It was my mother’s fault that she birthed
Me on the banks of Kaveri
For try as they did they could not wash the black alluvial soil off my skin.
Little piece of coal my mother’s brother calls me
As he pretends he can’t spot me in the darkened birthing chamber
It sounds very cute when said in Tamil.
This one just got baked a little longer in the oven laughs my father when
My mother guiltily presents him with yet another daughter
One whose skin only a paddy farmer could love.
I am six when I am made to understand that
I who was proudly showing off my 99% in Maths was less than my best friend,
At least I’m fairer than you she says,
Sadly looking down at her own 73% marks
Raahat Ali hisses the epithet in class 3, that I…
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Always great to be up at Duane’s Poe🌴
The road is an arid breath
wheezing through barren boughs
I unpacked you on the green bed
My hair flying wild
Bees humming about silken valleys
We left together to explore the trail
of a dust-swept summer
Drunk bees still buzzed in hordes
till a flycatcher caught up with us
Your summer, a mirage
A shimmering wall of sorrow
Dry-eyed, I listened to its howl
They lamented in Nizwa and Sohar
yet you held your sorrow in
waiting for Khareef
The Hajar mountains twisted to get
a glimpse of tourists
fooled by bursts of paper blooms
Parched, we returned
A white eye of a flycatcher followed us
The wall wept then at my infecundity
But in my rucksac, carefully preserved roots lived
To soak in tap water at leisure
and bring forth a trail of sprouting greens
I smelt then
the base notes of a buried south-westerly monsoon
feeling buds of earthy love
from this land of hidden green
burst open beneath dry skin
© Reena Prasad
GloMag May 2016
Let one escape the net
It is best for you to be true, and practical,
Even if it means you are dull;
You should work hard and be sensible.
A lot of people depend on you,
And people are generally kind, and work for your benefit, too.
It is easy to understand this—and I do.
But if there is one who ventures, in silence, into gardens,
Who walks beside secluded lakes, or mountains, or fens,
Who dreams of poems in the chilly weather, while animals crouch in their dens,
Who smokes a cigarette, as the end of their fingers freeze,
Who takes pleasure in lonely outdoor walks because their own thoughts please,
Their own words a devotion converted from a life with no real care,
Can we allow one, at least, to go out there?
Thank you Rajnish Mishra
Titanic by Author Renee’ Drummond-Brown
Tired is as tired does. She floats on
carless streams; who knows no love. She floats on river-banks
giving her all to the poor. She floats on oceanic “blues”
of a dark history’s past
“SEEshores” + “SEEshells” – white beaches = black quicksand. She’s
not built to last. Duracell, ALKALINE and Energizer
keeps her going and going and going. CHARGE-she’s gone!
Can’t you “sea?” The saltwater pressures her blood
greater than the strength of them waterfalling hearts. She boils!
She boils!! She boils!!! And can’t hide!
Ain’t no pearls clamed inside. Can’t you “sea?”
Her lake’s shallow and parliament knee deep. They can’t
swim like she
and never did they learn. Can’t you “sea?”
Her army, her navy, her coastguard are the few, were the proud,
but in no way can withstand alone without THE marine!
Walking by faith
gets momma utterly exhausted…
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