VOICES FROM THE FIRE: Kushal Poddar

Goodbye, Dream

 Near and far from the incarcerator,

and near and far from our brother

good memories ambush the rotten ones.

What are you burning to forget?

Everything between the zilches. 

Now the one is gone.

The code of the remembrance-

zero, zero and zero.

Did we remove all the metals from

his heart? Late evening crows scratch

the sky – that poorly polished firmament.

Atrophied

 My brother’s grief follows him

to his daybreak toilet

and to our kitchen filled with

claustrophobic aroma of coffee and bread.

                    Atrophied, I know him,

he grasps for anything that may

haul him by his senses, anything

like those scents, benevolent wrinkles

in the dark cliffs of pain.

The tune our mother has left free

in this household roams shedding

its tickling notes everywhere.

We sneeze a song. I put words

on the tune quite different

from those of my brother’s.

Bad Neighborhood

 From the penumbral cave

of one halted building

a bunch of eyes stare at me

still huffing and puffing

from a close encounter with rain.

I disappoint them – neither

a man with money nor

a dealer with crystals.

I have heard people take home

a pocketful of eyes and free

them in a glass cage with cookie crumbs

pollinated walls, and on the powerless

nights watch them light up

blinking good stories from a bad neighborhood.

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