For the Earth that’s Losing Itself

Write about shrinking spaces
Write about the colour green
Write a line of chopped trees
Write a symphony of broken rings
Write yourself an optimist. 

Write about grandma’s earth. 
Wells in whose waters you could meet your eyes
Feather-touch hand pumps that sprung fountains
The jugalbandi of rains and tumescent ponds
Write about making love. Write yourself nostalgic.

Write about now – the unstitched bellies of lakes
White, once the last skin of water disappears 
Summer crisscrossing powdery topsoil
Imitating the open lips of death
on an old mother’s face. Write yourself vetoed. 

Write about Madhav who marries thrice
Each bride, a water bride, fetching more water
Write about women who welcome co wives
who put lumbago before self esteem
Write about the dictates of water. Write yourself polygamous.

Write about Kalidasa’s Meghdoot
Whether we’ll ever know a messenger like it again
– dark, dense, moist. Generous. Giving. Godlike.
Write about lynching reservoirs dry
Write yourself parched. Write yourself anhydrous.

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