Woman

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Who adds storyline to story,
Love to a numb-stricken protein universe,
Who sleeps with you, painting the canvases
Inside your ventricles, and can give
You an angina, any moment
She decides to rattle your world,
In disembarkment, when she morphs
Your body into a fluid, and in departure,
That godspeed-instant of goodbye,
That like a balloon popped by a needle
Bursts the bubble of all earthly bubbles.
When you’re just a non-soapy moment
In your own soap opera.

At Vienna Coffee Houses

KNife and fork

The first goats that chewed
On the red berries we call coffee beans, started jumping
And dancing, just like able bodied men do
On hotel room beds, dancing to the strange tunes
The body hums, when spiked of caffeine.
This was why the legendary Goatherd Kaldi
Dissolved roasted beans on boiling water.
And over in a Viennese coffee house
There are strangers melting the broken ice
Like climate change does, acquiescing to a moment
That neither wants to walk away from,
When each is a little closer to the other
Crafting a deft chemistry, inching towards
A second coffee, or perhaps a slice of cheesecake
Another coffee house date, more primary research,
Perhaps even a clinical study
Of how much caffeine is required
To burn 100 calories of primavera
– The advent of first spring. When two people become
In a matter of a demi-hour,
Two sights for sore eyes and two flesh that knew
The virtue of being a portmanteau
Hyphenated beyond thresholds
To transform into a bridge, which
Is just as invisible, as is visible,
When river banks are fast forgotten
To the concrete arch of love.

Colombo

Sri Lanka

Galle Face is the place to be in Sri Lanka.
It’s a walkway adjacent to the beach,
Filled with pineapple vendors, kite runners,
Ice cream vans and pedestrians, almost in a world of their own.
And just on the other side of the road,
You find plush hotel lobbies filled with self-made yuppies,
Who indulge in cupcakes and cocktails
Waiting to break the ice, to crash into a hotel room.
And in the middle, you find a four-laned road
Where Audis run alongside tuk-tuks,
Going in the same direction – dreamwards.

A city where flesh-scarce slumdogs,
Are worse off than well-fed stray dogs.
As young dog lovers with logoed T-shirts
Go around town, embarking on vaccination
Programs for the strays,
While slumdogs inject recycled needles,
Through the ventral side of their elbows joints.
Anything to forget the austere, like a shot of cocaine,
Gazing vividly at the stray dog that sleeps on the road
Next to your rundown slum, smoking
Reality down the abyss of a needle

And you think, how beautiful it is to be a dog,
That sleeps at will, eats scraps of waste food,
And needs only to chase his fluffy tail
And never a fleecy plume – that always teases you
And then disappears when you’re closing in –

That dog’s tail, man calls a pipe dream.