Lineage – Tuhin Bhowal

I lament the melon seeds
he is flinging midair:

            Our procrustean past chafing 
            its future silence—

Here, this is the present.
Roots in fish gut, hemic livers & lungs.

            What remains of god is god
            itself; torched orchards, fruit

gardens, peaches in panic from Shillong
& an ancestry of four infidel brothers.

            Give a prisoner an open
            window, its baroque blue.

Don’t forget their martyred
sister. In a room of absences, 

            we are both absent—we are what is
            missing. We parade in bodies we are both

shameful of. India is no
country without its felt history.

            Our fathers spill stories
            of their schizophrenic dust,

which I mistake for confetti. In another city,
when mobs leak into mouths—then, there, we

            may find each other, perhaps.
            Looking under my boot-soles, I scrape dirt

stopping somewhere for no one.

Tuhin Bhowal’s poems and translations appear in adda (UK), Bacopa Literary Review, and elsewhere. He currently serves as a Poetry Editor at Bengaluru Review, Sonic Boom Journal, and Yavanika Press. Tuhin tweets @secondhandsins.

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