At 40

At 40

Originally published on

In these fingers outstretched 
like fields ploughed   
            plugged        into variable tones
of mehendi green bangles, blades of grass overlap
into a   d.i s cor dant      harmony 
That's the color they wed to 
in the old village 
by the banks

In these finger scales 
         that grow like scallops 
I inherit a thousand destinies 
that never became
The robbed joy of formation 
of curvature cut into flatness, beaten by a rolling pin
into a dimming delay 
A monotony with five hundred faces

At the age of 40
the women in my neighborhood
develop a strange sickness
Their eyes, kale and algae dotted wells, swirling echoes
Strawberries like cleaved hearts 
ever so loosely
on unearthed lips, reminiscent of a certain wholeness

At the age of 40
the women in my country
tend to drop like sticks, all at once, 
Their bodies talking of a suffocation 
from too many
walls and too many dreams
None their own

And I wonder why no one talks about it
Why no one 
s ee s
And then I think of the nature of sickness
how when it occurs in prevalence 
We stop noticing the gaps
that have long been staring

Published by Aakriti Kuntal

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