I owe you 100 rupees for that emergency contraceptive you bought me.
And another five to include the VAT.
A necessary precaution for an imagined possibility.
The thought of a baby that just wouldn’t go.
So you showed me blue-eyed dogs in a dhaba that afternoon
And told me that’s the sort of children I would have
If I went ahead with my plan
And made babies with a blue-eyed man.
What a jealous bear, you are, I said.
Because stealth was never your thing.
And I was glad I could kiss your mouth
Stained as it was with the red curry of lunch.
Jealous bear, I repeated, and smiled.
But maybe I shouldn’t have.
It set me thinking
About what a hairy man
That last lover was.
Though lover is hardly mot juste
If all a man did was lie in bed
And wait to be serviced
And then complain that he had lipstick
On his pale pink lips
And whatever would his mother think!
Only that you’ve been had, love, I joked.
But he didn’t find it funny.
It should have told me something
That morning, should have.
That I rode him all the time wishing,
Hoping you and I would get to do it again.
And wondering again if you’d trade me for wealth
And become another millionaire among the many in Moscow.
This is your problem, you said.
You read too much.
No good has ever come from a girl who reads.
Less from one who shags me.
We can’t remedy the latter.
But must you be masochistic
And add reading to your list of vices?
That night we had the best sex ever.
You said you counted how many times I came.
I only knew I cried.
And I couldn’t tell myself why.
I drag myself to the present
Stare longingly at the blue pills
They are back in the tar black market of medicine.
As with everything else, you just need to know a guy.
I can get you boxes of this if you like, said the chemist.
Just pay me a 100 is all.
And, of course, 5 rupees VAT.
I indulge with two packets.
No pain for the next five days.
This period will be painless.
This period will pass in haze.
So I don’t have to think.
So I can believe I no longer live.
10 blue capsules in each.
That child we would never have.
That’s what this is I thought.
And then I heard you saying,
This is really your problem, you said.
That you read between the lines.
This is really your problem, you repeated.
Now everyone reading will think you are a junkie
and a slut.
Rohini Manyam Seshasayee, my BWWer, assigned this poetry challenge when I was bemoaning lack of inspiration. Brief was to write a poem. These five words were given: Moscow, Bear, Tar, Masochistic, Contraceptive.