Poems by Jaya Anitha Abraham

Pic courtesy Pixabay



Gospel at the Well

Walking to the well,
Me, a fugitive
An empty pot in hand,
I carry my home in my mind,
Moist in hopelessness,
I bake my bread there,
Save the last of the crumbs,
For my lost soul
Stock the fire,
Holding the coals in my mind,
And mop the floorboards
With a soak cloth, stained in sins
Of the battles of yore.

At noon,
The well wells up alone,
It is the God of the hills,
That fills Jacob’s well,
With the Words of life
From the desert.
I fill the pot to the brim,
Words flow, water-like
Jesus, lips parched,
Our eyes meet and wet too,
His, filled with love,
Mine filled with despair.
Who stops the pain?
When the master of the Word
Meets, the mistress of despair.

(Based on the story of the woman at the well, in the Bible)


Past and the Present

It was in my grandmother’s house,
My childhood dreams grew wings
Under her old brown blanket
They chirped around me,
Like the crickets
In the depth of the nights,
I sang my songs wild.
My mother came home
Like the brief summer showers
Her faint fragrance, enticing
Told me stories
Of the cities she lived in
Scant moments of laughter,
Painted them color.

But, the village grew me
Stars swam in my veins,
I stayed a naïve child
They said, “Grow up,
Be smart,
Like your mom.”
Eyes, downcast and silly
I saw my tanned frail shadow
Would never grow up to hers.

Under the rain drenched sky,
As I recited her favorite poem,
Under the big mango tree,
The dusk drew a new picture
She touched me, and exclaimed,
“Sturdy fingers, like a mom!”
Our shadows rubbed shoulders,
There was laughter too.


Cat’s Days

I have learnt,
To leave a house
Like a cat silently,
I bury deep,
The agonies
Of words that stay,
Laggardly on the walls
Like lizards,
Growing gigantic
Waiting athirst
To be spoken.
The house was burning too,
The mocking heat
Of the days, when
Loneliness burns
Every window,
The walls reflect the vanity
Of men worn out,
In wagers of life.
Their sorrows
Spread next to their skin
Their pointless laughter
Lingers in the air,
Also the screams
From the nightmares,
Never leave.
When I sneak out,
The burning house
Follows my tail,
Leaving the words
Far behind.



It is deep blue,
The color of oceans
And quiet sleep.
All words sucked up,
By the vortex
Of moments of truth,
And silence.
The river beneath the soul,
Rolls on.
It is still deep blue,
The color of a night,
Shrouded in loneliness,
A bird sings solo,
Weaving my dreams
Studded with,
The clandestine glow
Of the fireflies too.


When the Winter Heart Speaks

Under the winter shroud,
The boat recalls,
Frozen waves, unmoving
Sedimented memories,
Of the blush of the spring,
The smiles and the promises.
All pearly and still.
Heart recalls,
The solitary walks
Gazing at the moon,
The pianos, tuneful
At the anonymous windows
The love that burnt bright
At the red-hot fireplaces.
Laughter too hibernates,
Heart screams,
Under silence,
The chiffon shroud.


About the Author


Dr. Jaya Anitha Abraham teaches Economics and Statistics at Abu Dhabi University. Her interests include English and Malayalam poetry and translation. Several of her poems have been published in online poetry websites. In addition, she is interested in green and mindful living.