Poem 277 ± March 7, 2016

Nalini Priyadarshni

You are a world
that existed long before I was born
flourishing unseen between agony and apathy
until your veins of gold distract me
entice me to explore
the raging cataclysm beneath my flesh

I fall in step with nonchalant stories
you illustrated my limbs with
each time we sit together
working each detail with deft strokes and bold colours
and they come alive to tell tales of times yet to come

We speak of this and that as you discard my old tattoos
and replace them with deep reds and peacock blues
but never once bring ourselves to talk about sandglass
that sits in silence midst us, holding us for a ransom
I memorize iris of your eyes and beer on your breath
let my skin stretch a bit to make room for more souvenirs.

Ever a nebula across centuries
we wait to collapse
I meditate on now and here
you conjure new worlds into existence.


Nalini PriyadarshniNalini Priyadarshni is the author of the poetry collection Doppelgänger In My House, forthcoming in 2016. Her work has appeared in Up the Staircase Weekly, eFiction India, Mad Swirl, Camel Saloon, Lipstickparty mag, Tanka Undertow, Locution Mag, Earl of Plaid, In-flight, and other journals, as well as in a number of anthologies including I Am Woman (FCM Publishing, 2013), developed by the I Am Woman campaign led by Victoria Watson. Nalini lives in India with her husband and two children.

This poem is not previously published.