Roots Of Despair


banyan-tree-on-old-cutler-road-stephen-mack
The banyan grows either way
catching the sun and sky within its leafy trough
while uncombed, knotted; its unruly hair
searches for a soil
Some days it grows in me
pushing its gnarled apologies
out through my chest
wind-milling them all around me
till I am breathless
‘Roots must never be bared’
it whispers

If you uncover yourselves
to the extent of your roots,
you lay a double trap
He fumbles-out of his depth
and proceeds to weed you up
digging fresh pits to push you in
to accommodate your history

No matter how deep your roots have burrowed
or despite how many break in the struggle
to hold on to the remembered earth
he is proud of his newest rose bush
and while death creeps up soft upon you
from under the ground
sapping your greens of vitality
spreading the stench of regret,
he expects you to hold up your end
with your blooms intact
though the soil fails to force feed your stricken gut
and the earthworms slink away
from your black, tangled rot of despair
©Reena Prasad

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