with the anemone zero.
Drink 12 oz. of coffee in Longmont.
Are you parched?
Is your name Pinky?
What color is the skin of your inner arm, creamy?
Valentine City rebate: a box of chocolates from Safeway.
Yours, yours, yours.
In its entirety.
Don't collude with your inability to give or receive love.
Collude, instead, with the lining of the universe.
Descent, rotation, silk water, brief periods of intense sunlight
striated with rose pink glitter.
The glitter can only get us.
Here we are at the part with the asphalt, airstream Tupperware,
veins, some nice light stretching.
This is a poem for a beloved.
Who never arrived.
Copyright © 2019 by Bhanu Kapil. Originally published in Poem-a-Day on June 17, 2019, by the Academy of American Poets.
About this Poem
“I wrote fragments of this poem into my blog The Vortex of Formidable Sparkles on a freezing cold day after I'd taught nine and half hours straight. It came out of the strange, deep loneliness I sometimes feel in the U.S., and the desire to start living a life in which I no longer colluded with modes of despair and regret. I came to this country to write something I could not write in another place. Perhaps it's time to begin. Also, the last line is a rewriting or re-imagining of a Mira Bai bhajan, a lament that my mother sang to me often when I was a young child.”
Bhanu Kapil, born in England in 1968 to Indian parents, is the author of Ban en Banlieue (Nightboat Books, 2015) and humanimal [a project for future children] (Kelsey Street Press, 2009).
Date Published: 2019-06-17
Source URL: https://poets.org/poem/collude