Love song to a poet

It did not bode well, of course.
I read the first chapter of my manuscript
And halfway down the passage
That spoke about the impossibility of a husband ever empathising with his wife,
You broke down and sobbed bitterly.
I did not know what to do.
I felt like the way one feels after unsatisfactory sex.
My beautiful manuscript
That delved so profoundly into relationships, made you sob?
My book was over.
Our relationship was just beginning.
I could not like you for days after that.
Not even after you explained all in that beautiful mail.

But I decided to kiss you.
After all, no prospective lover had sobbed for me before.
That was reason enough to start something.
Then there were the intellectual discussions.
And finally all that sex.
Those months were just magic.
Days, nights blending in sleeplessness and languorous love-making.
Old music carrying one day into another.
Neither of us cried those first few days.
I teased you. Refused to hear your story.
So you pounded the story of being an award-winning poet
Into my quivering body.
Knowing I could not protest. Knowing I would hear you out. At least then.

I thought after that, of course, we would grow old together
Share that story and laugh, perhaps when we discussed
Ammu’s first heart-break, snuggled in bed together,
Aching for the child but knowing that it would all work for her.
Because parents live in fear and hope. Fear and hope.
Besides, it did work for us.

An award-winning poet
A failed novelist
It would work out.

I thought more befitting coupling, one couldn’t find.
I thought even as I was thinking these thoughts
That they were too far, too simple, too beautiful to be true.
But I could believe them.
You were always there. You always cried.
You could not live without me. You said.
A hundred thousand times.

Today I don’t cry.
The heart ache carves its own chart.
I read. I remember.
I breathe. I remember.
In sleep, I remember too much.
Sleepless, I almost lose my mind.

Somewhere I know,
Poets forget just as easily as their poetry is forgotten.
A beautiful phrase, a metre,
An all-consuming emotion,
A moment of sublime epiphany.
And they are done. It’s all over.

Failed novelists, on the other hand,
They plod, they plead.
Their sentences meander through experiences,
Their plots, or lack thereof, obsess about meaning.
The how, what, why? O but why?
And they don’t forget. And they remember too much.
And all of it hurts.
They know they have failed.
They know they must give up now, all manners of things.

An award-winning poet
A failed novelist
No, that is unnatural coupling.

An award-winning poet
A failed novelist
It’s just not working.


About Bhumika's Boudoir

I love to laugh, and end up being a part of high drama and stormy emotion even when I don't pursue it. Being creative, and communicating with people get me going. I enjoy all the good things in life especially those that are slightly risque, and apologise little, if ever, for all that I do. Literature is a passion and so is music.
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8 Responses to Love song to a poet

  1. Smoothie says:

    Dear God, you are performing a genius now. Something about your last few posts brings a velocity of passion and loss that hits me brutally but then sweeps over gently. This language is mind lowing. Really. Really. Really. I can’t say anything more, because mind has been blasted.


  2. Despair. Flat and knowing. It does unforgivable things to you. But to write so beautifully in its midst is really note-worthy. I’m reminded of Milton’s On Blindness for some reason. Ironically, a poet. You can write and capture emotion in its best form, Bhumika. Failure doesn’t exist at this level.


    • O Anuradha. I was thinking of Milton’s On His Blindness myself. I’ve been thinking of that and A Moon… and The Yellow Wallpaper, and The Awakening a lot. So thank you. That’s exactly where I am. I wish you were here somehow, that would really help.


  3. Margin Grey says:

    This is why BFF, you are the only poet, I read after Tennessee Williams.


  4. Dhanya Gopal says:

    I still reflect on Ammu. Is it the Ammu of “The God of Small things”? If so, I’ll join the lovers of this poem. I weep for Ammu, Estha and Rahel every day.


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