Poems by Vinod Vellayani

Pic by Taras Kots


Translated from Malayalam by Ra Sh


What remains

I know you will
come up the hill
where days graze in summer.

So, pushing aside
all my busy schedules
I come up there.

I root out from my gaze
till I reach you
anything anyone who walks up the hill
before me or after me,
whether they are animals or birds
or men.

It seems that the place to reach
opens itself out for me.
As the pace of my climb increases
the distance to you seems shorter .
When I climb on, on and on,
moving forward without let,
anxious to reach you quickly,
I come across only darkness.

You have gone back.

I know that you will return
to that hilltop where
days graze in summer.

Hence, all over that hilltop,
the warmth of my bosom spreads
suffused with love.


Bird poetry

The poet is like a stream
on the path one climbs up
at all seasons.

In the very centre of the
square of experiences,
at a foot’s height from
a shallow spread of
the mind or the sky,
the poet sows a seed and
watches it sprout
and turn into a tree later.

Each leaf of the tree,
each time,
wears many hues
and shares many scents
lying on the earth.

As if life is still
like an expanse of water
in its physical intimacy
with the earth.


None else

A pulse still beats
in a one-line poem.
The greenish grin
that flows from the tap
displays its intimacy with the roots
as they were sucked at deeply.

The gush of the moisture
rises and spreads in the
makings of the mind
like a storm that mingles with poetry.

There is no other naughty kid
like poetry


About the Author


Vinod Vellayani is from Thiruvananthapuram in Kerala. He has one poetry collection – Pachakam –  to his credit. He translated Tamil author Perumal Murugan’s poems into Malayalam which have been published in a book titled ‘Daivathinte Maranam.’



About the Translator

Ravi Shanker (aka Ra Sh) is a poet and translator based in Palakkad, Kerala. He has published four collections of poetry, Architecture of Flesh (Poetrywala), Bullet Train and Other Loaded Poems (Hawakal), Kintsugi by Hadni (RLFPA) and In the Mirror, Our Graves, a chapbook with Ritamvara Bhattacharya.  Ravi Shanker is also a translator whose English translations include Mother Forest (Women Unlimited), Waking is Another Dream (Navayana), Don’t Want Caste (Navayana), Kochiites (Greenex), How to Translate an Earthworm (Dhauli Books) and The Ichi Tree Monkey and new and selected stories of Bama (Speaking Tiger).