Fluidity in poetry


LONGNAM WANBIANG KHARPURI’s poetry is appealing because of its simplicity, writes Poetry Editor Ananya S Guha

The poems of Longman Wanbiang Kharpuri appealed to me because of their simplicity and an adherence to customs and an ethical code. There is fluidity in her poems and graceful movements. There is a strong feminist consciousness as well. She is pursuing her MPhil in Delhi University.


Some things are better left unsaid,
Some things are better left off dead,
Some things sprung from temerity,
Cause only regretful agony,
Some things sweet in the beginning,
Sour and bitter over in conclusion,
Hopes and dreams
That shine and gleam,
Only satisfy vanity,
In delusional sanity,
What is it all meant to be?
What is it that I cannot see?
When will it tear itself away?
I fly into the light of another day,
Why is it that there are eddies within?
Why is it that it is not the calm that hints
A peace that makes forgetfulness,
A necessary remedial anaesthetist?
Some things are better left unsaid,
Words that fail and a mind that rings.
Some things are better left off dead,
A heart that hides and lips that sing.
Some things are better left unsaid,
Words that cannot be read.
Some things just never will set,
An understanding never met,
Some things are better left off dead.



Tough old women sat around a table

Talked about relationships,

Talked about their marriages.

They’ve stood out the ravaging tides of men,

They’ve stood out holding onto their sense.

Hold the fort don’t let it fall to his hands,

She cackles knowingly.

Men are always so hungry

For that grip and rein

Controlling with invisible chains.

Women hold fast to your sanity

Play carefully to decide your destiny.

Your strength lies in breaking theirs,

Don’t be quiet spectators and only glare,

Men have their ways and so must you,

He plays a piece, so you too,

He moves backward, you step through.

Take the win,

Before it becomes a sin,

Against your womanhood, your strength, your integrity,

Ruining your self and your dignity.

Women hold fast,

It is not bombast,

Nor wrong, but strong,

Hold fast hold fast!


For Love’s Not Lost

What sunshine streams
Through the trees I see?
Love’s light be not faded or lost;
Let all Sorrow’s bells not ring for me,
For dearly it surely would cost.

The din of Joy’s share
Holds loud and long,
And keep me away from care.
The Love that comes ever so clear,
Keep me from all due fear


Jngaina la Ïing (Far from Home)

Bump down the road
To a town far from urban mode
Ri raid Khasi prime
(Land of the Khasi folk prime)
Where lag of time
Rule with myth and legend.
Where tigers are men.
Where belief has no relief.
Where dreams brim over the seams.
Where death is celebration.
Where minds hold fast;
Working hands,
Chapped and hardened with rich labour,
Mind body soil are one.
Pray ritual sacrifice to God almighty of the earth the sky the All.
Sacrifice the fruit of the earth to the Mother Mei Ramew.
Sngewthuhkhynnahkajingdei ban buromïa u TraiKynradNongbuhNongthaw
(Understand children the honour in serving the Lord God Creator and Keeper of all)
Bad la kiritikirukom,(Keep one’s customs and ways)Watkletpynnehshijunom.(Never forget, forever keep endurance)
Hold fast hold fast!
So your strength is cast!
Ha la ri,
(In one’s country)
Bad la riti,(Keep one’s customs)
Da la riti.(Protect one’s customs)



These politics of positivity,
Have got me hanging to my negativity,
I don’t want your answers,
When l have mine that I don’t want to bolster,
With a false sense of security,
This isn’t me stating my modesty,
It’s me being me,
Wanting to be free,
But knowing that I will never be,
Hold on hold on
Don’t let everything slip or be gone.
Into these depths of despair,
I wander without care-
Warn me, pull me back
To the abyss entrance crack!
At the end of the land of this world
All my reality unfurl.
Hold on and I mourn,
It is my sojourn,
My joy, my sorrow
My hope for tomorrow-
A gift endowed and taken away
Making me want to say
Something worth saying
Saying that’s worth something

Longnam Wanbiang Kharpuri was born and brought up in Shillong where she did her schooling in Loreto Convent. She then studied in the Assam Valley School, Balipara and later completed her graduation and post-graduation from St. Stephen’s College, Delhi. She is currently pursuing MPhil degree in English from Delhi University. Her key interest is the notion(s) of identity. Her other interest is western singing ranging from rock, blues, soul to classical. She also sketches sporadically and is fascinated with the arts.