Harleen Kaur, Proiti Seal Acharya
Piece by Proiti Seal Acharya. Image titled “Wanderlust” by Harleen Kaur.
Calamity resides in calmness-
My childhood bedsheets,
Cartoon in their belligerent insistence
On the necessities of happiness
Appear as grotesques honesties
In the middle of my night
While I try to operate within reason
And the ecstasies of fleshly solitude-
I negotiate with calamity
As it rests its feet on my arched back
Hoping to sting me
At the base of my spine
So that I may buckle at the sight
Of hope in its precocious performance.
Assessing the longevity
Of my skin, the silent curtain,
The roughened apron over
This mortal sludge-
Calamity infiltrates the prisons
Engineered in my brain
By memory’s greatest weapon- words.
Calamity parses the sentences,
Dream after dream I writhe-
Only to find, in the greyish light of early dawn,
The parts of speech hanging limp
At the edge of an eternal crevice-
My mouth as it was in yours.