The Stone Chat by Taufiq Rafat Text



The beautiful is beautiful anyway,

So why embellish it with words.

The eye, too long used to green

And fruitful movement, is parched

For a desert beneficence, seeking

Subtleties where none seem to exist.

For instance, in Jhelum’s eroded hills

Where we have stopped for a moment to

Relieve ourselves. They always remind me

Of a village crone,  too seamed and bedridden

To be of value, yet somehow lingering on,

Still spitting out the occasional proverb.

Surfeit has cloyed my vision. To understand

This waste, I must try and know myself

As I must once have been, and become,

And become, why even be…even

If I have to become …that, that stone-chat there,

Almost lost against the no-color background.

I would have missed him, but for his tail

Vibrating with excitement. He hops up the slope,

Held in place by a slab of sunlight,

To a ridiculous terrace of wheat

Which does not seem worth the tending.

Once there, to burst into song. Never

Was anything so eager to survive!

Intolerant of excuse, he calls

This place home, has learnt to distinguish

Between the various shades of grey

Till the neighborhood is a riot of color,

And a ragged patch of wheat sufficient

Cause to be mellifluous about.

The summary and Analysis of this Poem is Here 


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  1. It was a really interesting and enthralling poem

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