the cat sits there digging its claws into the linty mattress,
she drowsily dumps her head on the floor;
pinned against the knots in air –
like a dull mustard painting waiting to be sold
in those dimly lit indie art houses;
i keep nauseating myself across the house,
an oversaturated painting
that the artist keeps washing off.
I throw myself into the ocean
so there’s no uncertainty of picking the right floors.
my eyes sit still like marbles,
madness doesn’t always descend quietly,
or with screams; sometimes it grows louder on your face,
while you watch it shackle up your fingers;
mirrors etched on all four walls crumble into smithereens
with hysterical sighs. my eyes wobble through the hourglass,
digging sanity in wayward sand;
the dead are chained to their graves,
i build cells in my brain and paint them pink,
as if gilded shackles don’t clink;
i keep materialising all this grief,
stuff it in briefcases to dinner time etiquettes.
so it wont settle on my bones.
still air, shivering shroud
on a tablecloth, at dinner we mince our veins.
i hover over the word joy,
squishing my fingers in between the letters;
till i hang the word upside down-
i seal the envelope in blood,
lest i forget who’s grief am i carrying;
most days it looks like the thin slice of dust on my desk;
i don’t do my bed so it stays there on the lints.
the ceiling wants to break open half the days,
or fall down; whatever it is, catharsis has its ways;
pink isn’t soft, it’s a child hardened with scarlet fever,
while the nurse patiently hemmed the shroud
with her own pleats;
cat’s in the cradle,
eighteen pencils circle in a levitating staircase.
her soft still fur just pinches my skin;
so does the sound of the neighbourhood couple
jesting like rancid pieces of cake.
i violently stuff myself with air,
to keep my borrowed statutory sanity;
pale envelopes spoil themselves
but i don’t know where to start with this rot.
poetry is a snob with forks and knives
cross legged across the white tablecloth;
water tastes like paraffin wax that i gobble down,
still reluctantly, compulsively staring at the cat-
she didn’t have a halo,
but looking at her made me want to chop off my eyes;
such an angel, I like looking, as long as it doesn’t look back-
these goddamned poems always do.

meenal jhajharia

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