Night

A pinch of stars

The words called me

I rinsed them with the left-over repression

And wondered if the sneeze she let out

Was a symphony of sympathy

For me?

 

I said god bless you

For he had ruined me

When I thought my heart, my love

Was made tender through a suspicion of affection.

 

‘Suspicion of affection’ are ghosts

That make you believe in unnatural things like:

Mother who loves her child

Father who sings lullabies

And a dire Jupiter pregnant with life.

 

Things turn upon themselves

And worlds are all upside down.

I fetishise one smile then,

When its tongue is smothered by suspicion of affection,

I let him caress me, indifferently,

If only to let the warmth out.

 

Picture credits: Laura Makabresku : “self-portrait with my dear Husband (Kraków, 2015)”

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Gardening 


How do I find time?

I left it under the potted plant

Where my neighbor bends upon to smell a flower

And asks me about the full moon. 

He says 

There is glory in the gardens of the others

But here, the slugs ate away all the bloom

And made it seven words shorter

From a love poem

You were willing to write. 

I fight the winds

And grasp his hand

I tell him, I am a gardener of words

–Often other than the unkempt personal pronouns–

I collate 

A bag of off-shoots

Till they look like they have eaten time 

Over which my neighbor once bent upon, sorry,

Right before I unmade him

And went to sleep. 

Image source: hiveminer

Law of attraction 


Of a neon glow

Traveling throug a space-tunneled gullet

Into a bloated starry sky

Where to each eye

Her own reality.
Billions of stars looking down from the sky.

Billions of eyes looking up to the sky.

 

Because she is never stationary

And always moving about like Van Gogh’s winds

Whenever I stretch out my finger into the cold dark night

She stretches in a great cosmic yawn

To caress my arms

Until we melt in our atomic marriage

Of neither star

Nor human.

 

Vanitas

Mariano Peccinetti, Mount Moon


As I must grow old 

And wilt

With the laws of gravity;

The horror is surreal

Of balding the moon off her throne

Into the sterile. 

How is that they must define us as a lack 

And in the same breath

Call the lands which could not bear the life

A null 

A void? 

So must I be

Either empty or full?

I wish I was easy as the glass. 

Natal

There walked the light into the mist. Intruding. A deep mustard shade—they put hatching babies under those. They glint every night in the nurse’s eyes. Behind her, a dark window. The windows are most silent and the nights always darker in a hospital. It is a night like this. It must be getting weaker, the streetlight under which I walked. The mist nestles around it. It looks like a phantom beehive. An old man’s beard. I walk into the violet color of the night that has dropped to the road. I am under it. I am above it. And if I turn my head back, there it will be again, the light being smothered. Am I a moth?

I am most certainly not. I am a curious girl and there are very busy men in front of me. These are the photographers. Sure they wear Paparazzi hats and raincoats, but they are not your regular ones. These are disciplined. They respect the night; they are the simple stars with twinkling flashlights. An elaborate machine, a pyramid. Each man with a camera covering his face. Anonymous. Inhuman. They face a cardboard door. One they put up at school annual days. I always wanted to go to an annual-day. Can I?

‘No. No women allowed.’

It is not an annual day. They have men inside the hall being not-men. Did you know that French used to have a grand carnival where they let out criminals and madmen and prostitutes. What does a carnival for men without their male society will look like? Nothing they would let me see.

I circle around. Waiting.

It begins. The photographers collapse. There is chaos. There are other people like me, circling around. I see my friend and she has to shout to make herself audible. How does it feel to be not behind your eyes? She makes me feel that way. Her hand is heavy on my neck. And the carnival inside is getting louder. There are all emotions present inside. Hysterical laughter, wailing, wrathful voices. But she must not let me see. There is blood inside. A pool of ketchup maybe, diluted with water. They are throwing it beyond the walls. It is flying in the air. She is saving me. Pushing me away. I want to fall it on me though. To wipe off the afternoon from me. It’s crashing. How can it crash? The spillage is heavy on our heads, as if from the sky. What are they doing? I scream.

‘They are enacting the womb’, someone says.

I stand in the night, no longer silent.

It is done.

There is only mirth inside the hall now. For the first time I can even see the barrier. They’ve dropped their curtains. They look like doctors after delivering a baby of a giant. There comes a man with blood dripping off like sweat, tailing under his hair. He is exceptionally charming. Awash. My friend knows him. They smile at each other in congratulations and stare at me. There are papers in his hand. He’s asking me for the toll. What toll I say?

‘For watching’

I am proud of understanding most things in my life. This was certainly not one. My friend accuses me of something I can no longer hear.

How do they win?

Through confusion.

 

I had to go. I had to go.

 

[Based on an actual dream]

Northern Winds

Jakub Schikaneder’s Snow (Twilight in Winter) 1899

Then

happened a soft autumn day

where I let my untamed foot fall

off the silk edge of my ordinary bed,

to let it fight with the tarnished wooden door

hunch-backed by a snoring inverter

when past the dust-coughing jail-skins,

there came a ruffle from the

dark of tall surmounting trees

necromanced

nodding outside,

breathing on my ankles,

in all oddity of the oncoming winter.

 

Then I had dug under the culture’s paws

Asked them, of what of the Winter gloom—

That gentleman

So languid upon my prickling skin,

In me,

He had protected life.

 

 

Now

There rests a diabolical caress

Of sandpaper bed-sheets

Till my feet are sore

From the coaling livers of the winter-verse.

Oh, to look for light switches in the dreadful dead-dark,

Paranoid chants that the curtains must not move—

All my sacred pathos intruded

Into the

Red demonstration of corpse-like darkness.

 

Do the old—as the Laker Poet once cried—must only lament what can no longer be felt?

 

Again

In my heart, I invite

The night

I had shut down my famished words

Again, a prayer

To be fertilized with meaning, I ink

I conjure up my sprite:

In the hearth of a breathing cold

The tepid haunt of a sea nymph

Misplaced

Upon one changing breeze of the earth

Colluding with mist,

Into a body of unknown

That I uncloak, even though I am dressed

In great perspiration

I try

Once again

to reclaim the night.

 

Author Notes

I had an epiphany just now. I actually had a dream about different models of ceiling fans today–funny that I must write a poem dictated by the winds.

‘Something watches and stirs in the dark, it is alive.’

A sublime affair

A space overcomes me

 

I was sitting beside the lemon detergents

When I slipped by my elbow

and found myself upon a cotton tree,

long killed by one milk-selling municipal lady

 

Upon the highest branch,

his hair became the dark of the clouds.

a sullen autumn around, afraid I looked.

Two hushed stars in his bottomless eyes,

and he said,

it was summer still.

 

Upon a grain of thunder, he sprawled like an ocean current

And gasping like the roar itself, gave out his steep palms

Out of which a waning lily coiled out,

a ladder escaping from his fingertips,

as if the guitarist’s chords

tied up by the hair of heaven

 

I gave my heart to this man who was no-man

But a space, that overcomes me.

 

Every rainy night,

as they say,

I forget to breathe

And in me lays the flower, finally awake.