No Clean Slate with Blood
Let us start on a clean slate. A clean slate it will be. Will it? For whom? Victors? Losers? Departers? Anglers? Jigsaw puzzle of history’s spoils remains incomplete. Truth, and dare, and brinkmanship all consummating. A horrific orgy of breaths and breathing. Life. Death. Exhumed. Everyone is scattering us. Our emotions and beliefs, roots and futures, bones, and blood, longings and wants, family and friends. Petitions gone in hiding. Or lost. Or bon-fired. Pushing. Stampeding. Wedging. Transporting. Not knowing where we are going. Knowing only, we are grabbing for something that smells of freedom and preventing being grabbed by something that stenches of death. What will I write when the slate has been washed, blood has been mopped, tear streaks have dried, when screams and pleas have been chock-held, and drowned? Will I feel like writing then? When all I will remember is my innocent child’s life muffled. My parents left standing on a frenzied tarmac as the plane doors padlocked. I was the last allowed to board, huddled mask less next to strangers. My heart served on a privileged platter I did not bake, still pulsating like fish just out the water. Realize now why I don’t like eating meat and penance a few months every year. Why I don’t eat sea food at all. Crabs and lobsters thrown alive in boiling water. Stalks watching intently, petrified, yet proud with claw thumbs straight up in “I give a damn, karma doesn’t take too long”, as the last to be submerged. Scalded. My identity, your identity, your world, my world, were all moving in different speeds. Different directions. Different fissures. The Matrix was on replay, and dystopia-he was dragging utopia-she by her hair. Primitive societies were returning, hatched in laboratories of the gluttonous and bored in many Jurassic parks. And then, there was a union, a marriage of the senseless squabbles of mice and men. We became a speck on the messy roll of the film for the nightly news.
*The Matrix: A 1999 science fiction action film directed by Lana Wachowski and Lilly Wachowski *Jurassic: Jurassic Park is a 1993 American science fiction action film directed by Steven Spielberg
This poem is from Anita's upcoming collection, Espresso Bar.
Anita Nahal is an Indian American poet, flash fictionist, children’s writer and columnist. Anita has two books of poetry, one of flash fictions, four for children and three edited anthologies to her credit. Her third book of poetry is What’s wrong with us Kali women, by Kelsay Books, August 2021. Two of her books are prescribed in a course on multiculturalism and immigration at the University of the Utrecht, The Netherlands. Anita teaches at the University of the District of Columbia, Washington DC. Anita is the daughter of Sahitya Akademi award winning Indian novelist, Chaman Nahal and educationist, Sudarshna Nahal. Anita resides in the US with her son, daughter in law and golden doodle. More on her at: https://anitanahal.wixsite.com/anitanahal
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