Two Poems by Nishi Pulugurtha

Painting: Ronan Mcgeough

By Nishi Pulugurtha

A different time, a quarantine

A different time, a quarantine
Of caring for the infirm and old
Of face and body covered with marks
that distorted and yet revealed
A festering soul – that cared not.
Of mistrust and suspicion
Of itches and rashes and blisters.

Another time, another quarantine –
Of contagion and some chicken stew.
Of troubling relationships – festering.
Of holding on, of struggles
no one noticed, no one could –
Of pain, bitterness and some neem
Of working hard to heal
the scabs that could be seen;
the unseen remain – festering, disturbing.

Of trying times and reaching out – of
Life going awry, yet holding on –
A different time, a quarantine. 


The little ones at play

Stuck in restricted spaces
The little ones find some place to
play, jump, laugh
the quietness disturbed by their joy
for some time.
An old lady and an older gentleman out too –
out under the blue-gray-dark sky
for some time.
Out in the open –
restricted by walls
Walls that are needed – boundary walls
walls that one leans onto –
at times.

Dr. Nishi Pulugurtha is Associate Professor in the department of English, Brahmananda Keshab Chandra College and has taught postgraduate courses at West Bengal State University and Rabindra Bharati University. Her research areas are British Romantic literature, Postcolonial literature, Indian writing in English, literature of the diaspora, film and Shakespeare adaptation in film. She is a creative writer and writes on travel, Alzheimer’s Disease, film, short stories and poetry. Her work has been published in The Statesman, Kolkata, in the anthology Tranquil Muse and online – Café DissensusColdnoonQueen Mob’s Tea House and Setu. She has a monograph on Derozio (2010) and a collection of essays on travel, Out in the Open (2019).


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Read the latest issue of Cafe Dissensus Magazine, “Travel Writing: A mode of constructing knowledge”, edited by Raeesa Usmani, Surat, India.

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