Debarati Sen – Yugen Quest Review Summer Edition, June 2022

Four poems

An Ivory Song

In a city that has metamorphosed over the years.

 Dreams hung like barnacles 

from the frayed edges of misspelt stories.

In the mauve twilight, catamarans carried saaphire dreams to far off shores.

In the mind’s hinterland a chaos theory loomed large

blurring the gap between space and dimension.

We are, but biological robots with consciousness.

constantly fighting a battle between the ‘self’ and ‘other’.

Hearts swell like the summer sea glistening under the scorching sun

in a city that doesn’t sleep.

The clouds smells of dark rum

The days are hazy like a nebula.

The creaks made of hyperspace fury

fill the indigo depths with vermillion poetry.

An ivory song blanched in crimson covers the fag end of a September evenings.

A primrose on your tongue tasted of a repertoire of good times.

Peacock blue and emerald green shades shined  with abloom aesthetics

As night set in,the moon drowned in my drink

while I shared my champagne with the  Aurora borealis!

Time’s Tentacles

Time died in this place
trying to find a home far away from home
that bore the fragrance of sunflower kisses.
A penchant for nostalgia fluttered midst the crevices where periwinkles bloomed
and the sourdough of memories sprouted
Reminisce flipped through the pages of my heart
and spoke to the cerulean bosom in metaphorical sighs.
Wearing clouds on my eyelids
I looked for the effaced graffiti on unfinished pages.
An archipelago of memories laid ahead.
Peppered by the rose-colored islands that had witnessed the sunsets of our childhood.
The orange horizon’s serenade in the cold
 and the fragrance of Komorebi on winter noon.
Days of la dolce vita plummeted the spiral staircase
of the cavernous house whose inhabitants had long been decimated by time’s grinding wheels.
The coffee stains on the table calendar,
the unused kettle in the sink where the cassoulet of remembrance brewed
muttered unfinished tales of love, loss, and changing times.
This place was once a happy home
now churned the bricks of loneliness.
My happy place is now a kryptonite
that makes my head dizzy with the migraine of grief.
The good old days rush like a forest fire
and burn through my veins.
I now belong to the ranks of the doomed.
Constantly fighting the battle called life.


I sat by the backwaters of my imagination

and gazed at the stars melting in the mouth of the sky.

Her smile bright like a glazed ceramic

Illuminated the dark alleys of my soul.

The admonishing silence raving through the crevices of the moon

tore the night’s monochrome into pieces.

The wind  blew it away  to distant planets.

My attempt to pour the sea into the bell jar fell flat,

the brine water overflowed

drenching my mouth

that parched with fever.

The cuckoo’s distant farewell song

pierced my ears

It is time to return to the orb of nothingness.

I tried to tie her words with the wind chime

that tinkered with the winds from Bosnia.

The colours of summer inundated the city. 

 Its fragrance perched on my shoulders.

Far away is an abyss that cannot be crossed this evening.

The roaring wind mimicked my inner turmoil.

the paranoia sprouted like grass.

The earth’s rotation rattled on my nerves.

My head felt dizzy with every solstice.

I tried hard to pour life out of an  aluminium kettle

but it spilled from the sides 

and messed up my life’s filigree.

The spectrum of rainbow signalled the dawn’s arrival.

Another usual day was about to take its course.

I kept the night sky within an envelope

and put it safely inside my lavender purse 

till we met again on the horizon’s other end!

Being Feminine

Every time I try to break the barriers, and the banalities
my role as a woman is being persistently questioned.
My benevolence as a female who is the epitome of benign kindness is in jeopardy.
My existence as a human being is growing in precarity
being overshadowed by my existence as a woman.
“Women aren’t supposed to shout”, they said
They gave me a cold stare every time I raised an eyebrow and my voice
They did not find me ‘feminine’ enough.
They said I did not duplicate Goddess Lakshmi in my posture and actions
I questioned why Lakshmi? I could be Kali and still bear equanimity!
They snapped at me again for trying to defy the norms.
For not paying heed to their exigencies
they said this might be my worst deluge of mistakes
not being coy enough
not nodding to their patriarchal rants.
Trying to break free from the shackles of a dismembered identity.
If being vociferous meant being less of a woman, I am better that way!
looking for something more tangible than being ‘feminine’.

Debarati Sen works in Presidency University Kolkata as a Junior Assistant. Her debut book of poems ‘Blurred Musings‘ has recently been published. Recipient of the Tagore Award 2022 and the Sylvia Plath Women’s Literary Award, Debarati finds emancipation in her poetry! She has also been the winner of the International Poetry Writing competition held by the Elite Book Awards in November 2021. She has also grabbed the third position in the National Poetry Writing Month 2022 contest hosted by the Elite Book Awards. Debarati features in the Council Year Book launched  on the occasion of Women’s Day 2022 by Literoma in association with the Public Safety and Security Council of Bengal. She has also been declared as an Empaneled Author in the International Author’s Conclave held by Literoma in December 2021. She is one among the top ten poets of the Women’s Day poetry contest organized by Delhi Poetry Slam. She has co-authored more than fifteen anthologies and is putting together her first anthology as a compiler with the Quill House Publishers. Her poems have found shelter in prestigious websites like  The Yugen Quest Review, The Kolkata Arts, Lapis Lazuli, The Das Literarisch, to name a few.