Thursday, January 31, 2013

The Attic

the sepia memories
old hurts 
like cobwebs on patchy walls
a tangled web of grey,
the rigid verses 
of an unwritten elegy- 

picture of my  mother 
smiling wistfully at the camera
someone had clicked it years ago 
looking deep into her big black eyes...
a brocade scarf on the bureau
with tea stains on its green tassles
a muddy hue
of remorse-

an empty bottle of perfume
the fragile whiffs of her fragrance
still  trapped inside  the crystal walls
moth-eaten volume of Burns' poetry
the serrated petals of a yellow rose
a leaf still trembling on the brittle stem-

fluffs of cotton, dead feathers, dusty squiggles on the floor
the rickety wooden table
doodles on the scratchy surface
"love...forever...forever "
on a three legged chair
a blue cushion, embroidered  
with a sprig of musty wisteria-
like weeping willows

my father's old coat 
a golden pen 
tucked inside the breast pocket
a picture postcard from Venice
crushed by restless fingers
the smeared red ink
 like diluted blood
" dear"

a muggy afternoon in a corner
dark as sin

a sad evening
congealed on the dirty ceiling

blobs of sunset on the window sill
the parting glory 
the blinking tail lights
of a retreating car
 the goodbye-

the night 
when we had pressed our faces together 
and wept silver tears
you and I, moon.

© Nazia Mallick


Last night you wrote your sonnets in  Braille: the commas, parenthesis, ellipses engraved perfectly on my skin- and  I  ...