Aftab Yusuf Shaikh is a young Indian poet based in Bombay. Writing for more than a decade now, his works have been featured in publications like Muse India, Frogpond, Kritya Poetry Journal, The Istanbul Literary Review, etc. His poems have appeared in anthologies like Before We Have Nowhere To Stand(Lost Horse Press, 2012), Overplay/Underdone (Medusa's Laugh Press, 2013) and Malala (FutureCycle Press, 2013). He lives in Mumbai writing poetry on varied topics like religion, social issues, philosophy, etc. He gained his Bachelor of Theology degree from IICM, Chennai and is pursuing his Bachelor of Arts degree in English Literature and Psychology from the University of Mumbai.
Aftab Yusuf Shaikh
the Ganges comes to the
doorsteps of Benares and washes herself of
the sins her own sons have thrust upon her.
Here, in our land,
you can churn out any favour
from a woman,
you only need to call her mother,
Sweet sweet Ganges,
your nectar I am fond of,
red red Benares, your skin, a coat of prayers,
reminds me of my thousand years old self.
Those who could have
attained peace in life well lived,
foolishly throng to this city,
to die and gain salvation.