senses: taste

Roasted words on my tongue taste of

Pepper, salt, chili

You

I cook them up in agony and blend it

Under my tongue, mixed with the saliva

Leaving specks of cubes stuck in my teeth

The same way I can’t rid myself

Of you

And the chai that I sip through after

Weeping in startled dreams all night long

To rise to the monsoon droplets on the window

Burns through the tongue

As my tongue burnt yours that night

When I spoke.

Now, I cook. I cook

I imitate recipes from all over the internet

My fingers cut from the sharp knifes

I mix in spices and herbs and cheeses

Cook meat over hot grills

But most often I find myself

Remembering the taste of you

And trying to plate it

I would eat with messy hands

What comes instead is the bitterness

The char of my words seared with blackness.

Your taste, I can’t recreate

My tongue refuses to recognise any other.

.

[Side note – I started a food blog: khanapalette.wordpress.com.]

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A little too familiar with death

I’m a little too familiar with death

No, not the pain

Not the tremor of turning into ash

But ive always believed

When a person dies, they’ve gone

To no longer realize that they are dead

But the ones who see a corpse turn white

Those are the ones who know

What death does

No, not what it means

What it does

When I turned eleven my parents were away

Maa slept next to me

Woke me up wishing me birthday

When I was fifteen I cried

I was in an alien place and I

Needed a touch that loved

But my mother wouldn’t come to me

No, she stayed with my maa

And I was so angry

I refused to speak with her

For weeks

The summer after when I went home

The clouds slipped from above

A car took me to the hospital

And my grandma was there

Because cancer sucks

A few months later

A night kept me up

I studied for my exam

Memorising bits and pieces

The other hand stroking maa’s head

And in a stupendous faze

That morning before school

I told her: I’m ready to let you go

Her fight had exhausted her

I didn’t know she would hear me

So when I came with a good grade

In a traffic that subdued the joy in my step

I saw maa lying there

She let go.

The little that remained I kept

Next to my heart, in my ribcage

Two years later

I let it go

She rose from the ground

Of my old house

In all her serenity

A good fight

No, a strong fight

And now, the whisk of it

Is coming back again

As nani lies on the bed

Of stagnant artificial oxygen

Exhaling empty medicine bottles

Her arms and legs I cant make out

Just yesterday she would cook me

The food that won her titles

And now recognition skips her

No, expression does

A reaction does

Something I’m craving

Ive seen it before

And I don’t want to again

The familiarity of death

Has struck me once

A punch gloved with nostalgia

Right on my left cheek

I can’t stop crying

I don’t want to let go

How selfish am I

I can’t stop crying

senses: touch

When I left the boy who liked me, I put behind the feeling like the universe was jealous
Of your eyes on me
The man who got inside of me next did not hold me
He did not kiss me softly to begin with, and look in my eyes
For what current the kiss brought over
He did not curl his hand, tilted, round my collarbone – gentle, possessive, passionate
His hands did not roam around my stomach in a soft tease before they settled
Where he wanted them planted
His lips travelled from down my neck to my breasts but could not
Trail it to my soul
There was no tickle as he breathed above my lower lip, biting it softly
The hair on the back of my neck did not rise as he whispered in my earlobe
His fingers did not deem the tiny black dot beneath my right breast as beautiful
Nor was the one close to my clit
When his fingers touched the inside of my leg, I did not feel
The hot mess you’d seen
I did not feel
Special
Uncontrollable
Loved
When he put himself inside me, there were so many things amiss
His eyes were not in mine but rolled upwards as he moaned, riddling out ecstacies
There was no free hand placed on the curve of my hip holding me up
All there was, was his ecstacy
And my epiphany
You told me I was beautiful – before, after, every time – just by looking into my eyes
He exclaimed, ‘fuck, that was hot’ and stabled his breathing
His breathing, oh his breathing, did not come close to the hitch in yours
Every time you held my hair a little tighter while you would cum
Every time you would touch me down and feel the pleasure as
Your name I sung out like poetry
Every time you wrapped your hand round my waist when I was asleep but restless
No, there was no hitch that shook my world with exuberance
All there was was lust and his fingers and my neck
and i realised
Never did i touch him the way I touched you
Never did i stroll my hands across his back, his shoulders, his muscles,
Committing the skin to memory
Never did i pull his hair back, teasing a little every time he was to kiss me
And then kiss him hard
Never did i stroke him with the gentle spin you loved
Never did i kiss him everywhere, singing just how perfect he was
Never did i make him feel special
The galaxy down to my knees when I was with you, and only a bed shriek every time afterwards
Is what it took to make me understand
Sex was nothing if not noticed, cared for, touched, yearned, felt
The passion that burst out of me, with you, never did with anyone
Replacement was far off the list, you you you
You were the touch I craved, you became the love i sheltered
And with you I felt ethereal
When I looked at you, I realised how delicate care is
All the purity I see now is you.

The ghosts behind reality

What would you say your dreams accounted for? Do you really sweat through the sheets when having a nightmare, or smile freshly when you find your paradise? I doubt.

Transition to dreaming has been the most weird thing for me. Nineteen years I was able to spend with no anguish in my escapades. It was sleep – pure and blissful. And then an entire cycle of daunting started.

Early in the midsummer heat were strokes not brought by absence of electricity

A fan buzzed to lull me to sleep, the ceiling curled with an toxicity

Situations in life that blacked me out with emblems of fear seeping in

I swear, caffeine overload is desirable over this nasty spell of dreamin’

Yesterday was a lady in the bathroom sitting over her own pee and writhing

Faced downwards her eyes pierced through, the bath felt the chill

Unacknowledged, that very fleshless hand shook out to steal whats mine

And I heard cracks down her skeleton my power got, her eyes turned to a carbine

A terrible dread encompassing all with what I kept sacred

But there it was: a dream of horrid realities and vast graves

Today was worse with train seats that sweat, none too close to a breeze

A man, unloving, I questioned of love, and in reply inhaled disease

Betrayal speaks no language beyond the fear already clouded in

‘Suspicious?’, God, no, only aghast of mortal sin

A terror that I’ve witnessed in action through my dreams – horrifying more often than not – is that through it all, I can actually read my own face in reaction to the information around me. The devastation apparent is so dreaded that it doesn’t wake me up with vapours of sweat on my pillow, but it fills me with so negative a vibe as to some twisted truth emerging from those very visuals.

Knowledge that I’ve gained through my very basic understanding of Psychology is that dream interpretation has vast scope, and holds sincerity. This is a subjective approach, for dreams that I face are the trepidations of my own belongings in sanity.

So it’s very clear: the apprehensions of situational existence produces suppressed emotions and reactions as dreams in those very moments.

I’ve attempted to converse to unleash monsters of repressed thought, but it just builds up my frustration over the uncontrollability of the entire episode.

The question now remains: how do I strengthen myself against powers I’m sending to destroy myself?