Lisa Ray: Poems

Lisa Ray: Poems
Lisa Ray portraits by Farrokh Chothia
Actress Lisa Ray, a covert writer, dons many hats. She had a serendipitous career in entertainment arts  spanning multiple countries, films and modelling. She has started her own yoga studio and a line of ethical  perfume. Her poems explore themes derived from an  identity-bending, nomadic experiences, the culmination of a life of no fixed address 

The Fallen

I’ve been staring
at a fallen photo in my bedroom.
a week
and I still haven’t picked it up
and set it back
where it stood before.
I can see the right corner of the frame
wedged behind the bureau
like the ankle of a man buried in earthquake rubble.
but there was no earthquake here
in my bedroom.
so how did it fall?
and now fallen
perhaps it should stay
the way of all things that have come into the world before
and fallen
like armies and ideals, Communism and the American Empire.
like my youth.
there’s just something I suppose. 
a broken, plunging wish,
in all the unpickable things.


Is there a way
to talk of the sun
without invoking the moon?
Love without loss,
Desire without despair,
          without hope.
Arrival without departure.
What follows
         can’t be easily ignored.
If life is an act of 
Don’t forget —
every considered step,
          and how well you have fallen down.


I did not come here in a car like everyone else
I arrived like the howl
of a goddess striking a priest.
All the varieties of pain
couldn’t harm my features
                            couldn’t make them plain
or stop my wanton fingers
stretching over bowls of rice and Polish veal
from living many lives at once.
But still they never see
the glow of Sarnath in my skin
or a Calcutta chromosome
in my narrow green eyes
                             You come from ice
they insist.
                             You are shapely but not like us.
and it makes me burn enough to incinerate
all the flags
binding my face and their eyes.

The Gift

The magic lives
outside what is known.
in the reclusive bay where fishermen bathe.
This I’ve always known.
And it’s very encouraging
               when people don’t understand you.
               there are many things not worth knowing.
Like ‘why a ten percent surcharge?’
while a tree outside quietly grows.
Talk not to me of inoffensive things,
or the way you hide
behind your crowd-pleasing lives,
or why it’s unsafe to travel.
No, I want to hear
the last time your heart was massaged by fingers of delight
or when you found pieces of yourself in broken pottery
or climbed a volcano
                 and did not tell.
If you change the topic to tell where you get your hair done —
I’ll smile.
I may not be brave enough to be despised
but I won’t give you the gift
                of my wild, unknowing heart.

Unraked Shores

there was never a thought
to protect you from how the world works
or from the furnace
of your desires

victory is found
a jade pendant
sold for a month’s rent
and retrieved
from beneath a lover’s

there was this shore
and that
a preview of sunset
to draw a line under your day


nothing rests at
angles at odds with

no more echoes
from unraked shores
touching the limits 
of our courage 

A Bud in Reverse

When I see time 
(Speaking through)
sinking into my father
(plate washing, mouth slack) 
his gentle face drawing in
(A bud in reverse) 
his touch so light
(Prairie grass in the Fall)
and his eyes focused on the distance
(the colour of the world before sight)
I want to tell time


I have seen enough
I leave the room 
trailing scraps of feeling, heart full of embers
sketching grief in my pillow

When I return he is smiling
to sip a cup of tea 
with Time. 

And it’s my understanding
which is amber 
which is a potted plant
a whiplashed bird
a calloused heart

Needing light

And his love 
My love 
The mollifying dance between father and daughter
can bring me to my knees
(the heart of me)

to bow to beautiful decay
and then I’m smitten
(burnt amber/wings unfolded/cracked pot/3page love letter

because some day we’ll all be gone

but our whirl of tenderness will go on and on


I was walking towards my mother
When I saw tires on my feet
But the deep deep tracks
          on the trail
Prevented my retreat.
So up I turned to look
To find guidance in the sky
And promptly hit a rumblestrip
And fell upon my side.
And when I awoke
A pug before my eyes
A mushroom ripened in my throat
Before I realized
My wheels had gotten tangled
In the roots of this fable
How unkind, how unkind
To corset your mind
         said the Pug
And disguise your pain like Abel
I cried out for my mother
But she wants to return to the sea.
So love and attachment entwined in my chest.
I let her go, reluctantly.

Donate Now


*Comments will be moderated
U r just perfect
Shahana khan
Aug 1, 2018 at 10:23
Lisa Ray,Tus poemas reflejan la belleza y sencibilidad propios de un ser nica como t
Flor Maria
May 18, 2018 at 12:44
Feb 26, 2018 at 08:42