Sweta Srivastava Vikram, 7/11


I never met the black sheep
in my family who swum with waves
of indiscretion. He was out cold,

asleep in a cedar box decades
before I was born or he could smell
the next of his kin. But stories

of his youth that never saw
a rainbow echoed in the mouth
and tonsils of everyone older –

an only child, spoilt by unavailable time,
he drowned his body in an ocean
of cravings day after day –

arms full of crevices, nose stuffed
with powder of white poison,
lungs stifled with smoke, his mother’s womb shed

tears the color of blood without oxygen.
Did the sheep know about the wool
it was about to lose? No one can say

since graves and their keepers don’t talk,
but sometimes happiness is slapped,
or it closes doors, and it’s nobody’s fault.

Promote. Poetry.
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