This poem was published in The Chakkar in February, 2024.
I draped the pashmina shawl today
that once wove patterns in wool
entwined with our half-embroidered longings –
now long drowned and buried
under memories of the click-clack of my knitting needles,
steaming kahwa, and crackling logs
on a cosy wintry night in Kashmir.
The shikaras peddled our dreams
amidst the floating hyacinths and lotus leaves.
Hope glistened on the peaks afar
while the russet dunes of chinar leaves
formed a gentle duvet for our fiery yen.
And while it snowed outside all night long,
I listened to the silence of your heart
humming a hundred amorous tunes.
Then the snow melted, and your passion thawed,
The glades burst into a tapestry of bloom
mocking the thorns pricking my heart.
I made a bouquet of fresh green sprigs,
pinned with a crystal tear drop
and beads of frozen scarlet droplets.
Walking through the pines and deodars,
I placed it on the ashen grave
that cradled the corpse of my callow youth.
PC: Sidharth Singh on Unsplash