A Poem At The Grocery Store

This is a poem.

This poem begins with the sound of
A grocer’s fingers on his grey calculator
Tapping swiftly, yet softly, creating
Sounds that outlast the conversations of
Customers in the aisles buying
Canned tomato soup and happy memories.

This is a poem.

This poem follows the customers through the
Grocery store, overhearing phone-calls and
Irrelevant banter, situating itself in-between the
Mundane lives of people who spend their
Thursday nights purchasing fresh fruit.

This is a poem.

This poem ends with silence, the kind of
Silence that fills the cashier’s desk at exactly
9:00 pm every night, when the store empties
Itself of all traceable sources of human noise,
And the grey calculator sits, waiting for the
Grocer to come in the next morning.

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The Chasm

For the times the world lit up like a
Magic lantern, when the sun glowed like a
Blanket of fireflies and embers, covering the
Past, present, and future in a sheet of light.
For the times the water stayed still like a
Seven-year old’s unassuming conscience.
For the times the air whispered words of
Magic and misadventure, luring people into
Its arms, until they swayed with the sound of the
Breeze, sideways, upwards, and into the earth,
Into the deep chasms of the dry land.

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Etymology

“Where do your words come from?”, she asked, as we
Discussed the evolution and devolution of language.
“Where do your words come from?”, she asked, as I
Opened the dictionary at the local library.

“My words come from the soft nuances of
Childhood”, I told her, “From the sizzle of the
Pan as my mother cooked breakfast, from the
Loud footsteps of my father, as he stumbled down the
Stairs. From the way my grandmother told me about
Her childhood friends who now hesitate to
Communicate with her.”

“My words come from my travels through
Time and space”, I told her, “From the coloured houses of
Uruguay to the crowded roads of Bombay. From the
Harsh symphonies of traffic to the eerie silence on
Empty train rides on window seats.”

And as I went home, that day, I could feel the
Snap-crushes of spices that reverberated through my house.
I could feel the crowds as I tried to navigate through
Abandoned buildings and new coffee-shops. And for the
First time, I could trace my words back to a map of
Human experience.

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Living With Yourself

If your soul is a white rabbit,
Let it travel through the stars and
The skies and let it reach the
Gilded gates of Wonderland.
If your soul is a wolf, let your
Hair loose, let your mind
Escape itself, and let it
Howl until the moon disappears beneath
Honeyed clouds and silver linings.
If your soul is a faraway planet,
Do not try and restrict it to
Your orbit, but instead, let it
Revolve in its own right, beyond your
Modest ideas of revolution.

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These Hands

These hands, that are very
Much like your hands are
Folded like neat sheets of
That paisley wallpaper that
Reminds you of your
Grandparent’s house and
They are kept tucked in
Beneath teak and moss to
Cover their woody veins and
These hands, that are very
Much like your hands are
Terrified that someday, soon, you
Will know that they are calling and
These hands shrug off their
Doubt and try to erase their
Lines because they are
Afraid that they already know a little
Too much.

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Storied Lives

Stories grow up faster than
People, sometimes, and its not
Uncommon that the fairy-tale you
Read when you were seven will
Someday become a commentary on
Loss and longing, and this can be
Frightening and cruel in equal
Portions, because who knew that
The confines of a book could store
Enough life to evolve through
Epochs and eras foretold?

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The Sorrows of Alchemy

My father was an alchemist.

My father was an alchemist and I
Spent my childhood on the
Cornerstones of creation and
Combination, and I learnt that
The far can be as near as I
Want it to be.

My father was an alchemist and I
Spent my teenage years with a
Locket made of silver and
Platinum and half-formed
Dreams that were too impure to
Turn into diadems.

My father was an alchemist and I
Spent my adulthood looking for
The elixir of life and longevity, only to
Lose my mind in an endless pool of
Metal and tarnished regret.
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Paper Planes

Let the houses turn smaller and
Smaller, as you sit back in your seat and
Watch the roads and streets and narrow
Winding paths evolve into tangible
Motifs that look like emblems of a
Past blurred with the makings of a
Future, and let the sparse air welcome
You into the home of clouds and
Lightning, where mellow blues dance in
Short-lived trances of rain and thunder, and
As you watch the world in fleeting moments, let
Your eyes swim with the infinite parallax of
Movement, let your mind glide with instances
Waiting to happen, and let your journey
Transcend way past your ideas of home.
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The Lies Life Tells You

All existence is not simply
Matter in motion, but instead,
A subtle cacophony of
Consonance and congruence,
Intersecting the lines of
Life and love and lament in
Repetitive patterns that make
Sense the minute they vanish, and
All existence is not simply
Matter in motion, but instead,
An everlasting cry into empty
Space, a cry that resonates in
Innocuous glances and quietude, and
All existence is not simply
Matter in motion, but instead,
It is the energy that ties us down and
Liberates us, seemingly all at once.

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The Lightness

(Part 3 of the Single Sentence Series)

When you leave your desk and bed unkempt and all your textbooks and receipts and post-its on the floor and walk out of your room and out of your house and through the gate to the sidewalk you will feel a lightness that cannot be described in similes or aphorisms or metaphors but simply a lightness that will take your thoughts and waft away with them through the cool evening breeze and as you walk around your house and the garden that you used to spend the sunny days of your childhood in you will look at the sky above the geometric abstractions of your existence and as the hues change from pale yellow to orange to dark crimson the people and houses and gardens around you will slowly illuminate in soft rhythms of consonance until the places and spaces around you will almost urge you to radiate in their presence but at this precise moment that you will check your watch and realise that you have errands to run and work to do and the lightness that inhabited you will sink under the boulders of your being.

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