Notes to self from an Art Biennale



A novel
doesn’t always need paper.
If you trust a city enough
her walls speak louder.



There are writers
who want.
And there are those
who write.



On a  15X15 feet canvas
even the artist
becomes art.



Old, rolled newspapers
can turn into prayers.
it’s all in the way
you see them.



When you cannot read
between the lines
you make your own.



is the artist’s muse.
He is the fiercest friend.



Where are the sunflowers,
a friend asks—
all of life’s beautiful things?

Didn’t you know
when you enter this world
you leave
your footwear behind.


Things I Learn from a Barred Window

On some days,
there are leaves.
On others,
just branches.

Every cloud
has a story.
Some pour, some drift,
most just disappear.
Only some
can even blot the sun.

Despite the smog
ivy tendrils erupt
amidst concrete.

I often mistake
pigeons gurgling
for an unborn infant.

Sounds of gossip
travel faster
when the pills run out.

Time moves in circles.
That’s why
on the darkest days
I wait for the glimmer
of  night.


Shobhana Kumar

Shobhana Kumar

Shobhana Kumar’s two collections of poetry, The Voices Never Stop and *Conditions Apply were published by Writers Workshop, Kolkata. Her work has also appeared in journals including Kitaab, The Missing Slate, Muse India, Raedleaf Poetry, Open Road Review, Right Hand Pointing, Origami Poems Project and in  anthologies. She was one of the 25 featured poets from around the world at Poetry with Prakriti, 2014. She is poetry editor at Sonic Boom Journal. She also authored 5 books of non-fiction.