Poems by Bharti Bansal
Barren home and broken bodies
I dream of a land
Where I am not a raging river
Or a dying moth
Where the light is not too faraway
And sun is at the tip of my thumb
Where my lover doesn't hold pillows for comfort but me
Where time doesn't fly
Like a bird in a burning forest
Waiting to escape
Where the dark doesn't scare me
And this lonely world doesn't convince me to find a dream
Big enough to weigh me down
Keep me grounded on earth
And doesn't let me shoot from the earth at escape velocity
All I am saying is that I am just trying to stay
As long as I can
Without making it sound like a complaint
Because you see, sometimes the best moments should be kept at one hand distance
And best memories are better off without heart
So all I am trying to do is detach myself
From this world
A rope being cut
A taut thread hanging loose
For there is no way to heal loneliness
But to believe that we afterall aren't even lonely alone
That somewhere someone feels exactly like us
Tucked in my bed
I am waving everyone off in my dream
And running to a land
Where nobody knows that I, infact, am so sad
I might break down on being asked simple questions
And know perfectly the answers I can never admit.
What do I do with all this sadness?
This space where I exist, I have no way to claim it and call it mine
So I give it your name
And leave behind something to remember
For I am easily forgettable
Nothing about me is beautiful
But you, my love, will easily bloom long after I am gone
You see we all are flowers
Some simply leaves
Crushed beneath feet.
But here I am
Stricken by autumn
Looking for someone to turn me into a poem
Romanticise my loneliness
And let me know
How things when short lived
Are better at being remembered
So here I am slowly ending myself
With the hope that my absence will be turned into something tangible
Like your hands in mine
Your text in my phone
And my final words
Descending slowly upon your ears
A life ready to give up on itself
An urgency at being saved
A helpless cry
Writing this out of sheer desperation
A dying star
A setting sun
A final goodbye.
Jatinga Bird Mystery
Every year local and migratory birds fly to Jatinga only to commit suicide.
They die as the fog descends down the mountains around the valley, like a bride
And they rush towards the giggling light, get hit by long bamboo trees and die."
You see, the first time I looked at you from a distance, I knew you were going to be the death of me.
I, like those silly birds, flew towards the halo of your being and crashed on your body
A deep chasm that echoed the last chirps of dying birds, a sad goodbye
I knew it had to be this way, your name sounded like a symphony of a toddler than a warning bell
Jatinga, a small valley in Assam
Us, a hole dug in the mid of this fabric of world
Together we made a perfect pair for anything that could kill mercilessly
Those birds, migrating thousands of miles
Across seas and oceans
Leaving their nests like little soldiers
Only to die in a war that nobody started
Are their dead rotting carcasses, casualties of not looking enough in the direction where the dark births out of the womb of the light
Or is it just another mystery that people forget soon enough, a friend who bids you goodbye, gifts you harsh words you ponder over throughout your life and think if he ever loved you at all?
If we die together, is that even death or a celebration of it?
If we know we have no time, will we slow down and look at the skies above and the land below?
Will we ever know who loved us the most?
Does ground ever complain for mass graves or does it accept its fate?
Are these birds forgetful like me, return back to the same valley/you in the hope that maybe one day you will love as you had promised to?
But who can blame you
Aren't you blamed enough already?
You have blood of innocent birds on your hand
You have unfulfilled dreams hanging like branches from your bodice, my father's pride, and my mother's laughters, all perched on your shoulders like pigeons that surrendered themselves to land years ago.
Jatinga, a paradise
You, my final resting place
Hand me the gun with no bullets inside
And watch me die still
For there is something so powerful about apocalyptic sky in your hooded eyes
When doom is about to fall
When we split like butchered sheep
When you laugh and I bow down before your feet
Take the knife and run it across my throat
For you had me flattered on the first day
When a shrink calculated my misplaced emotions as fifty percent depression
And I had smiled
There is something about finality of the last moments
Those birds know the difference
I always knew the difference
Yet we never stopped
Because regrets are mishaps of love seeking forgiveness
And we don't forgive easily, do we?
You see there is a reason why crematoriums and rivers run side by side
We all tend to wash away our last sins
Those birds become the victims
And I turn into survivor instead
We have the same tattered wings
Same blooded corpses
A final call for help
And a dying wingless fall to tell our story
The poems first appeared in Two Drops of Ink