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Photo: iStockphoto
Photo: iStockphoto

Free Verse: Aruni Kashyap

A short poem by Aruni Kashyap


At a certain point, I looked at your hair,
the scar on your back where I had kissed after I
flipped you over, just to pretend
that I am a generous lover. At a certain point, when
I hadn’t yet reached climax, I thought about
the dinner I would skip to look thinner, the people
who would roll joints after seven-thirty on this bed, the bottle of
wine I would buy, the train I would board
to reach home. Loveless. At a certain point

I was glad it didn’t last longer than three hours, that I
didn’t have to act anymore that it is good, not great.
At a certain point when you were biting my right nipple,
I wasn’t sure if I should pretend to respond at all, should
bite back when I didn’t want to because I had come
already, and was waiting for you to; quid pro quo.
Loveless. When you spread your legs, did you look at the ceiling?
Did you look at the moving fan, the moss on the next house that
stood with its ugly water-pipe? At a certain point

though I knew you were just one of those hook-ups
cold like night stones, knew
what another stranger’s body can do to destress you,
make you happy-tired happy-achy, but I also knew that
if the ropes that bound your soul were my wrists,
I wouldn’t cut them; you are not the one, not the
one who I would do that for.

Aruni Kashyap is the author of ‘The House With A Thousand Stories’ and an assistant professor of English at Ashoka University, Haryana

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