Dissolve into doorways – Saheli Khastagir


Red ripe grapes burst in my mouth
into memories
of a house, a poem, and some songs.
This life is a search for the beginning that was ripped out of us.
Search it and root it where it will stay.
|Our assurance against mortality.|

So I dig my teeth into his skin.
He digs his teeth in my time.
He holds it in his mouth.
He owns it.

One little girl buried under gold,
waits for a groom on a horseback,
and a whip.

Her happiness is a small corner under the stairs,
where pain is too important to enter.
But darling, I want to burst into fireworks.
I want to light up into flames.
I’ll take the whip,
but refuse your corner sir, your shade.
Let’s climb on elephants
and never reach the center of this issue. Okay?
We’ll evade duckbills and crocodile lips
and always skirt overflowing lakes like this.

We share and pull comfort out of each other,
evoking life!
My breath gasps out with every tug
of your leash.
I want to soak in your smell.
I want to fly inside the security of your arms.
I want to grow lives like soil
and be held by infant arms in urgencies.

I want!

Perfect February subtleties won’t do.
Can you take my unfolding?

How you measure, compare, scale us and ours.
Is this enough for you, love?
I am unfurling flames and deserts.
Won’t you share this too?

Each unwinding brings me to the beginning.
I swallow down memories into happiness
and hush this devastation.
Everything will settle into starting points.
Was mine greater than yours?

I was born inside carefully built meek walls of want.
I will fill each cell in me with the hope that conceived me
And let the earth soak it
to grow more lives that will end into beginnings.

I open like doorways of tomorrow.
Timelessly we are watched.
Timelessly we relive circles.

Someone must be enjoying this.



Saheli is an artist, occasional poet and a development consultant. You can find her art on her website or her fb page. She is currently developing an illustrated directory of mental health terms, called MH Illustrated, and also creating 26 portraits of Writerly Women for 26 letters of the alphabet. She resides in New Delhi, India.