Punctuating Reality

The powers that be,punctuation marks
the Security Council,
the U.N. and World Bank
and governments
of nation states
by their silence
have thus ” . ”
spelt out and punctuated
Tibet’s reality today –
A fullstop
enclosed by
two inverted commas –
Tibetan reality
from their point of view.

Tibet and Tibetans
don’t really exist.
We are a dispensible,
historical entity,
devoid of practical
economic ramifications,
quietly playing out
our logical end.

But we Tibetans
are humans too.
We don’t view
events this way.
We do exist.
We will resist.
The end is yet to be.
We will script
our own destiny.

Half a century
of Chinese madness
and the world’s
callous acquiescence
aren’t indicators
of an irreversible fullstop.

Instead, I’d say
events in Tibet
can be symbolised
by a comma.
At most, a semicolon –
just a short break
in Tibet’s long history.

In point of fact,
it just might be
an exclamation mark
to wake Tibetans up.
Or even a literal
question mark,
asking the world
where it’s heading
and what it’s values are?

Friends. Humans.
We’re in
the 21st century.
Would you agree?
All humans wish
and have a right
to freedom.
Do you still agree?

Isn’t that reality?

Published in: on Saturday, March 8, 2008 at 5:36 pm  Leave a Comment  

We Do Exist

we do exist
The Senate and Congress
Say, we do exist.
The U.S. government says
We don’t really exist.
But we know for real,
We do exist and will resist.

The European parliament
Says, we do exist.
Their governments say
We don’t really exist.
But we know for real,
We do exist and will resist.

Our Indian neighbours
Are aware, we do exist.
Their government says
We don’t really exist.
But we know for real,
We do exist and will resist.

The U.N.H.C.R.
Says, we do exist.
The U.N. says
We don’t really exist.
But we know for real,
We do exist and will resist.

When will governments realise
They too, represent humanity,
Display a little courage,
Tend towards honesty?
For they too know for real
We do exist and will resist.

When will the powers that be,
Give up discrimination?
When will the Chinese too
Give up their xenophobia?
For they all know for real,
We do exist and will resist.

Published in: on Saturday, March 8, 2008 at 5:35 pm  Leave a Comment  

Lungta Banners

BLUE for sky.lungta banners
White for clouds.
Red for fire.
Green for water.
Yellow for earth.

The elements,
All complete.

My Tibetan heart
Gladdens to see
Lungta banners
Fluttering gently
In the breeze.

								Lake Namtso, Tibet
Published in: on Saturday, March 8, 2008 at 5:33 pm  Leave a Comment  

Gazing At Pale And Placid Indian Skies.

Drapchi prison

Drapchi: Tibet's most dreaded Prison in Lhasa, Tibet.

Gazing at pale and placid Indian skies.
Eavesdropping on subcontinental chirps and dialects.
Digesting dal, rice and heavily spiced curries.
My thoughts too, scarcely echo my origins and home.

Yet today in a heavy-hearted, wistful mood I question
My values, my lineage and questionable identity.
Who’s aware of them? Who upholds my identity?
Who strives courageously, silently inspite of everything?

Ordinary Tibetan faces in cold, clammy Chinese prisons.
Yet fearless determination shine in your genuine eyes.
Conscience-keepers to the Tibetan nation and people.
Forgive us our superficial and negative existence.

We’ve never experienced your agony and fears.
We’ve never felt your anguish, pain and tears.
We’ve never seen your ruthless, insatiable torturers.
Forgive us our benightedness. We’re as if already dead.

Despite the decades we continue in blind unawareness.
Unaware effort pays, we chase self-created mirages.
Unaware of our brethren we suffer in pettiness.
Unaware of pure potential apathetic we remain.

Yet you heroic beings, amidst violent Chinese insanity
Are true renunciates with fearless concern for others.
Pure beings with power, you are genuinely aware.
Aware of our values. Aware of our uncertain future.

May the Three Jewels always guide and provide for you.
May the Three Long-life Deities always sustain you.
May the Three Protector Families always guard you.
May every Deity energize you making you invincible.

May this heartfelt and spontaneous communication
With the flag-bearers of our nation and people
Inspire all Tibetan brethren who come across this piece.
May the struggle of our freedom-fighters swiftly bear fruit.

Published in: on Saturday, March 8, 2008 at 5:32 pm  Leave a Comment  

You Were Born In Troubled Times

YOU WERE born in troubled times.
You studied in the darkest of times.
You worked in uncertain times.
You truly are a jewel of Tibetan literature.

You studied the works of the great masters.
You studied with the great masters.
You studied the great masters for ordinary Tibetans.
You truly are a jewel of Tibetan literature.

You surpassed the masters of old.
You resurrected our literature as of old.
You gave us a form to express ourselves.
You truly are a jewel of Tibetan literature.

You were a leader. Past masters just followers.
You were a conflagration. Present masters just torches.
You were lightning.Your best detractors burning splinters.
You truly are a jewel of Tibetan literature.

I’ve barely read a word that you wrote.
I’ve scarcely heard a verse you scribbled.
Yet I know you are the best in these depressing times.
Dhondup Gyal you are a jewel of Tibetan literature.

Published in: on Saturday, March 8, 2008 at 5:31 pm  Leave a Comment  

Gendun Chophel Rinpoche

GENDUN Chophel RinpocheGendun Chophel
You spent a lifetime
Teaching appearances
Were merely mental constructs.

Yet we the dregs
Of your homeland
In our blighted ignorance
Always took appearances for real.

Thus utterly misconceiving
The illusory nature of appearances
We rejected you, imprisoned you,
Tormented and tortured you.

Yet you remained compassionate
To the very end. Forgive us.
Deliver us Rinpoche
From our iniquitous blindness.

Published in: on Saturday, March 8, 2008 at 5:29 pm  Leave a Comment  

Friends Of Tibet And Tibetans

Friends of Tibet and Tibetans,
In the darkest years
Of Tibetan history
You’ve provided for us
With generous abundance.

Food and shelter,
Love and affection,
Sympathy and understanding,
Joy and happiness,
Inspiration and courage
And hope and vision
For a brighter tomorrow.
For a future of freedom
On the roof of the world.

Friends of Tibet and Tibetans,
Although I can never repay
Your truly infinite thoughts,
Words and acts of kindness,
Yet in token please accept
These unspoken words of gratitude
That pours forth from a Tibetan heart.

Published in: on Saturday, March 8, 2008 at 5:27 pm  Leave a Comment  

We And You

As history dawned our ancestors ascended
Bewitched by the marvels of the lofty plateau
And inebriated by the blue skies and rarified air.
Acclimatized to the heights they settled in Tibet.
In similar fashion, your early human predecessors
Roamed the low-lying empty plains and hills,
Forests and caves and the ocean’s edge.
Enchanted. Sheltered. Secure. They settled in China.

Grazing and hunting our wild forbears survived.
Around Kailash our primeval civilization centred.
Yarlung valley and its fertile environs, soon
Bred grand designs and unity in a martial race.
Meanwhile your Shang and Chou cultural rumblings
Led to Chin unification and the Great wall defences.
Three centuries of the Tang epoch flourished.
You truly felt the Middle Kingdom had no equal.

Yet in military campaigns we terrorized your existence.
Then sense and treaties prevailed. Buddha’s words
Gave us new direction. We succumbed to non-violence.
We scattered. Searching Truth’s essence we lived on.
Within your Wall you delighted in the worldly arts –
Your civilization’s genius. Philosophy too blossomed.
Tang gave way to Sung.Then Mongols and Manchus ravaged.
Tormented you with the scourge of foreign oppression.

We awoke to the 20th. century. Startled. Uncertain.
Lost in time. Confused by your sinister intrigues.
Complacent. Isolated. Our world view unacceptable.
Our dreams died. Since ’49 you scripted our nightmares.
For you the the century ushered in continued colonial abuse,
A fragmented country, anarchy and everyday terror.
Mao and his mad colleagues, your cunning saviors then
Created visions.Subjected you to cycles of repression.

Today our people fettered. Monasteries. Faith shattered.
Our culture denied – spoils of China’s patriotic insanity.
Yet visions. Hopes reappear. We continue to smile
Offering the world our treasures – our Buddhist heritage.
Today, your people. Your leaders. Appearances changing.
But within. Secretive. Inhuman. Patriotic zeal lives on.
Your history replete with cycles of violence and fear.
Is that all you offer the world? When will you change?

We are the oppressed. You the oppressors revelling.
We are the subjects. You slave masters – triumphant colonists.
Yet remember. The torturer too is an abject subject.
We object your violence. You remain unapologetic. Barbaric.
We pray for humanity. You display your inhumanity.
We’re in tune with the future. You still rot within.
We dream of free tomorrow. Change. Freedom is your nightmare.

Published in: on Saturday, March 8, 2008 at 5:26 pm  Leave a Comment  

A Colonial Subject’s Anguish


The 10th Panchen died under suspicious circumstances 
following remarks against the Chinese. The 11th Panchen 
has been under house arrest since the age of six.

In the beginning,
Without exception
We are all born
Naked and helpless.

In the middle,
Without exception
Our fleeting lives
Can be kind and rational.

In the end,
Without exception
We all depart
Unaccompanied, penniless.

So why are the Chinese
Demolishing Tibetaness,
Destroying Tibet, and
Demonising themselves?

May all colonists
Without exception
Realise their folly, and
Let their subjects, be free.

Published in: on Saturday, March 8, 2008 at 5:24 pm  Leave a Comment  

23rd. May 1951

23rd. May 1951.
Another century.
Another millennium.
An earlier generation
Of Chinese leaders
Terrorising, imposing
An illegal treaty.

23rd. May 1951
Seventeen points.
Seventeen impositions.
Violation upon violation
Followed the treaty.
Honesty and China
Eternally at odds.

23rd. May 2001.
Chinese deviousness.
Chinese coarseness.
Chinese civilization’s
Cherished values today.
Naively commemorating
An illegal, colonial treaty.

23rd. May 2001.
Tibetan century.
Tibetan millennium.
Tibet and Tibetans
Confused. Yet still alive.
Meekly and mildly opposing
The dishonest designs
Of the destructive demons.

23rd. May 2051.
Another day.
Another century.
Will Tibetan identity
Still survive the sinister
Demographic designs
Of the Diabolic devils.

Published in: on Saturday, March 8, 2008 at 5:23 pm  Leave a Comment