Poetry / May 2010 (Issue 11)

The Solitude of Being in One Place at a Time

by Arjun Rajendran

a water tank, the dead sea scrolls, Pluto,
when the woman under me turned
into a boat, a tree-house, the river
behind a government brothel we frequented
as bachelors; before she remembers
to ask me if I like to fuck her, the cookie
jar will need to be returned to its place,
the cat will need to be fed,
then, to renew my subscription to the universe,
I'll have to wear a coat and head
out into the cold in the dead of the night
like a whore with dry lips;
Someone is always there to ask
the time, ever so politely,
now who was it who had a lover who
died of syphilis? The islander I sold
my Rosewood table to last month
or the postman who left an arm in Vietnam?
That must have been fun. To return
from the other side of the world
to become a man of letters.

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