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3 Poems about Forgetting, and Not

June 13, 2019 | By

Three wistful poems about remembrance, forgetting and memory by Amitava Nag.

city poems by Amitava Nag

Even in the city, waiting and honking,
Between desires

Sins to Remember

The insides of the head
Jammed with sin
Dripping from the shower rod, like elephants crossing
A jungle road.
Those who have been to jungles, know
There are no roads
Only the eyesight travels a path,
Even in the city, waiting and honking,
Between desires,
Opening my body to the sea,
Delicate caress of a forgiving mind

Whenever I take your name
My lips swell like waves wearing your face
And I feel like dying under the weight of sorrows,
Yet, I dress up again
My empty yogic kundali,
Pretends to call every loss a home,
Till my fingernails weep
Cause it is a sin to remember
Everything —
Songs whispering to winds,
Sweetness of your contours,
Embraces that became stale,
Everything — that I ever knew,
As my own.


poems by Amitava Nag

Beyond these memories and forgetting,
Beyond the sharp claws of purposefulness

Two Fingers and a Soul

Two fingers slide up and down
A torso waits for the touch,
Hesitant, as if it has lost its memory,
Even the photograph of touch is lost,
Do the fingers ever remember the scars on the body?
The ones that are visibly hidden,
Or, the ones with an eventless mind?
Beyond these memories and forgetting,
Beyond the sharp claws of purposefulness
The fingers find a way,
Not of conquest, or a cobweb,
Nor of unpleasant strangers.
Yet, there is a feeling,
Remnants of a noose round the neck, not reckless but
Adorable, as long as the fingers
And the torso belong to the same soul.


poems by Amitava Nag

Then, quiet questions droop to pick up
ancient memories


I know
when the lines of your palm
start forgetting me,
naked by the wings of wind
secretly passing through an arcade,
Then, quiet questions droop to pick up
ancient memories,
‘forgetting is a virtue’, I would tell you often
without the knowledge of numbness.

A flutter of thirst flies away
setting the sun, a bird,
my fingers melt at the thought, and I.
The wood of your jewellery box is scared,
an eagle losing its sight,
Is there a memory after you forget?


(Pictures courtesy: Mobile captures by Amitava)

More Poems by Amitava Nag




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Amitava Nag is an independent film critic based in Kolkata and editor of Silhouette. His most recent books on cinema are Murmurs: Silent Steals with Soumitra Chatterjee, 16 Frames and Smriti Sattwa o Cinema. His earlier writings include the acclaimed books Satyajit Ray’s Heroes and Heroines published by Rupa and Beyond Apu: 20 Favourite film roles of Soumitra Chatterjee published by Harper Collins India. He also writes poetry and short fiction in Bengali and English – observing life in a platter. He can be reached at
All Posts of Amitava Nag

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"The only person who is educated is the one who has learned how to learn and change." ~ Carl Rogers