Calcutta, Crow

On March 9, 2015 by admin


Brinda Bose


what conversations do you hold with the room you grew up in?

are they the colour texture stink of seaweed, soaked in the spirit of briny seas

olive black with the dark weariness of faraway lands

alive with the hope of survival in return

exquisitely hardy in refuge,remnants


most intimate, most distant

more difficult than fleeting friends and lovers lost and found


that old room swam you through every fall nick ephemeral passing elation

swept out blood crusted bandages when wounds healed

and smirked at your flickering jubilations


having no memory and all memory, no eyes and ears and nose and mouth and fingers but all eyes ears mouth nose fingers


your room baillemaps you each time you return

tracking bruises that broke and made you

fingering, lightly, all the laughter that birthed the crows feet at the corners of your eyes




finally, only one street defines this city

the coffin of skeletal tramlines

where collegiac ghosts



on violent flashbacks

on laughter coiled in cobwebs

on raging literature crouched in crumbled pages: precarious, predatory

on shelves holding crusted pavements and gross management tomes to ransom


there was a time when all of poetry was an epiphany, wild and endless


before recollections rolled

anger roiled and ardour spent


retreading bookstreet now where time is liquid, burning

drowning infusions sugarblack

melting argument

smoking affection, o what affection was that…


whoever knew

that such an ageless street as this

the ageing might reclaim

hunting still


for themselves, for others, for manuscripts torn, caffeine, grass, frenzy, ennui, rapture

restless verses that spiral up and down those grimy stairs

vomiting fear and tenderness






crawling this city’s face, grey termite tearing through a dusty shelf two millimeters  in a year, or less.remembrances of what we said and did not say, what we did, slept, loved, lied, cried.but so much that we said we would do but have not, burning and yearning through alleys of conversations real and imagined. calcutta, crow. about all you know and think you know, about us together and apart walking along unbidden local traintracks and riverine, those glances which have met and held. of a time before we came to be, that a city existed in which we were born and played and hungered and wept, and knew, and did not know

calcutta’s crow



fretfully watching that odd tender touch that drops from your careless hand

on my shoulder


it has been so long and not so long at all that the city has held us, screaming and silent. all our lives when our lives have just begun. is it the old man bergson who meanders along with us unbearably light, henri henri hold on tight we said. oh is he the third who walks always beside us shadowdances through our piledhighyesterdays and wipes the snot of obnoxious recollection on our sleeves as they brush


against each other and smirk. calcutta, crow

agnosco veteris vestigial flammae, i feel once more the scars of the old flame

but what is that flame how high does it sear to leer up the skirt of ageing thighs

where did it come from when did the match strike and blaze and touch a fingertip of jasmine attar to the languorous dip behind my ear which your hand reached out and licked


calcutta’s crow



hanging from the edge of the parapet looking into our eyes as we wander together and apart there and here, rapt lost hidden in the stench of stories we have shared in separate lives just like

those old framed black and white replicas of our future selves having neither history nor logic that hang askew in that studio on the second floor where clocks stand frozen that no one visits


except us. calcutta, crow




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