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Bina Sarkar Ellias

Bina Sarkar Ellias

Poet, editor-designer-publisher of Int. Gallerie
Nationality: India
Email: binasarkar@gmail.com

Biography

Bina Sarkar Ellias is a poet, fiction-writer, art curator and founder-editor-designer-publisher of International Gallerie, the award-winning global arts and ideas journal since 1997. Besides, she is a fiction writer and art curator. Her books of poems include The Room, Fuse (which has been taught at the Towson University, USA) and has a Mandarin edition, When Seeing Is Believing, Cercana Lejania / Closer Farness and Song of a Rebel. Her poems have been translated into French, Spanish, Greek Chinese, Arabic and Urdu. She received a Fellowship from the Asia Leadership Fellow Program, Japan, 2007, the Times Group Yami Women Achievers’ award, India, 2008, and the FICCI/FLO India, 2013 award for excellence in her work.

A Book is a River

A book is a river; a voyage into the unknown on a paper boat. A book is a harbour where boats meet, bearing parables and thoughts. A book is a searchlight illuminating thoughts rooted in a forest. A book is a forest, its leaves dense with words; its words are flames kindling our senses. A book is the sum of all our senses that flow like a river. A book is a river of words that encircles the universe. A book is the universe of life. Life, that unskeins a constellation of experiences — ways of living and seeing and telling. A book is a river. A book is forever.

I Am a Thief

i am a thief
a thief
who has stolen
fruit~
fruit from the tree of life
I have stolen
moments
moments more precious
than the Kohinoor;
moments tattooed
on my meandering
mind.
I have stolen the sun
the sun and moon
the sea and sky
I have plucked stars
stars from the universe
I've stolen music
music from the wind
and birds
I've stolen love
love locked
in hidden chambers
I've stolen time
time from the pages
of destiny
i am a thief
living a life of crime
i am a thief
stealing a life sublime.

In the Warehouse of my Bones

For Filipino artist Agnes Aralleno

in the warehouse of my bones
                                    is the universe
planets, stars, constellations,
                                    swirling dervishes
that live beneath and beyond
                                    the earthly skin.

in the warehouse of my bones
                                    is a soul
seeking realms outside the bazaar
                                    of daily life
seeking hopeful chrysanthemums
                                    in barren fields.

in the warehouse of my bones
                                    is a song
a mystic melody of blackest black
                                    and light
a symphony of the temporal
                                    and infinite.

in the warehouse of my bones
                                     is a sage
who knows life is a mercurial river
                                     that runs dry
who knows the wings of transience
                                   will always fly.

It Happened Thus~

it happened thus~
when man
created god
it was to define
the unknown.
to allay fears
of the unknown.
to shape
the unknown
with contours
of myths
and legends
that would
morph into
sacred books
becoming anchors
for our
slippery souls.
when man
created god
it was to define
the unknown.
to shape
the unknown
and wield
power through
filters of hierarchy.
an old game
of chess~
divide and rule
invade and rule
hate and rule
all of which
is presided over
by god
the creation
of man,
the multi-avatar god
shaped
as Christ
as Hashem
as Kali or Durga or Krishna or Shiva or Laxmi or Saraswati
as Allah.
or as Love, Justice and Compassion.

all and one
inhabit
our churches
our synagogues
our temples
our mosques.
they do not
inhabit our souls

for we have
lost our souls
in transition.

The Skin of Freedom

it is fragile

this skin

that veils 

the intangibles

of life ~

the tangibles

that are intangibles ~

the manic need

for control.

the fear of fear 

that locks

grace into

a windowless room.

the need for grids 

that dictate

whip-lashes of norms

by those 

decadent few.

norms that

spell their 

lust for power

and grip over our

transient lives

that were birthed 

unshackled 

until these tenets

erased our right

to breathe

the pristine air

of freedom.

the pristine air

of freedom 

that has no nation

but one ~

the earth nation

of one people.

 

this fragile skin

this skin of freedom

is ours to claim.

    

Rule of the Sirens

For Students of JNU

(Jawaharlal Nehru University)

 

like sirens

wailing through

night streets

they steal

the quiet

haven inside

your mind.

not to alert

you about the

nation lying

wounded in the

ambulance of

our youth's

desperate protest

but to scatter

seeds of canard

so a forest fire

burns the truth

beneath the

lies.

 

they invade

the halls of justice

and crush

the voice of reason

but truth being

stranger than

fiction, truth will

rise like smoke

like the Phoenix

from the burning

embers of

a nation that will

not be held hostage

by a parliament

of rhetoric

and rogue politicking.

 

do they not know

"it is rain that

grows flowers

not thunder"?

 

it is enlightened

youth who

nurture nations

not those who sunder.      

When Did I Become Your Footstep?

when did i become
your footstep?

it was years before
when the canvas
was clean, except
for a few untidy scrawls
of a childhood tangled
in the winds of change
fraught by uneven
circumstances
that I swallowed
like the morning glass
of milk prescribed
for healthy bones~
and emerged in fine fettle
with a robust mind
that nevertheless
was splintered
here and there
by the ragged edges
of reality. yet~
somewhere, some gospels
had sunk in.
somewhere the bell
of reason had rung~
summoning truth
that began to grow
and edify
like a tree of life
nurtured
within the locus
of one’s hidden being
watered by Rumi
and Khayyam
and contemplating clouds
raining words~

words... when, did I become
your footstep?

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