Romilla Akham

Call It What You Want.

To my aunt, who deserved a better life.

Life has not been fair to you;

It pained me to see your beauty wither away so soon.

You took your kins` burden all on your shoulders.

Owned another  mother`s children as your own, as big your heart was.

You saw the tears in our eyes as we promised you of the better days.

I couldn`t give you the mirror to let you see yourself.

Reminiscing is all we can we do now.

We blamed the doctors because we couldn`t accept the truth.

Before I saw the grey in your hair, you bid farewell.

Do not be upset for those who couldn`t come to see  you as you writhed in pain;

They were not strong enough to see you that way.

The rays of the sun couldn`t reach you because of the poorly built windows of the hospital;

The corridors caught our tears fallen.

Some betrayed you, some hurt you;

In the end, the Maker took you to give you a better place.

It was a battle to survive every day.

You deserved a better life,

Life has not been fair to you.


Future. Folly. Fear.

Let it fall.

Shred itself into pieces

And destroy all.

Some are scared

And most of us are

As we are not prepared.

Let them make mistakes

Till nothing is left

anywhere that breaks.

Let it burn

Sparing only the few

Who want to learn.

Let there be revolutions

In every corner

And annihilations.

Let them show

Where their ambitions will take

Them in the flow.

Temperature be risen

Cries be louder

Till the point of saturation.

We will rise

From the ashes better

If we are wise.

Only when lessons are learnt

From pain of the past

In the future, can we stop the hurt.

The Writer

Oh my beautiful creature,

How you walk with grace

And as a pain in my eyes.

You could end with me

As lovers with whom

We can have reasons

To cry about life,

Or, end with me

As my material;

In the rubble

Where you broke the bubble,

A story will be found.

Boss and the Sidekick

You be the sidekick
You seemed “psychic”
You know I want “classic”
We will be fantastic
Making people tick
We can be sarcastic
People be going franctic
Wreck them like Titanic
You think it is a gimmick
Then it will be problematic
Because we are terrific
Nothing you see is plastic
Will see more if you stick
You are a comic
If you say I’m diabolic

When to our side you pick
“C’est magnifique ”
– you will speak
As we build brick by brick
A world so cinematic
Unlike those movies dystopic.

It won’t be anarchic
Like in a movie by Kubrick


The affluent and the poor,

Will now be not unsure

Of the leveller’s might.

It reaches corridors 

After engulfing the streets

Even as we fight.

The flood has it all

From houses big and small

All the dirt and the waste.

And all gets a share –

Of the muck and the mire 

Even with haste.
(Flood seemed like a leveller like how death was a leveller in James Shirley’s work.)


Either she or the institution should survive;

Either her sanity or customs should survive;

Either her justice or popular opinions should survive;

Either her individuality or familiarity should survive.
“Her” is interchangeable with “His”. You can read in any way.


Didn’t know enough 

To hate you.

Didn’t know enough 

But enough

To imagine the goodness 

You might have had. 

The ideal

Better than nothing 

If not for yourself, put your existence to use for the people. There are so many sufferings in the world. We can lend our hand to them. Our misery will not help them but our actions will. 

Will you remember my love?

Your eyes look at me

With such indifference.

Sometimes with eagerness

And your arms stretch out for me

Like you know my love.

I think of ways 

To get your attention.

You need not try 

To get the affection 

As much as I tried.

Not only your waking hours 

You look adorable 

But even in your sleep.

I ask you dear,

Will you remember

The love and attention

That I shower on you 

When you grow up

Without any photos 

Or people telling you 

As a proof?

Many will be wishing 

That you remember 

All the affection.

Is it too much?

I will blame nothing 

For you will love 

Someday too

As much as I do.

As much as we do.

After all you are,

Just a baby

Who will turn one 

Who is yet to learn 

About yourself 

Your existence

Your essence.

To my dear nephews and nieces

Should I ?

You are so beautiful 

So broken.

Should I break it to you 

You can be happy?

I wish to continue 

Feasting my eyes

But I wish not 

Your destruction.


Death, the reminder of our mortality comes again.

In winter, summer and unnoticed times, to give pain.

Some hastened by men and some by nature’s invisible hands

Proving the fallibility of our plans.

Great men leave sooner,

Felt the same for those who exceeded their time living longer.

My tributes to such few men who left

And we are left now bereft.

(It was written as a tribute to Marquez, Khuswant Singh, Dabholkar and Chavez who died around the same time.)