Lines erased, less than
form. No breath or shiver
stirs my doppelgänger. This void
of corridors leads nowhere, though
I can hear the sound of doors opening, closing.
Smiles fall away to unease.
The light concentrated, refracted by
so small an aperture, becomes brilliant,
losing its object to radiance.
There are discourses of the spectral,
the numinous in which, it seems,
I exist in parentheses.
Tears and sweat accessorised.
My body, sensual, without culture
bears no initial.
colonised by language.
There are those who admire the geometry,
these metaphors of space.
Be elevated, they advise. Take in the air,
the uncommon with the requisite.
What is ethics? Not smugness
or complacency. Not prescription.
Nothing, which is not political.
The afternoon cruises,
after badminton, lemonade
and chutney sandwiches.
Voices are like ribbon made
for unwrapping the past.
Syllables of imaginary laughter
blend with the real, as I recall
the warmth of uncles, aunts, cousins
left behind in foreign cities,
Mumbai, London, Goa.
I think of the bright day when dad
flew our kite on Primrose Hill.
It’s hard to say what matters.
defers to time’s calibrations,
the long shadows are deceptive.
I piggy-back my daughter
in summer’s leaf-light.
We swim laps in tandem
riding a pink foam noodle, sinking fast,
her tiny arms a choker for my neck.
I’m weak to her commands, her tears.
In any competition, I must lose.
The dragonfly’s flight is a tease
never kissing its reflection,
a cross stitch lacing the pool.
The distant hum of the freeway
sounds like a hole in the heart,
the softest turbulence.
The garden is a green humidicrib.
Tiny holes in the sand
made of the creeping
punched in the darkness—
excavations crabs shuttle,
fugitive worms, ectomorphs
who escape the pump.
Is it the sea that flushes away
the darkness of holes?
fine-drawn, a tireless flow
of liquid, spray, ice.
All this shell is memory—
purling the dark cerulean.
at whose insistence do
you sing beyond words?
Water glissando, the inchoate
waves fugue, unfetter
to pulverise a salty grammar
sargassum, slapped and stray.
A trio of barnacle, rose, kelp—
the littoral is cold adagio.
Or sometimes the blue ice creaks
dimly sounding its name.