Haris Adhikari

The Cavity
Proddingwith a sticka stinking decayed presenton the pavement,
came a small boyin tattered dreams, naggingfor a rupee or two.
He interested meas I saw myselfdrifting in his eyes.He had a hunger bit tongueand clear cavitieson his tiny palms.
I thenhad just a cointhat I could spare.I gave it to him.The coin went in the holeand became a pebblelike the ones scattered
down in the street…
He seemed sadas I walked on, and nowthis poem…
May this poemnot go—just like the dollar did—into the poorhands of God.

Light, my clutch
I look up towards the skyand keep looking
at the starstwinkling slowly.
They twinkle on their ownwhich I cannot. My eyescan never shinein total darkness.

Would you like to be a bird?
When you enter the room, you seea panicked dovefluttering here and there.
Your presence is another cage for himand you have two options.
If you’ve ever wished to be a bird yourself,oh, my friend, this very moment is the time!

HARIS ADHIKARI, a widely published poet and translator from Nepal, teaches at Kathmandu University. He co-edits Polysemy, a journal of interdisciplinary research and writing at DoMIC, KU. He has three books of poetry and translation to his credit, and is currently working on three more manuscripts of creative writing. Adhikari’s poetry and works of translation have appeared in such journals and papers as Lyrical Passion (USA), Circumference (USA), Poddle (Ireland), London Grip (UK), Enchanting Verses (India), Prachya Review (Bangladesh), Buddhist Poetry Review (USA), Grey Sparrow (USA), Mad Swirl (USA), Cyclamens & Swords Publishing (Israel), Electric Monsoon (the Philippines), Of Nepalese Clay (Nepal), The Kathmandu Post (Nepal), and Rupantaran (Nepal).