[untitled] is a recollection of being stuck in a poetic loop. Days become odysseys, objects turn into portals, into memories and into longing. Feelings made lowercase as the poet follows through lost --- unable to find title neither to love nor pain.
(special acknowledgments to the coronavirus)
the sun filters in through stained-glass windows
over the illuminated kitchen counters, i see you.
the glistening reflection of your hazel eyes
the gentle swoon of your warm body on tuesdays
you stand in my kitchen and smile me out of the room.
in this mirage, i become your yellow sweater
and hug you hanging on to the threads, one to one
i become your deep brown belt and hold you tight—
hold you together as together we stand sunbathing.
the air smells of crisp apple pies and cheap red wine
through ephemeral hints of your wooden perfume
i turn around provoked—honey cinnamon and salt.
against my light wood cupboards, you hold me close
the soft touch of your lips feels a safe harbor found
and even as your image dissipated as i grasp the air
i feel your presence, your smell, your all, your me
and it lingers with me anytime i close my eyes.
fresh air seeps in through half-open windows
and the cold breeze dances around our bodies:
cherry lips over marble cake, tourmaline and salt.
the books watch over our melting silhouettes full
of us, caught between waves of blankets and yawns:
warm, sandalwood beaches and sweetened citrus.
each book tells the story of loving in another tone
stories of lovers past, hidden behind dusting shelves:
immersed in the rain and the smell of tangled hair.
your hands trace my chest in braille and i’m visible now:
each touch tells our story and i’m immersed again
in the smell, in your presence as I flicker the pages
and wonder if there is more to this than to be perused,
if our story can be kept in a novel, a pamphlet, a text
clickbait, designed to leave me hung up on the next chapter
it’s a good book, but the author decided there’s nothing
left to write, though the ink is still wet and the pen in hand,
the off-white pages left blank for me to imagine other tales
other than the ones we were too busy living to write down
and now, they’re lost.
it’s a good book, but it’s covered shut in indigo blue leather:
laughter caught in perfectly folded sheets and open shuts
the light hitting northeast just right every night before we kiss
all the things we had to fight over before, compromise, love
reduced to fiction, out of touch and foreign—
end of the world
as we know it:
but never enough.
would do it again
maybe caring less,
maybe attaching less
to the image of us
bodies on grey linen, open
like candy wrappers undone
our gaze intertwined, unspoken
like the reality that staying was good,
but we were never really going anywhere
but we didn’t have to anyway.
shadows under tulip hues, dancing
like on saturday mornings in the winter
our hands used to interlace, praying
like children wishing for sincere miracles
but they could not hold tight our minds
that kept on craving different dreams.
would live it again
maybe not needing 308 days
maybe not needing to fast,
to feast only on fantasies
of us staying together
just to realise we were never going
but we could have:
and our next metamorphosis
wouldn’t have to be the end.
when will the release come?
i miss wandering lost in the woods
only to be found across rose beds,
sandalwood scents of coral
and the worn down bench
where i confessed you my love,
if my arms weren’t cages in disguise
i’d walk straight down on quiet mornings blue
when the shades of mango paint june
regardless of the snow on the ground
and i’d never leave behind your eyes—
hazel, squinted in response to our saline
i miss moving just as that frail girl in silver
at the party we met, where only our gazes
could dance because we were keeping it low:
remember her feathers, her pacific smile, endless
free-swimming across her lips with no regrets?
i’ll never stop thanking myself before lying
for taking up her place in the chaise next to you,
when will you take me outside again?
i can feel the birds singing ella around me
but no more moonlights in Vermont, neither falls
harmonize with your hands on mine, everywhere
tracing elevations on my tanned skin and transpiring
chocolate caramel with himalayan salt as the colour
of turmeric skies merge our shadows into one universe,
i miss eating at the kitchen, especially in august
when the red-crake flew in to warn you about having
too much rosemary in your mac & cheese, it burned
and I sat down, legs crossed on maple wooden tables
unwrapping the chromed teapot i left you as a gift,
but you forgot to take it home with you in march
just as i forgot i had as much sway over you
as that red-chested bird.
if my legs wouldn’t keep me from running
back through the woods and back across time
to find refuge amid high oaks or over your chest,
i’d be less worried with the headlines
and would somehow mourn less not having served you
the peanut butter crumble recipe i learned from grandma,
and though you still have it on paper,
i’m not going back
to your body.
we’re distant again—no bus, no stolen dates, no smile,
no going back to going back time after time
high on the hopes that one day you’d change
until i did and then it was too late to reverse.
how many times does it take to write
the same poem to you two hundred times;
write it barebones and stretch it long
until it’s different and ever the same;
and though the poet is not the pain
throughout the verses they read the same;
endless, caught in days of wanton
desire for his story to unfold differently.
it is the poem that writes me now
consumed in repeating rhythms, rhymes;
the titles lowercase and dated
just to showcase the waiting that lingers;
the image of the seashore suspended mid-
sentence hints at this effort to stay afloat;
and when i grab a footing to finally end it
written again at the top of the page;
how many times does it take to have
the same conversation with you seven times;
have every time be the one over your bed
half-asleep, inquisitor, purple and deluded;
and whisper to yourself this time i'll let it go
only to find a poem next week saying that you stayed;
foolish, captured in some childish business
of longing for his fiction to ring true.
it is the poem that cheats me now
tracking my allegories, metaphors;
if you pit them against time, they blur
there is no start or finish under this stroke;
each thought of mine is animalistic,
cannibalistic, do you love me is that realistic;
or am i devising, dictating, tracing the you in us,
only ever alluded going anywhere;
how many verses, stanzas, dances, and shit
has it really been ten months since i fell for this;
the poems written long ago were less concrete
but somehow made more sense to the reader;
then the poet was violetear green and indigo blue
and flight was not avoiding never being enough;
safe, but whose verses still lacked that passion
destined only for honeycomb heartbreak.
it is the poems that free me now
from the dramatic irony of our poetic loop;
no more dark bus rides after six to find
nor deep burgundy sexual obsessions to make mine;
and every day now is just a day—no numbers
as there’s nothing to count towards anymore;
solace, mixed in wordplay and lost in commas,
ready to write a different poem.