Fresh Wounds

By Sochuiwon Priscilla Khapai


Jackson Pollock’s 1953 painting, ‘Portrait and a Dream’ 

[For my friends, for our passage through this forest dark]

The words could flow
if we made it stay
attuned to the rhythm
of real life moving,
but to what end?
Time never tells

only trickles to tickle
the ache of longing
drawn out steady
to the calls of desire
sometimes merry
mostly dreary

Still
so much to say
that passes unseen
so much intimacy
in potent silence —
so much lightness
and tenderness
and innocence
Lost

to the meadows of youth
slipping by
eddying low
finding refuge?
maybe
against life, which emerges
untimely and weary
of new dreams forming,
yet no meaning foaming
off of its failures;
tiny, ephemeral, plenty
liquid air and languid
floating past the madness
but only in my mind.
What else did you expect?

so go ahead and read it anyway
T.S. Eliot
and muse over his sky
Ezra Pound
and muse over his density
Gertrude Stein
and muse over her ambition
Emily Dickinson
and muse over her purity
Baudelaire
and muse over his freedom
but also,
Keats and Whitman and Shakespeare
To fall in love again
with life as with people.

Then eat some
fresh cookies with almond milk
and speak of the poets
and their lyric
Lerner’s lyric
that entails
A negative lyric.
Read
with beloved friends
and newfound solitudes
They —
that will grow steady with time
and merge with your sorrows
relations accrued
as in Noguchi’s stones
Or, what he saw in them.

Begin again
with mom and dad
Begin again
like yoko and john
Begin again
despite the pain
Begin again
with all these fuck ups

Forgive them all.

Finally,
Leave it out to dry
all these fresh wounds ⸺
and paint them over

Sochuiwon Priscilla Khapai has recently completed a Master’s in English at the Centre for English Studies (SL), Jawaharlal Nehru University. She also has a Bachelor’s degree in Physics (Hons) from Miranda House, University of Delhi. She is interested in modern & contemporary poetry and aesthetics, more generally, the relation between language and the visual arts: Ekphrasis. She is planning to pursue further studies in English Literature and hopefully teach someday. 

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