Featured Poet: Vivekanand Jha

With the ramp-up of the 2016 presidential campaign lately, I’m already anticipating the news cycle misery to come. Shouldn’t we limit our campaign season to just a few months? I really think that would be a good idea. Other countries have that. We should have that, too.

Anyway, all this preemptive fatigue reminds me of this poem by Vivekanand Jha.


Toxin-Tipped Words

Our politicians, merchants
of vibrant, electoral democracy,
are cultivating a novel poll weapon
of toxin-tipped words,
flooding the lexis with new entrants
of vices and venoms.

It’s not the first time, new thing;
only medium of discourse has changed.
We can understand their disquiet,
sudden harmonic imbalances and fear.
The festival of fleece near,
they rehearse to chant the satanic verse,
seeking salvation for selves
spitting befooling words.

The new gutter dialogue
carries limitless sewage,
stinking a rotten egg-like smell,
words leaving their tongues
as aimless as the boat
without oars and rudder.

A pompous journey on a felonious fling,
through the sewers of language,
setting the course of the nation to capsize
into the water woes of hazy politics.


Dr Vivekanand Jha is a translator, editor and award winning poet. He is the author of five books of poetry. He has also authored one critical book on the poetry of Jayanta Mahapatra and edited nine critical anthologies on Indian English Writing. His works have been published in more than 100 magazines round the world. Moreover his poems have been published in more than 25 poetry anthologies. He has more than 25 research and critical articles published in various national and international anthologies and referred journals. Recently he has edited a poetry anthology, The Dance of the Peacock, featuring 151 Indian English poets and published by Hidden Brook Press, Canada. He is son of noted professor, poet and award winning translator Dr. Raja Nand Jha (Crowned with Sahitya Akademi Award, New Delhi). He is the founder and chief editor of two literary journals, VerbalArtPhenomenal Literature. Read his blog at http://www.poetvjha.wordpress.com.

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