You look in the mirror at the wayward
Strands and the whitish face with scabs,
Just woken up to another day.
You remember asking God to postpone
Your hair fall when you were 21, after all the apple
Doesn’t fall far from the tree.
My father is as bald as a naked mole rat.
And you remember reciting
A novena that your mother gave
To find your true love, your soul mate.
It’s amazing how confident you become
After a little prayer. You’re the master
Of pick-up lines at a bar, your fluoride
Smile makes you as stubborn as enamel,
You don’t overthink nor undermine
Yourself. You firmly believe that every
Woman you encounter is ‘the one’
A little number that elevates you from
A zero existence, of ordering green curry
From a Thai restaurant and eating alone
Like you’ve done the whole of your 20s.
I’ve never prayed for some help at exams.
I guess that never mattered to me.
It was just a little fling with questions
When I just rose to the occasion
And filled little slots with binomial nomenclatures
And morphological features of
Biology’s inventories. And still
There are those day when you encounter
Mirages that fall left, right and center
Of little empirical results which are unreproducible
At the second try.
And now I don’t pray
I just tell myself this is part of god’s plan
For me. How I climb out of my safety zone
And live, will be my defining factor.
I will always be Dr Seuss’s archetype nerd.
Still, when I open the wardrobe to look at my shoebox.
I don’t plunge down to a world
Of strange creatures, my Narnia.
It is only a nostalgic finger molestation of
Heart-strung mementos of my once La La land.
And that shoebox is where you find
The praying mantis, reminiscing the time
I was as green as a little insect that holds the palms together.
I remember a woman who used to haunt
Me like Casper swimming inside my arteries.
She was all I wanted for a while. A teacher
Who made French as easy as taking
The wrapper off a chewy toffee.
And French was my cup of tea
For a long decade. A dream as obvious
As the moon in a pitch black sky.
Prayer is just a foray into a world
Of bucket lists, we call dreams. Where you find
Little indicator strips for a litmus test called love
And praying, polishes dreams and
Sharpens the blade, to an acuteness
That cuts through anything.
And palms when they unite from tip to wrist
They metamorphose a hope-blunted chamber
With a spark of St Elmo’s fire.
And the prayer conjecture will never be proven.
We can only pack ammunition
To a hypothesis, for the kill.
And all it takes is a silence of a church
And the whisper of a Hail Mary
To find the key that fits to a lock,
To open a secret doorway.
The details only you and God know.