Of Some Words & More

the eventuality of successive delay.

he keeps scattering me like birdseeds on the roads, on the twenty-third of every month, some couple hours before the sparrows wake up.

i memorize the crevices in the concrete, and he memorizes the cracks in my bones from where the corpses on his temple dug their way under my skin, and set up cities on top of cemeteries full of smoke that could just never break free of their own pyre. it’s like a routine we follow, such that Luna has about half a fortnight to forebear the consequences of her absence, before she leaves again. she keeps coming back for him though, and he keeps coming back for me, and i keep coming back for the feeling of feeling myself break every night just to be regathered right before the dawn drapes himself on top of an adulterous sky.

i lay there, some couple of thousands of lightyears under the skyline, waiting for little eclipses to tear through my lungs, to bury our verities under their beaks and for him to wrap their wings around his carotid pulse, to learn how to read a receding heartbeat with the minimal knowledge of braille.

i lay there, on the forenoon of the twenty-third of every month, like a clockwork missing time by seconds that never match.

he keeps scattering me like birdseeds on the roads, for dead birds that just never come.

••ra’ahe khayat

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to cross over unasked distances.

i tie our footprints into the dream-catchers
hanging off the beak of blackbirds,
that are on the verge of falling off
of an unconscious reverie
and into a sentient malaise,
over the way your irises decayed
around your pupils
when they descried skeletal love letters
dated upon northern wheatear bones.

••ra’ahe khayat

the routine sound of chipping ourselves.

we’re both nerves climbing over each other-

losing static each time we collapse,
losing pattern each time we rearrange,
losing memory each time we let go.

we forget.

i hold on to the threads
resembling those wrapped around your throat,
as if they might crawl
the amplitude of your voice
crushed under distance
with the same desperation with which
i sew them into my skin.

but it’s there-
somewhere;
a flicker of a sound
that bled right out of your ghost
and into the marrow of my bones.

it echoes-
ceaselessly,
carelessly,
almost as if it isn’t losing itself
each time it collides inside me.

almost as if i’m not
losing you.

••ra’ahe khayat

NEWS ALERT!

Sorry for such a dramatic title, I promise that this is a temporary post.

So, over the last few weeks, I have been thinking that I need to start using a new name, because apparently Ari Purkayastha isn’t very easily concealed. I won’t go into the details of why I don’t like to use my real name, but I just don’t like people I know to know that I write. Even if it is occasionally. For me, my writing is very private, and I cannot share it with anyone with a face. And for people to walk up to me and talk to me about my writing is a nightmare I don’t wanna relieve. “Ari Purkayastha” is a part of my real name, that I just shorten.

So basically, I’ll be changing my name completely, and will be writing under a pen name. I’ve thought a lot over this, and honestly it is not easy for me to do, and I understand that it’s not easy for my readers either to start seeing poems/proses from a stranger on my blog. Which is why I am posting this, so that my regular readers don’t get confused and start thinking that my blog has been taken over by someone else. I will be going back and changing the names on all the poems on the blog within this week, and I really hope that you all support me.

The name I’ll be writing under is Ra’ahe Khayat.

In Urdu, Raahe means roads, and Khayat means weaver. I loved the entire implication of the name, so there you go, my reason for choosing it. I hope you don’t mind, because the mind behind the words will be the same, even if the name changes, and that is literally as far as I can go from my original name.

Here is the facebook link to my profile, if anyone wants to connect with me: https://www.facebook.com/raahe.khayat

Thank you,

Ra’ahe.

of that lie that never mattered.

of all the things you could’ve lied about, you lied about the one thing that never would’ve changed with the truth- of how i could always be the one sleeping in your arms, but we both would still be spending our nights between the legs of loneliness; of how i could always be your lover, but we both would always be in love with the way our hearts beat alone in our chests, unconcerned with the rhythm of another; of how you always curl your hands around my neck, never knowing if you’re suffocating me or the solitude that hangs around me like a dress whose collar ends at the cliff of my chin- that you knot around your neck like a tie- too formal to ever be comfortable in, too familiar to ever to ever let go of.

of all the things you could’ve lied about, you lied about how deserted we both were holding hands that strained to get lost in a crowd full of unrecognizable strangers.

••ari purkayastha

the palace, the hospital, and the museum.

the palace.

you have grown into the habit of walking out,
and grown out of the habit of sneaking past the door
when we slept-
because you were convinced
that the walls slammed into our bones
hard enough to make us sick.

you used to think of every coincidence
as fate.

i don’t know what you think of anymore.

these last few years,
you’ve been leaving too many footprints
on the floors
from the number of times
you’ve almost walked out,
because the seasons were seeping through the ceiling
and you’ve been away for far too long
to remember how to
adapt.

the hospital.

we keep painting everything in white
the night
before you come back-

because apparently,
it’s tragic for new tables to have old mats,
but not nearly as much as
for old faces to have new feelings.

the museum.

the thing about hatred is that
it festers-
you can smoke a pack of cigarettes,
build it a necropolis on the branches
of your bronchi, and then
let the city mourn in a year long winter
with violent snowstorms
that rip your trachea out of it’s ground,

and still,
hatred will kill your cells faster
than the cold.

you have stuffed every brick in my body
with the feeling that comes
from never being understood,
and painted it on your tongue
like a mural
hungry for plaudits.

you brought tsunamis crashing into my muscles,
seismic waves rippling under my skin,
where the tectonic plates don’t just
slam into each other,
but skewer through.

some globes make for a much better map-
especially those
with oceans bleeding out through
the rips in the eyelids.

some people make for a much better centerpiece-
especially those
who you’ve already spent years chiseling slowly,
until the only thing holding them upright
was the fear of
falling.

you’ve become a connoisseur of sorts-
collecting our silences disguised
as obedience.

you’ve become something
in the name of being someone else,
and i’ve become just another
mistaken effigy with a broken mouth
screaming at you
to throw me out.

••ari purkayastha


for the person i respect, and the person i resent.

the things that find sound in the quiet.

we are used to finding closure
in the way the years
come closer to us,
on those drugged out nights
when all i can ever truly miss
is the taste of misery
on your fingertips.

i remember,
i used to pray for the single sound of silence
shattering in my voice box;
but it was far too quiet.
too quiet to hear your chest stutter
under my palms,
and too quiet to let go of the sound
of your footsteps that always
walked away.

sometimes,
the lack of a voice really does cage you
inside a room where nothing
ever fades away.

not even the loud incessant bangings of sorrow
on the fragile walls.

••ari purkayastha

crescent.

The ageless stars fall,
and I fall right along with them.
How could I not?
When even they bow
to your majestic beauty;
that to gaze upon you once
they readily renounce,
of their angelic statures,
and fall..

How come one,
as luminescent as you-
came into my
light-less night?
Drowning me in your
candescent breath of life,
you finally made me see
the hidden beauty of ardor.

Your lunar essence,
awakens my soul,
just for it to drift away into
the astral presence
of your ever watching gaze,
so that when ever I feel lost,
or hopeless, and drown into the darkness,
you shine just a little bit brighter
and illuminate my core.

Your grandiose, even the seraphs envy,
because albeit your scars
and imperfections,
you are still
the most captivating being,
that I have ever cohered with.
For like a crescent moon at night
in midst of a million constellations,
you make me fall,
and I fall,
just like the stars..

••ari purkayastha


because the last one was too rough, i wanted to give you something pretty. it’s a piece i had written a couple of years ago, when everything was a lot more simpler, and i was an idealist, instead of a cynic. and when cliche did not make me cringe lol.

god is dead.

god is dead.

he died seven years ago, on the streets of mumbai- hit by a car, while he stumbled on the sidewalks, mumbling all sorts of obsolescent prayers, as the meth in his veins slowly bestrewed his significance on those half eaten concrete roads, that wrapped itself like a ragged hand-me-down scarf, around a city standing on human bones.

his body lay there for three days before it was discovered by a fisher-maid, setting up her baits, trying to catch skeletons that had somehow learned to float in just that layer of water that was reserved for the living. she never screamed. she never did anything, but walk to a nearby cigarette shop- that sold faux maturity to eleven-years-olds for just a measly price of 5 rupees (or if you were short on the money, you could always pay with the excess of the cells in your lungs), and picked up the half-broken telephone that had gone out-of-date some twenty years ago, to call men who had seen far too many bodies- in more states of decay than a lifelong sexton.

it lay there for another hour- unsupervised- before moving shadows started crowding around it with judgemental eyes, that knew more about him, than he probably ever did. there were more stories on his sullen skin than his tongue ever let on; stories full of naivete, hope and failure. stories that could probably rob the world of another century of hunting answers, in pages written by men a lot less learned than those seeking them.

but he never spoke.

those answers, and those questions, and their answers- they all gradually lost their pallor as the blood drained out of him during his postmortem. they declared that he had overdosed. that he would have died, even if the car hadn’t bashed his head in. that he had been dying long before he finally did. that he had cancer harvesting in his heart. that he was probably suicidal, because his hands looked like they had been a brutal war-ground, where the only winner were those who were not breathing. they said his wrists looked just like the humans he was rumored to have created- scarred and failed. he was depressed, they said.

his face was in the newspapers for eighteen days, waiting to be claimed- in news articles read desperately, only by desperate family members of desperately lost people, who were more conversant about themselves than the rest, to actually advertise that they were indeed lost, and in need of help.

on the twenty-first day, they burned him in a pit with rest of the homeless corpses- no one recognized him.

no children.
no wife.
no family.
no name.

no one knew what god looked like after all.

••ari purkayastha


i’m not trying to make a statement. it’s merely an idea. religion has nothing to do with this essay.

stay.

stay-

like you have stayed in all my anonymous letters, to anonymous strangers living in an anonymous world.

stay-

like the cracks on our bodies don’t bother you anymore than they bother me; like the regrets on my skin don’t fuck apathy into yours, when you get more intimate with luna than you are with me. like you haven’t been hiding my paintings under train tracks, because that is the closest you come to committing suicide, without ever feeling your bones break under the weight of people who move on faster than your wrists can lose it’s pulse.

stay-

like the sand isn’t silting over your eyelids, like it isn’t forming scars that would take ten million lifetimes- with lifelines that have been broken into ten different times, to form ten intricate types of breathing patterns that would still collapse into the same singularity- to even out with the rest of your skin.

stay-

like i haven’t been pressing prayers into your palms, when the planets momentarily loose their anatomy to the wild mourning of a widowed star, grieving the twin that has over-dosed on the distance that comes with being free from gravity. like a heart-attack is just another riot in your chest from bones being held in too tightly (you can only increase the density so much, before everything falls in or falls away).

stay-

like i haven’t been kissing every millimeter of your neck, just to feel your voice cords snap under my lips, because sometimes, it hurts more when you are prepared to talk, just to watch the the color in my pupils scatter, than when you remain silent to hear me scream out every reason that keeps me from whispering your name.

stay-

like the thought of leaving breaks your heart, more than it could ever break mine.

••ari purkayastha