Friday, September 1, 2023



In The Night’s Womb


Don’t you think

Night’s shadows are scarier

Than the shady silhouette of the days?


Long winter nights

Swelling with dew drops

On marigold and zinnia bushes

Drive the mind into crazy dreams.


Short summer nights

Shrunk at the shores of dry farmlands

Torment with sweat and power cuts

Loo and love don’t gel.


Soaking rainy nights

Singing tunes of pathos or joy

Soothe the desperate hearts of the farmers

But smuggle away the hopes and joy in the banks .


Flavored autumn nights

 Sprinkling amour and aroma of shefali

Drive the silver moon and minds into frenzied desires

The glorious golden sun looks red in shame .


The pull of darkness

Is stronger on desire and dement

The sun light dispels fear

The living world appears friendly.


Night’s dark canopy

Protects both the evil and the devil

Day light nourishes

Life, love, hope, joy and emotion.


So I am afraid

Of the scary womb of the night

And the owls, bats, wolves and predators

Roaming in search of the frail and feeble


Let me live in light and delight, please!


Matter And Spirit


You think;

We are mostly matter;

Flesh and blood coats

On a skeleton sporting

Muscles, nerves and vessels,

So, let us replenish our

Lives with material blessings

And earthly pleasures.


I think,

We are spirit

A flash of the divine light

Lent to the Mother Earth

To cure the illness of black nights,

Prayers and blessings may change the show

So, let us share our shine

And dare to burn and melt

Till the darkness dissolves

Into a divine glow.


But how easily we forget

Matter and spirit

Are inseparable

As the wax and the wick

As the fragrance and the flower

As the greenery and the grass;


So let us make a compromise,

We shall try to yoke our flesh

To the service of the spirit,

Direct our thought and action

Prayers and blessings

To those joys of flesh

That enlighten the spirit,

Be soft as the sun shine

That makes the buds bloom

And the bees dance in the breeze!




The grains of memory are slipping through

The throat of Time’s hourglass,

Is it age or Alzymehrs?

I am floating in the air

Or am I drowning in the deep sea?

My breathing is slow and shallow

My pulse is threadbare

My heart is pulsating like an old Bedford car


Am I ready to fly away into oblivion?


Time is still flowing, but how do I measure

The time left?

The grains are still slipping

Through the throat of the hourglass of Time.


I know, my bare body is bereft of green

When the Spring will come

No more new leaves or flowers will bloom

No more bees will hum around my aroma-less body

The butterfly in my chest will flutter slowly

And my eyes will be fixed on the glazing sun

Darkness will overpower the flickering of the dim lamp inside.


The hourglass of Time will bear witness

To the shudder on my praying lips,

Uttering “Hey Ram!”




Dr. Mrs. SUMITRA MISHRA, a bilingual writer from Odisha, India, is a retired Professor of English who worked under the Government of Odisha and retired as the Principal, Government Women’s College, Sambalpur. A lover of literature, she started writing early in life and contributed poetry and stories to various anthologies in English and magazines in Odia. After retirement, she has devoted herself more determinedly to creating literary works in English and Odia. Her poems and short stories in both English and Odia are widely published in literary magazines and e-zines. To her credit she has thirty-six (36) published books; 26 in Odia and 10 in English. She writes poems, short stories, plays, essays, articles and translates works from English to Odia and from Odia to English. She lives in Bhubaneswar with her family.


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