Poem in Which

the cry of a cat yowls from the peacock’s throat in a desert of stone the hammer
of instruments on metal in this little street of magicians the din rolls like an
empty copper jar in circles her voice rises what slips away in the water is
her skin dark nipples rising between the fold of pink silk this mighty
voice ‘the sessions were short but there was pain where now is the
teacher whose first note will break your heart’ in a mixing studio
she stands the actress who plays the singer and watches the
grainy face her teeth rotten her eyes kohl-rimmed and
closed her voice the sail that will fill and fill and fill
if she stands there long enough she will be the
grain the sand rusting into her and down
the perilous steps
the boat

Sampurna Chattarji

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