By: Aakriti Kuntal
What is it there?
There– on that eloping side of the lip?
where the rivers seem to be conspiring
and a puddle exists in patience,
awaiting its arrival into the present
Your face is slowly fading
between the visible and the invisible,
your timeline -a jolt,
that stuns everything into a ring
a ring, a deep hollow ring
The building seems to shake from it
while the needles and bp machines
tremble into a colorful dance of beams
A sky, a sky- a bright, red sky
as if snatched from the very first kill
A sky, so red, between the going and the gone,
a veil gently lifting
Numbers lie best between fingers–
ordained music, catastrophic and flattened
Your numbers are fading
and your oval face protrudes like a rocket,
shooting into something
The zodiac between your eyes,
a most curious numbness
Your face is a rocket,
shooting into something,
a space that one cannot recognize
Is it death, is it death that you are after or life?
or is it something else altogether,
now that you have transformed
into an unlikely thing,
a thing between living and non-living
Is it a quiet place or is it loud, very loud?
I cannot decipher…
Tell me where does one head to at times like these?
Is there a pilgrimage between life and death
that one can roll in? A flower perhaps?
A tree? A tree? Branch, leaf, joy or grief?
Is it a stutter, a hum, a rhythm, wide and endless,
where everything is eaten but the echoes sing beautifully?
Is it a chord between all that is born and all that lays dead?
Is it another womb?
This one to finally bleed in.
Tell me, for I must know.
How else will I meet you, now that I’m dying?
Every day bodies are carried
I hum to the ambulance siren
as it slices the air
into particles, fine and coarse
While apathy is mastered over time,
it is a quality that just invades
one fine summer day
Then sits on the bronchia,
like mucus over infested toe-skin
I’ve seen it too well
on perfectly good men,
their sculpted faces too complacent for such anomalies
The eye of a disease
is round and round
I probe and find it leaking over sickle fingers
How strange that such a catastrophe
can derive from something so plain,
so aimless and primitive
I have the ENT doctor
waiting on the other side of the drive
I do not exist in his perimeter yet
I will not, ever
I am just one more living thing
He just one more doctor
The eye of a disease is round and round
You could stare at it
and never understand anything
Aakriti Kuntal is a young poet from Gurugram, India. Her work has been featured in Selcouth Station, The Hindu, Madras Courier, and Visual Verse among others. She was also awarded the Reuel International Prize 2017 for poetry and was a finalist for the RL Poetry Award 2018.