Dwindling Footfalls - Poem by Pinaki Dewan
He sings like a night washed in turmeric, holy in its indifference. He is clean and jostled by wild waves, while she is all white-fingers and hell-stench. She can never reach the sea to stifle that last hope clutched in her white-fist. The floor screams smut, but she stands on the bed. She always finds a corner, he is always out in the open, taking in all the brine-sodden breeze. The moth never did reach the insides of its orb.
The cocoon has cracked; the skin alloyed with the dirt. This ridiculous stutter of shoes makes me retch. Bring the seidel. I want to move. Move perpetually like the jar or the poem in its stillness.
The dripping cliff knows it can never commit suicide. It drips its angst in blue and grey. But the wrists have clotted. Coagulated like tits or balls. Or whatever your perverted mind can conceive. And there is no escape from suffocation.
The blue walls fret like a little girl waiting for her daddy on birthday eve. But there is only a smile. Hovering in the honesty of the dusk. The naked trees mark the eyes, lachrymose but without the glitter. The gaze shifts: the river sparkling under the succumbing sun.
The disgrace is so new, it slaps the window twice. You can never look out for anything. Not even yourself.
And there are footsteps outside. Smothered, not echoing. And while the grief sojourns, the pillow forgets to dream.
The man stands in front of the mirror, hoping for an intimate exchange. But no, he is too desolate for philosophy.
‘You either steal or get stolen' says Max in a frenzy.
‘People tend to have a high opinion of their own opinions' Alfred sighs.
Alfred and Max walk out of the hotel into the fog. They are gone. We can only assume they are no more. But the fog smudges all assumptions.
It is dusty even in winter. The wind rots like a fan covered in a year's worth of grime. She calls out. He calls out to the sky. And nothing is heard. Nothing ever needs to be heard. The ants scatter and dwindle and die.
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