Pillars


I have seen Heroes
Shinning alone on the battlefield
Sword bare in bloodied hands
Hiding tears behind their shield
And the poets who wrote of courage
Knew not from those sunlit tower
That all wars are fought by them
Who has no ounce of power

I have seen Teachers
Cradling books in their velvet hand
Certain of the wisdom beneath the words
That the world fails to withstand
And the pupils who stay blind
And believe in it all
Are kept to learn the truth
Nailed as paintings upon the wall

I have seen Kings
Holding heaven in their earthly palms
Dive deep in the selfish seas
And make fist while breathing alms
And the people who praise the lord
For the health of the dear monarch
Knows not that the hand which feeds
Is the one that lays the nark

I have seen Saints
Swimming in the grey, tepid pool alone
And where hundreds had fallen
The saints could never drown
A miracle that belonged to them
Not by the blessings of the Throne
But because of the fact that the misery
Was not of their own

The Shadow Of Absent Things


I can smell the brown sugar
Melting in my tea pot
And I am rooted
Between two oak trees
Made immovable
By the stone lips oaring my depths
Reaching for the sky silhouetted against me
But the ache of it does not feel like tooth decay
Nor the pleasure makes me shiver and rain
Glass beads and spirit of grain
Into the hands of praying men

I can feel my skin
Breathing under your fingernails
Like snail on a hot tar road
While your voice in my ear
Whisper garbage
Something about me, my hair,
My face and the rest
Of me but not about
As if your eyes are nothing but mirror
Or old shoes spit polished this morning
And my heart wanders like flies on foodstuffs
Unable to digest
The truth of you touching me
In and beyond
Anymore

Steel on the tip of my tongue
Marble on the base of my back
I am pierced and pinned to the pedestal
A naked butterfly
At once transparent and tarnished
Bruised, battered and bludgeoned into being;
Beautiful sans beauty

So I stare like a light bulb numb in its holder:
The roof is blank
A grey slate
False sky
Absent mind
White chessboard
And the omniscient blind

Vestiges

Dear,
I know it is too late to write
It’s midnight here too, the sun is lying dead at the bottom of the ocean
With the dry lipstick caps
You left.
I rinsed their marks off the sink you know,
The bold maroon, the autumn orange and the pink of summer blossoms
I hope you are wearing something else now
A colour I could never know; otherwise all the bite marks you left
Like a river of pain
From the nape of my neck to the small of my back
Dividing me; amongst myself
Would be futile.

See! No you cannot, but I am, seeing
The stars, do you know they are long gone
And the light that we are looking at
Is no more true than those promises we made
In bed, everyday
Looking at each other
Melting under the red haze of love
Or else I would not be alone
Straddled between both lampshades
Stretched midst two lights
And the same, same darkness
Shifting me out of sight

And yet, oh yet I miss
You with your half asleep smile
Carefully constructed
To be dreamlike
I miss the time when we were us
Shared shadows in the day
And in night our silhouettes
I miss your half baked cake
And bitter burnt coffee
With me humming the song
You love at three; in the morning
Watching just watching
Nothing at all
But the same thing
Always the same

There was a time when I used to write for you
When I should have written about,
But I was naive; eggshell white,
A crystal goblet balanced upon the edge of a two-legged table
Drunk with my own wine
And I know the fault was mine
As ever the fault was mine
Flowers wilted and the fault was mine
Winter came and the fault was mine
Nothing remained
Everything changed
It began again
And the fault was mine
And so I am no more
Than a corpse carrying out a chore
Dreaming of a world before
It broke upon my door
Oh yes well before
I even built the door…

The Lost Sense of Bewilderment

Jayson Hinrichsen @ unsplash

I wonder if life would have been the same
If I had but a different name
As common as the monsoon rain
Somewhere between John and Jane

I wonder who would have called me close
Gifted whiskey or a blood red rose
Shared laughter with a list of woes
And left me where the west wind blows

I wonder if I would have been happy more
Being a seashell on a shallow shore
Drunk with madness like never before
Following the echo of my silent roar

I wonder if I would have lived long
Sang a chorus in some choir song
Before in life it all went wrong
For now I am but not where I belong…

The Aroma of Sadness


I look at the wrong things and cry
But tears are taboo, aren’t they?
Like used razors or sandpaper towel
Or the last page of a living novel
And yet I do, not because I cannot avert my eyes
From the still beauty
Subdued by time
But that I would witness
In those aching final ages
Filled with long and random sunlight
My disappearance
Into wet satin
And gossamer ash
Of original nothingness

If fire could speak of pain
And water too of how it feels to suffocate
Beneath the weight
Of drowning men
They would
But flesh cannot heal the sky
Nor blood fill a river dry
For all thoughtful fantasies are unwritten tragedies
Beginning at birth
And only deepening when you die

So I weep for the ocean of sadness
Clenched inside my throat
I pray for the lambs sheltered
In the veins of my battered boat
And I yearn to leave the answers
With my back against the dying day
To rest amidst the sleeping shepherds
For I have nothing more to say…

Taste of Sunlight

Image by Riccardo Mion on unsplash


My bed is in the corner
Of an empty room
The irony is self imposed
But not without reason
I have heard that darkness
Gathers more in the deep
And perhaps it shall help me sleep
Faster than dying by lying wide awake
Counting seconds, falling and rising
With time’s unreceding tide.

The curtain hanging by my bedside
Often flutters in the night
And it’s breath though purposeless
Fills me with envy
By it’s act of pure motion
Sans a shred of emotion
How can I be more than me
When everything I seek I deny to see?

Dreams; they die, my own are no exception
Even when I have them
Caged behind a glass case
Cuddled in red velvet
Caressed by Mozart’s Sonatas
The flowers shall wilt, roots die and fruits decay
Nature by nature of unrequitance
Shall swallow none but one’s own
For birds do not nest on trees unsown
And those that I watch from the moonlit window
They shimmer and shine
Like gold and wine
Broken; yes and crooked and white
But they know unlike me the taste of sunlight.