1. The Courts and Corridors
In the region behind the closed door
"I don't even know what I have anymore," you told me.
Behind the door that was closed
You explored courts and corridors
Courtyards and corners
You looked at everything and there was a lot for you to see and a lot you saw
You were surprised by images you'd seen before
In a different context
The same context
Images that told a story of a continuing context
And not a pleasant one or one that you'd like to believe told a story
of the courts and corridors you explored behind the closed door.
2. In the Bare Dark and Dawning Precincts
You fell to the wind
Rising out of a dark night
Unlit by stars
Barely lit by the street lights you passed
You made your way slow slow slow
Through the pavemented precincts
Along walls that dogs barked behind
At one another. Not at you.
You found a dawning sky admired by a few men and women on foot or on bicycles
Some of them held the railing for support
Some of them twisted their torsos for exercise
Some of them regarded the statue on the bridge
Some of them watched the fishermen of earliest morning troubling the waters barely soundless
The corridor you chose was not long
The corridor you chose held newfound signals
The corridor you chose had repeated signals, patterns of signals, ways to attach to light
Ways to perceive dark and light
The corridor you chose near the Murugam Kovil held good words and sent them into the smoky atmosphere on musical notes. Words like "yes" and "good" and "health" and "nourishment." These words you understood in the pinkening light of morning next to the sea when you understood little else. Precious little else.
The corridor was dust and stone or asphalt and steel.
You came to plastic and iron floating free like the fish in the net.
You wriggled in the corridor and you told me you found new pleasures of relaxation and abandon.
You sought new doors in the short corridor you chose and they opened for you a crack. Inside was smoke that stung your eyes and limited your vision.
3. Hiding the Volume of Your Complaints
A mango tree dripped its fruit and coconuts were plucked all year. You hid the volume of complaints that could have been yours,
should have been spoken
begged to ooze out through your disciplined grip
a grip that weakened with sweat and drugs and failed timing.
Fortunes ceased where you stopped walking and the village barber shut up his rented shop.
Dogs quietened when one was squashed by the road in the incessant rains. A crow worried its drying gut entrails the next day when the sun came back.
As for the bells and chants and recorded music and the prayers and orations and ticket takers' lobbing you with receipts for 74 rupees, 408 rupees, or just taking the eight rupees you proffered, these were hand to mouth
tongue in cheek
not the scary stuff you saw when you uncollapsed the image and understood the blood.