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A voluptuous orange tastes

Like life to the tongue. Then follows

A swoon. A rock shifts trembling

From an earthquake. Hold me then,

My goddess, or I will fall –

To the temptations of my friend’s

Beautiful wife. I am a juggler and

A fire eater: I relish –

The juice of pomegranates.


Do not  try me, I fall easily. I have

No strength beyond the poet’s sullen gaze.

My morality is a little frayed

At the edges. I am beyond pretense.

And the quarantine worsens my appetite

And my desolation.


So there! I have fled from reason, and nestle

From this elevation where I see God

In the hints of the cleavages

Of sacred mountains. I have died the death

Of the dreamer dreaming of their contours.

The burning beds have silkworms

Writhing with the lightning bolts

That come from revelations, and a little cognac,

And invocations that free the will

From the iron-cagemade by Semitic gods.


Tie me to my posts then, before I leap

That immortal leap of the panther, caged

By decree, to a postmodern Zoo. To stray

Is not good for my health. Nor is to step

Out of the doors into the ravenous noon

Of an epidemic. But one’s hunger is stronger

Than one: and if I am to stray, there will be

The bolt, to root the yam from its base.

This city is agog with moans. There is

The epidemic of dark desire –

Which they say is from Wuhan. Shield me then

My goddess: but if your hands are heavy

With too many supplicants, guide me gently

To my fall, and where I fall, let the roots

Spring, to hold the bole of the Iroko.


Date: December 24, 2021

LitWrite Bangladesh is a blind peer-reviewed online biannual journal published by AstuteHorse

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