Voices Within: Kanwar Dinesh Singh

Kanwar Dinesh Singh
Kanwar Dinesh Singh is a poet, storyteller, critic and translator based at Shimla. His publications include several volumes of poetry in English and Hindi, besides books in literary criticism. His poems, short stories, reviews, interviews, essays and papers have appeared in reputed newspapers, magazines, journals and anthologies in India and abroad. He is the recipient of the ‘Himachal Pradesh State Sahitya Akademi Award’ for poetry. He has also got the Associate Fellowship of the Indian Institute of Advanced Study. Currently, he is Associate Professor of English at a Government College affiliated to Himachal Pradesh University, Shimla and Editor of Hyphen. Email: kanwardineshsingh@gmail.com

 Where I Belong

Where a koel comes to tweet me everyday
in sweet notes wishing me every morning a good day;
Where I get my share of sunlight,
strengthening my hopes with its every ray;
Where every deodar lifts my morale
to keep my goals high on life’s pathway;
Where oaks motivate me to fight against seasons and
lay out a carpet of their leaves on my way;
Where the wind with its varying temperature
quicken my soul with its soothing sway;
Where the setting sun shines even better
with a mesmerizing mélange of colours everyday;
Where monsoons shower the coveted amrita
my earnest obeisance in reverence I do pay.
Shimla is mine where I am in the right place,
I belong to this town―unique in every way.

 At Variance

Where are those evenings
that made us turbulent
if we didn’t converse
with each other?

Where is the moon
that was the eye-witness
to moments we consumed
in togetherness?

Where is the twilight
that used to incite us
to be lost in the eyes
of each other?

Where is the gloam
that camouflaged us
while our lips were locked
eyes closed?

Where is the night
that snatched away sleep and
all winking
from our eyes?

A year and a half
has slyly slipped away and
I am still waiting for you
with owly eyes…


there goes the aged watchman―

packing up all his rays,
carrying them on his shoulders, he is
descending the steps
down the western horizon.

Now he’d take rest
For some time

there, at the bottom of the horizon,
on the bank of a brooklet,
there is his hut;
he’d wash his face, hands and feet
and would move into his dark cellar,

where to one nook
he has his kitchen―
he’d light his hearth
and cook some spinach
and four loaves for himself.

warming his feet
in the heat
of the hearth,
he’d rush into his cot,
wrapped in rags,
getting under a patchwork quilt,
snoring for some hours,

he’d stand up again―

as everyday, he’d wash
his face and hands, carry
the pack of rays
on his shoulders
and walk on foot
along the side of the brooklet,
would reach
the bottom
of the eastern horizon,
would climb the steps
and appear at his post again,
stand for his duty,
spread his rays
as everyday.


Who has seen cedars—
bedecked with flowers?
Yet they do bloom
            for life, they emit perfume,
            they do shed pollen, and
transpire the vital air,
apt to the season
titivated they groom.

Seasons come and go.
With seasons, cedars alter
the ways of exuding their fragrance,
but they never ever
change their colour—
their evergreen viridiscence,
which is the foundation
of the entire vegetative life;

Standing straight—
on their roots,
being steady, unflinching, they
attain the coveted heights and
live a life, handsomely long and healthy.

They are never stuck up—
in the prime of their youth—
akin to flowers—
in allures of
a variety of colours.
Voices Within - Complete List of Poets :: Setu, January 2019

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