Uday Shankar Ojha (Voices Within 2023)

Uday Shankar Ojha is a professor of English at Jai Prakash University, Chhapra, Bihar, India. He has authored/edited a number of books on British and Indian English literature. His poems are published in DreichOutlook IndiaThe Bayou Review (University of Houston-Downtown), Roots & Resettlement (Virginia Tech University), Lit. 202Amity: peace poems (Hawakal, 2022), Wives: poems (Hawakal, 2023), Roi Fainéant Press, and Paddler Press among other venues. Website: https://linktr.ee/usojha 





In the beginning was the Word,
and the Word was with God,
and the Word was God.

  – John 1:1

Listen to the eloquent silences.
Read me in between the lines,
on mute margins left aside.

I am nowhere in words:
the comma with a hitch,
colons cry,

spring ups the cactus
like questions
in your righteous eyes.

I am afraid; abrupt
are the mortal ends
of full stops.

Why do you leave me
like empty beer bottles
by the roadside?

I am what surrounds you;
the air about you
blossoms with my breath.

I am caught; the last resort
is the few words
I am left with.

Let unuttered truth
be pronounced
in words,

wild unconscious
margin blotted.



Impure oil
sloshed around in vain,
floating fast on the surge
of sacred sea,
defeating divine purpose.
Aren’t I the same?

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