creep into the hollows
of my landscape—my eyes click lock:
no more the drawing of the gates.
set up your home your office
the writing desk and the trading post.
ignore the sand-brown
of my skin—a willing blind
i’ll never know black from white.
take me and talk of your finer finish
stunned i yield, so script your stories here.
adjust the pace and pulse
of marching armies—and house
your machine guns, its manuals.
populate me with anthems
the songs of wrath and those of war.
draft words that echo
of gunfire, to accompany
my lone dance of submission.
though prose mad and power crazy, you
conquer me, never with malice or manhood.
fill up all my blank skin
to resound with the strike of scimitars,
the sadness of success.
have all your battles lost, or won,
chronicled across my line of down.
(first published in Kavya Bharati)