farewell to a city
the trees are lush and gold-tipped under the november sun.
in a fever dream. here, sparrows make caches in the construction-site
dust, heads inearth. there, a cousin or two broke speed against
the footpath. clavicle fractures. sharp, like pain, like a scream,
like a leave-taking, comes all at once. crawl into life holding
scissors, holding knives, only to find that strangers cut from
the secrets humanity carries form shells around nothingness. build
memory in a vacuum, breathe it, fall in love with it, bury it.
the magic of this place is that there is none. the streets are
empty, all the way up to the main flyover. perhaps in fifty years
a metamorphosis will lose sight of the road home. and from
a hotel window, this city will be the stranger.
if you knew how to love, would this be love? if you knew
how to hate. in the evening, the vendors will pull aside
the tarpaulins and sell sweaters to passers by. crows will
fly to roost. you will forget this poem. make a lover
and a liar of another city.
the word home slips out of its meaning. close your eyes,
landing in the airport. you will not know the difference.
Lakshmi Mitra is a 20 year old college student living in Kolkata. She has been published in The Rising Phoenix Review, The Fem, and Words Dance among others. She blogs at thiswinterheart.tumblr.com