After you left
for the land where no one dances
in the rain, I discovered worlds
too big for my palms.
I hid our moments of salt and stone
in thickets of blue bamboo. Still
they scamper onto skin, tumble
through arms, settle in hair.
Their scent lingers, brick dust
on rock. Some mildew.
I harvest the rest.
Somewhere, a language has no word
for remember. Yesterday is always
happening, never more
than today, or last year.
Do you ever retie the pulsera, smile
at the Zapatista postcard? Fondle
initials scratched on coffee cup?
Do you still sing the story of shoelace?
I have sock drawers stuffed full
of memories I am afraid of
forgetting at the doctor’s
or the supermarket.
Did I mention rust
is my favourite colour?
I kept your t-shirt.
If you wanted to come back, would you
find your way? The birds ate the crumbs.
This poem was first published in the March 2012 issue of Muse India