Poetry: Lahore, I am coming by Rizwan Akhtar

rizwan akhtar

Rizwan Akhtar works as an Assistant Professor in the Department of English, Punjab University, Lahore, Pakistan. He completed his PhD in postcolonial literature from the University of Essex. His poetry has been published in the the UK and countries throughout the world including:   Canada, India, New Zealand and U.S.A.

Poems from Rizwan Akhtar’s first collection ‘Lahore, I am Coming’

lahore, I am coming Rizwan Akhtar



in a point of view

narratives and stories

wed each other to which I cling,

who decides in me to write and to leave

just as a wasp shatters normalcy

of language whose dissonant droning

is a plot, an untypical conspiracy

of creativity the whole day I carry

from breakfast to a litter bin

where I stare at the fate of a wrapper

and of a poem, and stinging questions

they are like knots in a braid more appealing

than the length of an ungainly manuscript

an editor dismisses but remembers

the best parts, so out there under trees

and on pages we exist without wings and words

bred to specialize in alienating themes

no one comes to distract us

laugh out if you are alone otherwise

you are also alone, homeless

are not anthologized.

She Was a language

The limits of my language means the limits of my world.

Ludwig Wittgenstein

In the sobering glare of afternoon

her skin glows, eyes stay behind

steamy spectacles, I clean them slowly

winter leaves a hazy legacy on eyelashes

loading analogies, when she inhibits a smile

I introduce words, my intentions

are paraphrased like a tradition

timing her tongue to silence

using lengthy phrases, too soon

I run out of pages and scamper for elbows

her braid sways like a sentence

whirling me on a mystic path

unaware of end

space shudders to perfection

there is need to conclude her

in a manuscript.

Lahore, I am Coming so far is the most promising debut by a Pakistani poet writing in English.‘  Faiza Anum, Daily Times. Feb. 2019

‘This collection of poems is the most beautiful love song for Lahore, the city of love and friendship!’ Dr Shahid Imiaz (Pakistaniaat: A Journal of Pakistan Studies Vol. 6 (2018))

Lahore, I am Coming
Author: Rizwan Akhtar
Publisher: Punjab University Department of Press and Publications 
Pages: 220
Price: 500/- PKR

Buy online

In Times of Self-Isolation by Rizwan Akhtar (June, 2020)


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This section: Poetry, Rizwan Akhtar – Poet, stories and poems

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