Ashok Vajpeyi is one of the most eminent Hindi poets and scholars. He is Chairman, Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi. His important publications include 38 books of poetry and criticism, with several works translated into various Indian and foreign languages. He has been honoured with Dayawati Modi Kavi Shikhar Samman, Sahitya Akademii Award,


Birds Will Arrive

Birds will arrive on the wing
carrying our childhood
like sunlight.Birds will arrive
from the pitch-dark jungles
of some ancient century
gathering up these straws
of strange times
cast over us like shadows,
will weave their nests.Birds will bring
dreams left behind
ancestral tales
leave them all
on our verandah
and fly off.

Birds will arrive
who knows from where
will go off
who knows where?

Perched on branches
in the midst of green leaves
neem berries
plumping fruit
birds will chorus
birds will chorus
the songs of our childhood
of our living
and our dying

Birds are unending
they arrive out of infinity
go off into infinity