Ignorant

The chandeliers hanging from your ear lobes

swing back and forth violently.

They kiss your neck,

and your shoulders,

and the fragrant air that lingers over your collarbones;

they touch and they go and my heart aches of nostalgia

because you did the same.

 

Oh, aren’t you tempestuous?

 

I strum the strings of my guitar

until my fingers know the colour of your lips,

but the tinkling chandeliers

chant choirs of independence,

and the last fluid puff of smoke

of your last lipstick stained cigarette

spells out d e m o c r a c y.

 

Aren’t you…

 

I howl into the moonless night

but it takes till dawn to reach you;

dawn, when you hum while making a cup of tea

for your hung-over father,

and it becomes a whisper

in front of his groans,

when you draw back the curtains and unleash

the stringent rays of mustard sunshine upon him.

 

Aren’t…

 

Alas! I sigh,

and rebellious of my reluctance,

my sighs caress wind chimes and falling leaves

as they leave in pursuit of you,

but by then you already are deafened

by symphonies of yourself being others’ muse,

and they all come rushing back,

and they mess up my hair,

and in a breath my fingertips are singed

with their radioactive agony.

 

Aren’t I…

 

The chandeliers are violent again

I’ve been listening, but you don’t hear.

 

Oh, aren’t I still lost in your tempest?

 

 

 

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For a Change

Let’s give a day off to the sun; let’s call it Sunday.

 

For it is only in the darkness that we will realize that our

toenails are full of confetti.

Our scars will make love to our birthmarks and moonshine will leak

From behind our ears.

And the dark circles upon our cheekbones will reveal

a quality of phosphorescence.

Our elbows will twinkle and their follicles will tell us a secret –

they are made up of fairy dust (shhhh…)

The crevices between our feet and the grass, will emit

all shades of white neon,

and we will leave footprints of powder yellow florescence upon

the surface of water.

Our souls will prance above our heads and change colour when they touch another one,

and we will carry shadows of pastel light dancing on the black surface of land,

and every unlit part of our bodies will get a chance to shine

for we only recognize the light within us

when there is sheer ink around us.

 

So let’s give a day off to the moon; let’s call it Monday.

Let’s tell the heavens to put out the lights,

and for a change,

let’s shine for the skies tonight.

 

Each and Every

If you choose to love –

every fallen hair as the first petal of a dying daisy,

each second toe longer than the big one

as a race between two raindrops on a window,

each sparse eyebrow as an unfilled page of a coloring book,

every visible vein as lightening a second before thunder,

each skinny wrist as a branch of a maple tree in autumn,

each blackish-brown eye as the full moon in full bloom,

each uneven cheek as freshly upturned land,

and

every piece of incomplete, abandoned, crossed out poetry

as a wonderland to explore,

if you choose to love me for all the common uniqueness I bear, I will believe in love again.

If You Would

 

Would you care to come and sit next to me?

 

Because we could be old school, wearing shirts with cuff sleeves

on which our hearts would be the cufflinks.

And we could romanticize the color of death on leaves,

you could hold my hand, and we could fall in love with mortality.

 

We could be romantics, dancing to indie music blaring from your car

with the headlights bathing us in midnight sunshine.

And we could laugh ourselves silly trying to roll the perfect cigar;

I could let you keep the lighter, and I would save the ashes as memoirs.

 

We could be hardcore, flushing down the toilet vomit and rose-petals,

ruining reflections with streaks of terrorizing agony.

We could finally let our abandoned passions scream into the lull;

you could be broke, I could be broken, and we could be the earthly celestial.

 

We could sit on the wall next to the airport, and watch flights and landings all day

and,

we could fall in love.

 

So tell me, would you care?

 

Steam

Steam, woman, steam.

 

Like a cup of tea

with tulsi leaves.

Like the glass of milk on a wedding night,

yellow with haldi.

Like hot iron pressed upon a saree.

Like the bubbling, simmering pot of kheer,

the taste of which measures the worth of your existence

while you stand behind a curtain

 and watch the men eat greedily.

Steam away woman, steam

Like the choo choo train meant only to carry.

Like hot water that takes off oily sheen

from his clothes and his plates and everything else you clean.

Like the output of a geyser you turn on at 5 every morning

for the man of the house to shower luxuriously.

Woman, steam.

Like vapor that rises but cannot be seen.

Like the atmosphere in a pressure cooker spurting out screams.

Like the insides of a sauna in which you sit, suffocating,

only so that nothing separates your bones from skin,

to make you fit into his fantasy.

Steam.

In the bedroom with nothing covering your body,

spreading out your legs like you spread the table for dinner every night,

only for him to satisfy his needs.

In the only hour of the day when you’re allowed to breathe

and that too only to assure him of his masculinity.

 

Don’t you dare think

you are known for what you hold within.

A world where you’re not supposed to be sexy

will exist in nothing but your dreams.

And if you ever live to see the revolution

make sure until then

you look ‘hot’,

make sure until then,

you steam.

 

 

 

 

Un-torn

You know how I was ripped to pieces,

when you left?

Let me tell you the tale of embroidery.

 

Once upon a sorrowful existence,

an existence that witnessed the presence

of your love

only to later bear somehow with the absence of it,

I decided to never let another soul,

another’s inside come even as near as to touch my outside,

I decided to never let another soul touch even my skin.

 

Once upon a sorrowful existence,

watching your footprints lead, and leave, into the horizon,

my psyche deconstructed into pieces with fraying edges,

as if your love was an unseen strength that fabricated

my entire existence.

Of course my thoughts were bound by cowardice,

I couldn’t afford to be reduced to shreds.

 

Once upon a sorrowful existence,

I told myself I couldn’t deal with being walked in on, and walked out of,

again.

Apparently, upon the same sorrowful existence,

I also realized that a ripped cloth

could only be sewed

if it’s brave enough to withstand the piercing of a needle,

inside, outside, and

through its weaves.

 

So then, upon a transitional existence,

I let them in, the masses, with their threads of colors

that my mind didn’t even know how to procure,

and I let them go, leaving behind little stitches,

till the pieces of

my inner self

were no longer hanging off the edges of my bed.

 

And now, upon this gorgeous existence,

I take the needle in my hand and etch upon my skin, the story of my existence – the tale of

embroidery.

Too Brave to Burn

If fire could crash upon land like waves do –

It is her, and only her, who could conjure

and dismiss the blaze

as if it were a mere symphony.

It is she, and only she, who could walk

barefoot on the seashore

as if it wasn’t smitten with destruction.

Only her, who could stand

unfaltered with singed toes

as if the flames had left love bites.

Only she, who could gaze

at the tempestuous flickering

as if it resembled twilight-ish hues.

If fire could rise and fall like tides do –

She was the only one brave enough to still love the ocean,

for her body knew soot better than a cremated corpse,

and her heart beat at the rate of a hundred explosions a minute.