Bhuwan Thapaliya

Bhuwan Thapaliya

Drunk I am today,

O’ you little tender world.

With the book of life open before me,

thwarted, blank, I sit here before you all.

Immersed in myself, I am in the Tundikhel,

floating between medieval and modern times.


A peanut seller came with a basket of peanuts

and sat beside me.  He gave me, a handful of peanuts

in a colorful piece of paper.  I tossed the peanuts

into the air, and started reading  the paper instead.

The peanut seller smiled and waved me goodbye,

saying, “You are drunk, very drunk today, my friend!


“In remote western Nepal,

people heard the Beatles

on battery-powered tape decks

before they saw electric lights,

and helicopters fluttered

 into their lives

 long before the first trucks got there,”

these sentences rose from their slumber

 and stirred my heart.


“The first airplane landed in Nepal in 1949

but it was seven years later before

the first highway connected Kathmandu

 to the outside world.

Within a year of that first landing,

the Rana autocracy was overthrown

with the aid of an airplane.”

These sentences came out

from the paper, and grappled my throat.


I stood up

but the gravity

of the revelation pulled me down.

I was now drunk, dead drunk

with a million pegs worth of thoughts.


I sat on the grass for a while,

thinking about old Nepal

and my grandfather’s life then.

Then I shifted my thoughts

over to the New Nepal

we claim to be building now.

Where are the roots of the new Nepal

we claim to be building?

Where are the roots?


With a million thoughts

in my head,

I headed to my home

dusting the bare bodies

of the erotic sculptures

on the multi-tiered pagodas

of  hope.


Yes, drunk I am today.

Today I am drunk.

With the book of life open before me,

thwarted, blank, I sit here before you all.

(Bhuwan Thapaliya is the author of four poetry collections. His poems have been widely published in international magazines and journals such as Kritya, Foundling Review, FOLLY, WordCity Monthly, Poetry and Covid: A Project funded by the UK Arts and Humanities Research Council, University of Plymouth, and Nottingham Trent University, Life in Quarantine: Witnessing Global Pandemic initiative sponsored by the Poetic Media Lab and the Center for Spatial and Textual Analysis at Stanford university, Trouvaille Review, Journal of Expressive Writing,  International Human Rights Arts Festival(, Pendemics Literary Journal, Pandemic Magazine, The Poet, Valient Scribe, Strong Verse, Ponder Savant, International Times, Taj Mahal Review, Poetry Life and Times, VOICES (Education Project), Longfellow Literary Project, Poets Against the War,  among many others.)