Souren Mondal

Gold Star - 31,436 Points (10th November 1991 / Chandannagar)

Red Dot - Poem by Souren Mondal

Home is where I feel unsafe,
dwelling in the poison of
Nicotine filled air,
I smoke the cancer stick,
I smoke your memories,
your lies

And the false dreams that you
made me see,

And I hear your face,
with that smile of a five year old,
it echoes inside me forever,
runs through my veins,

and pours down on the
white marble floor...


The room is dark,
The door and windows are closed,
The last cigarette is burning,
hanging precariously
from the left corner of my
dark lips,
almost finished
a small red dot in the dark...

Home is where I feel unsafe,
dwelling in your memories.

Home is where I feel safe,
Drowning down in darkness with an
unseen fog of cigarette smoke,
and a faint, dismal, yet visible red dot.

Topic(s) of this poem: death


Comments about Red Dot by Souren Mondal

  • Bharati Nayak (4/9/2016 12:03:00 PM)


    A powerful write describing a situation where a person is beyond his control to extricate himself from a feeling of gloom or darkness- - -It surrounds him with fear that he will die out of suffocation.But he can not help but be there in that darkness- - - -It is the Home where he feels unsafe- - But in the last stanza he says Home is where I feel safe - - - - He feels unsafe under oppressing memories and finds safety in release from that oppression, red dot symbolizing a glimmer of hope. (Report) Reply

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  • Susan Williams (4/8/2016 5:37:00 PM)


    This is film noire in the world of poetry. I expect Humphrey Bogart to cross the stage any moment, angrily smoking that eternal cigarette of his while his mind is tied in knots around Lauren Bacall. Extremely well written poem! (Report) Reply

  • Valsa George (11/15/2015 11:28:00 PM)


    I see the protagonist of this poem burning down like a cigarette in the smog of memories of a failed relationship! He is deriving a kind of sadistic pleasure as he is inhaling even the last puff from the butt of the cigar! Even when knowing that he is in a blind alley, he doesn't make a conscious effort to liberate himself from this suffocating situation or has it grown in him as an addiction from which he can never free himself! A great write, indeed! A 10 (Report) Reply

    Souren Mondal Souren Mondal (11/15/2015 11:42:00 PM)

    Thank you very much ma'am... Yes, sometimes we reach a point where we just cease to care about our pains and rather just acquise that it is this pain that keeps us alive...

  • Sanjukta Nag (10/26/2015 2:53:00 AM)


    Darkness of death has covered the room and the heart of a lover, yet his senses are working still to hear the face of his lady love. Wonderful use of metaphor. The whole poem is draped with melancholy that left an impression on the reader's heart. Great write! Beyond rating.. (Report) Reply

    Souren Mondal Souren Mondal (10/27/2015 12:50:00 AM)

    Thanks Sanjukta :)

  • Pamela Sinicrope (10/8/2015 8:15:00 AM)


    This is a powerful poem! It's also well written. I've noticed you have a pattern of repeating certain phrases and words in your writing. In this poem, you repeat the words 'home, ' and allude to cigarettes. This convention leads the reader to your themes. The opening line, 'Home is where I feel unsafe, ' goes against or contrary to what home is supposed to be. You further illustrate this point when you say that home is where you smoke the 'cancer stick.' Home is sick.. What is home? You repeat again that 'home is unsafe, ' dwelling in your memories. There is a 'you' in this poem. Who is the you that you are addressing? Is this a younger you or a sibling or someone else? You leave this open to interpretation, so that could be up to the reader... I appreciate poetry that is open to multiple interpretations. Finally, another repeated theme is the red dot in the dark... In the dark poem, all we 'see' is the red dot of the cancer stick.... Powerful poem. Your writing is very strong. This is an excellent poem.

    One question...why do you 'hear' your face? I didn't get that one? Thanks for sharing!
    (Report) Reply

    Souren Mondal Souren Mondal (10/8/2015 8:54:00 AM)

    Thank you very much for commenting so kindly on my poem.. Here the 'you' can mean anything, but when I wrote it I wanted to convey two meanings with it - a) a woman whose memories haunts the speaker b) The memories themselves, almost as a living 'creature' or 'monster' that haunts the speaker.. Or, it can be anything as the reader feels, a ghost or anything that may haunt someone..

    The idea of saying that 'I hear your face' came into my since I felt that the speaker is in a dark room and can see nothing, but only feel the presence of someone else in there - the 'you' - - so, she/he can only 'hear' the face of her/his 'memories' - there's nothing visual out here, but the speaker's auditory senses are almost making her/him 'see' things.. It is all in her or his mind. If I were to interpret this poem, I would have said that the entire poem is a metaphor for a person struck in the 'darkness' of her or his memories and the home has become a prison, from where she or he wants to escape, but has no means of doing so... It's about being trapped in one's own mind.. The prison is imaginary, the chains are imaginary, everything is imaginary.. And I would like to add that the poem is an interpretation of sorts of Kafka's Before the Law in The Trial... It's all in our hands, to suffer or not to suffer, as Budha said Pain is inevitable but suffering is optional.. All I wanted to show was the helplessness of a person in 'darkness'.. It's all in the mind...

    I hope that answers your questions..

    P: S: I have been secretly reading your poems and they are beautiful :)

  • Daniel Brick (9/29/2015 2:46:00 PM)


    The red dot of the cigarette is a surprisingly effective image. Its light does NOT dispel the darkness; it's an activity that is ultimately unsatisfying, but irresistable. And those three things apply to the woman you dream about. She too
    cannot be resisted, but waiting for her to respond positively is disatisfying, thus she does not dispel the darkness of life. And the ONE THING all our friendships and loves must do is brighten our lives. But I doubt the speaker of this poem is ready to let go of her. He knows the truth of the situation but the emotional ties cannot be cut - yet. The speaker is playing a waiting game until his heart catches up with his mind. And you describe that waiting vividly.
    (Report) Reply

    Souren Mondal Souren Mondal (9/29/2015 11:58:00 PM)

    It is the exact thing. You see both cigarette and ond sided love are dangerous to health.. However, neither the smoker nor the lover is capable of quiting, or at least quiting easily. Both of them know that it's harmful, to both body and soul, and yet they continue.. It's the gradual, if I say, destruction or decay of one's persona that both of them are willingly indulging in.. Sometimes, we fail to understand that.. The speaker here is in a 'transition' so to say, where he is in an awkward situation. He wants to let go, but both nicotine and the beloved's memories have become a part of his blood.. They run in his veins, and he knows he has 'purge' himself, but then 'purgation' can only come when the person gets a 'catharsis' from 'pity and terror'. But this 'pity and terror' are now his life and his dilemma is whether he should let go of his life? Would that mean anything? No, it won't. But should he then hold on? Would that mean anything? Again, the answer is no! So, he needs to find something affirmative, something worthy to give meaning to his life, but he is not bold enough! His soul, alas! Is not bold - - he is not ready to say that he would turn his 'pains into pure pleasure', because he is yet not able to cultivate the ability to accept the gift that the daemon bestowed him with at his birth - stoicism and positive thinking in right dose.. He is not accepting that he can move on lest his endeavour lead him to a similar crisis...

    P: S: Thank you very much for commenting on my poem sir. I am honoured that you said that I've written this well :)

  • Fabrizio Frosini (9/24/2015 12:39:00 PM)


    I've enjoyed your write, Souren. It has a full poetic musicality.. even in its sadness..
    reading your verse, some passages from my good friend Daniel Brick's poetry surfaced on my mind.. I invite you to read them: Poems At Port Trakl - Part One and Two - by Daniel Brick

    Blessings
    (Report) Reply

    Souren Mondal Souren Mondal (9/24/2015 7:26:00 PM)

    I surely will read them sir..

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Poem Submitted: Wednesday, September 23, 2015



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