The memory quickly fades into origin:
days of sunlit, ashen mornings, and the golden –
bouncing off the copperware, the field of green,
chiseling away the edges, the teeth-like irregularities,
and softening June with the colour of setting suns.
Surrendering to the shape of birds at twilight,
and us – little figurines, hands a mess of bones,
Bodies tumbling towards another fate.
This was back when we couldn’t separate
the glow from the sun, the fire from the spectacle –
younger versions of the same self,
stuck in a heaven of their own making.
And the solitary image, stuck like a riddle in my head:
you, running towards and running away,
And your little hand – a fist around mine,
Tight and tangible and dreamy,
like an aftermath of some great frenzy.
And the house, still surviving, breathing with wind,
existing not as some painting or a photograph,
but a structure, a monument, that lived on
even when the sunsets, and the birds and us - all had stood up and left.
Smriti Verma grew up in Delhi, where she studies English Literature at the University of Delhi. Her interests include film, literature, and creative writing. Her poetry and fiction have appeared in Adroit Journal, B O D Y, Word Riot, Open Road Review, Coldnoon and Four Quarters Review, among others. She is the recipient of the 2015 Save The Earth Poetry Prize as well as an alumna of the Adroit Journal Mentorship Program and GKA Writing Studio. She also works with Times of India, Khoon - an NGO for Blood Donation, and Talk Happy Therapy. She is currently a part of Slam Out Loud’s Jijivisha Fellowship, and enjoys working as a Poetry Editor for Inklette and Ideate Review.