[tabs tab1=”Poem” tab2=”Poet Bio”]
[tab id=1]I like talking to myself about love
when family and friends are around
braaing in th’ day,
and sending ignorance my way.
Send back Cupid’s kisses astray:
friends of distant family
or colleagues rambling,
all I know is they here to stay.
I’d be the first to greet
yet I’d be the cheat.
There’s smiles all around this place,
in a space, I’d wish there’s no race.
Weights thrown from their hands;
hit my heart to beat –
this morning light also eats my space,
for I’d leave behind no trace.
I know of my childhood rages,
the pranks to camouflage the sages.
And Mummy and Daddy’s night-after-fight
could never put those childhood stages
on clear white pages
Stages from the most parts of my intellect,
that ravaged the most temperamental acts,
complicated and dead like phages.
Her childhood youth has past me,
in seasons that turn Autumn to Spring,
for love at Dawson’s Creek or at my place,
surrenders itself (without guilt) at His Grace,
and like myself, men, trail behind
for loving a beloved’s love so wilted,
(through deprivation in one’s youth),
stunts the trunk’s growth sublimed.
I’d do nothing for love,
with no heart rhymes.
I’d pick her picture and glaze away,
wishing now that she’d stay close to me,
for my foot hurts while riding horses
on the farm and eating apple-crisp-pies,
amidst my mind’s clouds about French kisses,
might heal this scar with some gloat.
This exiled heart now sees backs turned away
that face strangers who hold hands; are
ignorant on thoughts, aspects of the heart;
(matters to my needs)
Gains that took me places
fleeting above the ground;
making me starve and left to read.
With financial gain I learned
about hands never heard:
Liked by students or pupils;
it’s reason I left the pills
(meticulously head circles the moon),
beyond the thoughts of me she thinks
beyond the emotions of her I sink,
thinking she’d be back, soon.
I’m cold in love’s centre,
when heard and told about love,
from someone never seen, next door
where people met mourners,
within the stoned heart, where tombstones
couldn’t be shared or cloned.
Crying, fighting, pulling my hair,
I’m running after love!
Heart-strings stiffened while pulling,
the pain no brave heart can wallow
deep in love’s shadow,
my heart sinks to depths of rivers or falls –
unable to mend, unable to heal.
Crying, fighting, pulling my hair or screaming,
I know I’m squealing in dealings, I’ll never seal.
Screaming at him or her, parents and friends,
my heart burst in flames then.
And in my small room the letters left
were kept away through theft.
Fetched or thrown, I don’t know how or when?
Crying, fighting, screaming and kicking,
I’m lost in a shrine of my own –
surrounded by others’ love, I’m forced to bow.
Seasons pass no longer for me, love.
I must love talking about love
with those who think marriage is a must.
I shield them; (we all want different things at dusk)
protecting the scab of my heart.
I’d do anything for love:
cry, fight, scream,
but I won’t do anything right now,
until the ointment doesn’t kickstart a valve.[/tab]
[tab id=2]Rishan Singh is a prize-winning South African poet, a biologist and writer. His writing has appeared in numerous journals and books, and he has also written fiction and short stories. He is the recepient of a poetry prize of the Indian Government.[/tab]