makkhan malai – Swastika Jajoo

noon settles—
embroidered with trinkets of winter
dhoop, rising steam from the chai stall across,
colours of kesar from makkhan malai 
that has seen the moon all night & finally
becomes its song. that is how i am, too,
becoming the lyric of you, dear moon, dear
love, dear whose name i can barely whisper
for fear of it scattering across my every
sky. so i keep you like a safeguarded secret,
the loneliness of the man who brews & brews
& brews the makkhan for hours on end
with no company but the moon.
he is met by a morning slightly sweeter
but no less lonely. what do i know of love?
nothing other than it is what it is & makkhan
malai? nothing, too, other than it is what it is.
o khuda, thank you for at least letting the best
of things stay safe from the desperation
of description. if there is no meaning to pining,
let pining be meaning itself.
Swastika Jajoo

Swastika is studying Linguistics in Japan — or at least that is what she’s doing when not conversing with crows, teaching, trying to poem™ or worrying about if she’s added too much ginger to her chai. Her work has been featured with The Seventh Wave, Eunoia Review, MudRoom Mag and The Lickety Split among others.

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