(R.I.P. Derek Walcott: January 23, 1930 – March 17, 2017)
Deep seas of yesteryears wash new froth on your home shores.
Egrets, sea gulls, circle the ruddy skies waiting for perfect thermals to
Rise — ripe air-currents — wingspans larger than civilizational memory.
East tries to meet West, North tries to meet South, Poles magnetize in a
Kaleidoscopic churning — saturating the sea-sky’s azure, a brighter blue.
What is it with an Antillean story that makes ‘the other’ so pale,
And its art so grand, epical — under the Caribbean’s sharp, lucent light?
Lot remains to be unearthed, much remains unspoken, unwritten —
Cotyledons unraveling without nature’s aid or human touch.
Om mani pad me hum — O the jewel in the lotus — that Himalayan echo,
That primal sound — chant from a mother’s womb, a uterus scream —
That life-force balancing points — trying to find an elusive fulcrum.
Sudeep Sen’s prize-winning books include Postmarked India: New & Selected Poems (HarperCollins), Rain, Aria (A. K. Ramanujan Translation Award), The HarperCollins Book of English Poetry (editor), Fractals: New & Selected Poems | Translations 1980-2015 (London Magazine Editions) and EroText (Vintage: Penguin Random House). Blue Nude: New Poems & Ekphrasis (Jorge Zalamea International Poetry Prize) is forthcoming.