In another world, I walk along a pier in a city that isn’t mine. The darkness reminds me of some kind of worship, and the water - liquid and fumbling. The first time I’d experienced winter was in an abandoned park, and the light closing itself into a coffin. How strange, this memory of stars. Little winks from a distance you can’t scale. And my eyes: only an instrument, empty, lacking, lagging. The ocean - far-off. The sky - a lifetime away. The raspy whispers, noise, pearls, and the town that set itself on fire. I’m so limited to my bone. The cold, embracing, like something that doesn’t love you back. We’d known this before, felt this before, waiting for words from a mouth that is turned towards another cup. The silence was never a virtue. My mouth, sewed with a fabric of glass.
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.