Seclusion cuts my brain, sectors carved on parchment paper
I enter the circle, legs bound, inward and backward, pigmented swans in the backyard,
their color reduced to an adulterated egg white

The wounds of swirling butter, run like darkness,
A source without a source, an end without an end,
Their saltiness erasing matter from time
I have arrived once again into the cleaved mouths of the beaver
His wide jaw, 
my fingers poking, collecting the saliva
of a thousand dead things that shouldn't be, fluctuating lives under permeable thumbs 

I have arrived, my face picking the painted head
of backward clocks, tar and ink, reels bleeding beneath the nose
Here it is that death lurks 
like a coward beneath the doormat
Here it is that men quiver and animals scurry
Where the end seizes the neck, a lamenting corpse
yearning for its own funeral

I have arrived on single foot
Running my fingers through her vividly knotted hair
I have arrived where the children die, where hope is strangulated,
where Santa slips and where kites are desecrated
Every day inside human rooms
and on war streets 
I have arrived, once again, where humanity shows its first face
to the streaming dusk of childhood

Image and poem © Aakriti Kuntal

2 thoughts on “An Adulterated Bevy of Swans

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