And you tire yourself out relentlessly looking for answers, when all you have to do is rephrase the question
At rest at the master’s whim.
Some servants weren’t allowed at temples.
Also, ordinary enough to be unnoticed.
Hence, safely made to wait. Unguarded.
Monochrome movements on a wide glass screen-
A bright white sun, white robed delivery at a church.
Stooped black heads moving like ants in line,
But the chains were all human sized.
And the cloth sacks failed to hide whipped backs.
A long black train raced through the image noise,
Or maybe was its cause-
Exhaling black smoke along its way,
A thick burnt smell filled my thoughts
Mixed with blood and yellowed pages.
But let me breathe, unlike raging fire in marble hearths
At winter cities during lavish tours.
It let me breathe, unlike burnt red chillies in the neighbouring Granny’s kitchen.
Because, it was a story of the past,
And I was only watching black heads coughing at black smoke on a wide glass screen.
Via Daily Post: Delivery
No doctor, you can’t fathom the
Depth of this wound which,
Runs through my soul and
The blood smeared ball of muscle with
Both of which carry deoxygenated blood.
I have little hope from,
You, and the philanthropists who,
Offer to stitch my heart severed into two.
No doctor, I don’t doubt that,
You can’t heal my wound and
Also, a local anaesthesia wouldn’t do.
Via Daily Post: Local
I visited the house after several years,
This time, not to spend my holidays-
My grandfather died.
Nothing had changed, except,
The porch was covered in moss,
And the stream behind the house was thinner.
Cousins from London and Zurich and Paris laughed endlessly,
Overwhelmed to see each other.
They exchanged usernames as I sat alone on a wet rock by the stream,
Recalling an afternoon from my teenage holidays.
The heat on my cheeks when he held my hand,
Our wrinkled feet dipped in the ice cold water,
A sin enough to forget each other by the following summer.
I walked towards my grandfather’s house,
As night fell slowly like curtains dropping after a magic show,
Stopped abruptly at the entrance. Remembering,
At the funeral I had overheard my brothers and father’s brothers-
They said they’d sell the house,
Before it was completely covered in moss,
For that wouldn’t yield them money enough.
I know not if you will receive this letter, but I found some old papers to write on, and I have ample time.
You all have left years ago, and don’t intend to come back anymore. You live in places where stairs move on their own, and I have only seen trains do. Your skies are only covered with buildings. So you talk about your city, and never mention the village. And this house? Only a couple pillars and half a room along with a pile of rubble remain of what was once a mansion coated in lustre. Only I have remained here, as decayed as this brick baggage, and witnessed chunks of plaster crumble, the storeys give in. But the crisp gold sunlight still shows on the beautifully carved mermaid fountain, even though she has lost her nose, and one of her arms. The mango tree at the end of the courtyard occasionally gives me tiny unripe fruits. They are pretty useless, but help me recall how you all raced barefoot to collect plump mangoes during storms. I accidentally dropped a steel bowl the other day. The earful clank increased tenfold and echoed everywhere in the middle of the night. The sound was strangely familiar to the sound of cymbals, during Pujas. I loved the sound of cymbals as a child. It echoed in my brain until I drifted off to sleep, smelling the fire mixed with sandal, and camphor; dreaming of clay pots and vermilion. These days I seem to accidentally drop the small steel bowl more often as I walk in and out of my room, waiting for something to collapse.
Via Daily Prompt:-