry. Her bilingualsharmila colltrection, My Country in a Foreign Land (Paradesh ma merodesh) was published in 2014 (co-translated by Alice Major).She has received varies prizes including “2012 Cultural Diversity in the Arts Award“Sharmila Pokharel is the co-author ofthe recently published bookof poetry and visual arts “Somnio; the way we see it”. She was born and raised in Nepal and moved to Edmonton, Canada in 2010.