Missing History – Bibhu Padhi


By the time you know,

everything is hidden

in time’s wandering eye.


Places and persons

unvisited for lack of time,


now borrowed from

a lost mouth for the first time.


The waiting is all there is,

to be measured by

an inappropriate loss—

a question to time.


Suffering and loss place you

in small possession of things

long forgotten and now remembered.


An evening’s conversation

lighting up a missing link—


a tremor on the lips, a story

untold for lack of a reader.


And then, all at once

everything falls into place—


a recognition of a lost word

or face, a return to calendar years,

and a feeling of trust in this moment’s


announcement of its very own

truth of things, emerging now at

a blurred distance of insanity.



Bibhu Padhi has eleven published books of poetry. His poems have appeared in The Poetry Review, Poetry WalesThe Rialto, StandWasafiri, The American ScholarColorado ReviewConfrontation, The New Criterion, New LettersPoet Lore, Prairie Schooner, Poetry (Chicago), Southwest Review, The Literary Review, Rosebud, TriQuarterlyAntigonish ReviewQueen’s Quarterly, The Illustrated Weekly of India and Indian Literature. They have been included in numerous anthologies and textbooks. Three of the most recent anthologies are: Language for a New Century (Norton) 60 Indian Poets (Penguin) and The HarperCollins Book of English Poetry (HarperCollins).                 

He has also written a book on D. H. Lawrence (Whitston) and (with his wife, Minakshi Padhi) a reference book on Indian Philosophy (McFarland).