fourteen years and a half.

my rhythm,

fourteen years and a half has passed
yet somewhere your beat
still resonates,
for i remain not much
but a collection of stories
bound in a novel of erased memories.


you echo.

i remember neither the sound of your laughter,
nor the way you whispered my name.

or how ever our air bent to collect your voice
and deliver, the cherished baritone
of your lips,
unscathed and treasured
within my years

for i like a fool, failed to revere words,
whose absence today
haunts me.


you pulsate.

we remain truly torn
yet i find myself tangled in these strings,
bearing the throb of your veins
like a drum, rolling upon my skin,

and i shiver for those million whips
osculate the blood within,
and they rise
to match your tempo.


you reverberate.

an autumn wind
beats against barren branches
whence no leaves dance to,
and I am engulfed by
every drop of water
that floods the floors with faces,
albeit faceless.

a remnant of facade within the
fresh rusted leaves,
underneath the rugged roots.


you recur.

your palette.
my canvas.
and your fingers,
that brushed my face
to our evenings,

are mere verses- that whisper through
my headphones today-

of our partings, as the sun set
and the dusk danced
to our farewells.

i weep tearless sorrows
when i look at crayons,
for i recall with warm recollection
how you sketched my smiles
-that the clock charcoaled-
and breathed life
through your fingertips,
while i massacred those irrelevant outlines
with both my hands.

you laughed

i hid my face in your neck.

my hair tickled your paints,
and you shaded me.


you resound.

every throb of time
is a cruel reminiscence of those hours
when the cold air wrapped
those murky mornings,
and you stood on our bridge
minutes before school.

your bones enfolded mine,
and the prosaic bricks
baked into auburn cobblestones.

those touches were scorched in my iris.


you resonate.

within the moonlit drizzle,
every thought of mine
is drenched with the fire
by the frosted memories
that cascade upon our
guileless childhood

and i raise my wrist
to the roaring showers,
letting the thunders
slip in my veins.


you replay.

fourteen years and a half has passed,
and today your phantom has
become the rhythm
my thoughts beat to.


your fallen.


••ari purkayastha

some lost trinkets of ours are learning to speak.

you remind me of entire worlds
still talking in sign-language;

of a time when the only way to communicate
was by tracing every fold on your forehead
with my nose-
like a love letter written in

we spoke much like the stars do
from a distance of a million miles-
by bending the light around our lips,
and watching it get lost
in a stranger’s hair.

your words are still searching for
a semblance of familiarity
on my tongue.


••ari purkayastha

a love note to my hallucinations.


you’re growing over me like a wound-
a song i just can’t let leave my lips, so you remain
within me,
trapped without a name;

without anything more than a recognition-


you age into me-

something like a prayer
that is sacrificing itself over the altar of
a distant probability of being called

something like a curse that escapes my lungs
in violent shapes of your name,
before shattering into the hollow
of my voice-
still bleeding on the ground
from the time
wild-sparrows screamed for you on my tongue;

something like a memory
that is crying in the corners of my pelvis
between silent gasps of the evening-
when your footprints curl into themselves
as Luna lays her breast to my spine;

something like a betrayal
that you press into my skin,
every time another atheist is hanged at
the cross;

something like the breath
stolen from the chest
of my corpse.


you die inside of me like an afterthought-
between two decades, and a
fractured reverie.

••ari purkayastha

something without a say.

“i’m empty-
like a virgin womb,
dead inside.”


i have nothing for you today.

no words to hastily scribble on coffee stained papers and tuck into the pockets of your life- that you could pull out and read at a bus stand when it’s raining too loud for the moon to hear you scream, or throw away when it gets too crowded with little folded pieces of long numbers full of short affairs.

no poems to press into your skin when the winter gets so lasting, that you begin to forget the shape of the silence growing through your veins.

there’s a lot of silence.

too many minutes filled with nothing but hesitant colloquies and unhesitant farewells, and just a few without the paralysed longing.


••ari purkayastha

we were straight lines hooked at the beginning.

there were phone-calls
we both ignored,
when the flights took off
and we left for a country
that was lost in the translation from
words to distances.

one of yours kept trembling on my elbows,
when i leaned over
to watch the sky scatter on the ground-
like a bird that was fluttering
with wounded wings.

i never took off towards you again.

we just kept travelling
until the maps abruptly ended,
and we remained hanging onto each other
by a flimsy excuse of
a latitude.


••ari purkayastha

where eyes beat for hearts.

there are bones under your bed-
whole skeletons with no hearts,
but eyes that blink
seventy-two times in a minute.

they’re closer to your hands
on nights when
your fingertips hang on to a
doorknob, that bleeds every time
it’s turned to let someone

someone is always walking out.

there’s too much blood
for a heart to pump
and still flutter
in anticipation of
another breath


••ari purkayastha

bleeding waves.

          Lying upon the winds
          whirling like cascading hurricanes,
          I tether on the edge of memories;
          tied to the depths of past
          while my fingers bleed upon the blades of the present,
          with feet sinking into the sands-
          wet from the sorrow that wept through the ages.

          I remember,
          the way your eyes were filled with the novas.
          the galaxies could not contain
          their ephemeral luminescence,
          that traveled across the endless space of nothing
          in hopes of illuminating
          my obsidian existence.
          And I remember,
          the way those stars shattered into stardust;
          their shine devoured by the rough rust
          of my world.

          Reading the mirror
          reflected by the skies today
          I can see your lover’s image in them.
          A cruel lover of your misery,
          who had sewn shut the wounds
          after ripping apart your skin
          to bury a grenade of horrors
          within your shell.
          Would you forgive me?
          I ask to those birds,
          in whose form you escaped my cage.
          For they were your kin, you thought;
          trapped into the same bleak chains
          that bound you to me,
          those infinite loops of false promises
          that you broke,
          embracing your freedom,
          in the arms of my loneliness.

          And I still am shackled
          to this ocean bed, where my tears have flooded
          the reality of our distance.
          My eyes fixed upon the horizon,
          watching your sun set for the last time,
          and the dusk streak with blood of our remains
          as I stood there by the shores,
          the water weeping unshed tears
          while you melt away
          into the waves..

••ari purkayastha

there’s a price to pay for all the times you’ve fought her.

she was a penny that had fallen
out of your drunken fingers
each time you paused on your walk
back to the apartment where
you stashed a lifetime of ephialtes
in cramped suitcases,
and haunted corners.

she was the change you remember
to forget as you stumble on lampposts
 when the clouds shield Luna from your fists,
and your back pockets lurch in protest
to all the letters folded inside them.

she was that little dollar you earned
when you sold off
an old vintage photograph of a girl
in a wedding gown reciting poetry,
to a sculptor-
because you knew,
some bones are rather turned to stones
than remembered as ashes.

she was the cost of forever
that you failed to pay,
so now you live in small debts
and smaller deaths
watching the full moon in eclipse
 half the night, for quarter of each month .


••ari purkayastha


Lilt of memories
evanesce into the night,
that is born of my death
like a withered feather.
I am the ghost of a rose
blooming in the heart of an obsidian moon,
upon the soul of a fading star.

Scars weep with stories, yet to be unfolded
while I just linger in this ageless agony.
And akin to an abandoned violin
that plays to a phantom presence,
I strum in a theater of nothingness.

Broken piano.
Broken keys.
Will there be something left of me?
When the darkness stops singing,
will I ever sing again?
For my strings are torn, with bleeding edges
while the notes have erupted in a dead symphony,
floating with the remnants
of a long forgotten music,
dancing to the cadence of sorrow..

Taking what is yet to decay,
and embracing the unknown,
shadows light in the eye,
while I crest into the waves of breathless verse.
And my soul whispers eternal words;
words that have lived inside of me,
spoken, never aloud,
yet they thrive, and grow,
like the tears of a widow,
who refuses to believe.

Ink stains the pages,
with the blood of my age,
and the letters drip with woe.
But my mind is free of it’s shattered mirrors-
those tormenting shackles long gone.
And with a haunting
ballad blown to the breeze
I look at the harmony of the befalling dawn.


••ari purkayastha

the night silence whimpered on my skin.

when you spend decades
counting the small scratches
on the tiles of the halls of a hospital
where time seems to age exponentially-
you begin to believe
that death has its hands
playing with jagged coins
as they flip over voicelessly,
(yet louder than your heartbeat)
into the air
that was already suffocating with tragedy.

footsteps begin to morph into lullabies,
because after all,
a human mind teaches itself
to fall asleep to half known predictions
and quarter known facts.

you become hollow,
and the hall echoes your prayers-
yet nothing is ever heard.

••ari purkayastha