Let me walk on eggshells. Do not mop the vomit of my many selves.
Call me bitch, a useless whore, while my children quiver in bed. If not for the warmth of their midnight legs flung over my body, I’d rather you leave me for dead.

A Place On Earth

This place I call home is paradise city, muse of impressionists, and darling of honeymooners. I know now the irrelevance of Heaven.

For as much as I long for my every breath to cease, I yearn not to return to this heaven.

A mirror of lake is disturbed by the swan that lets out a fart in A minor. Tchaikovsky giggles in his grave. 

Histamines battle to capture my breath. If only wars were so easy.



Of Upma and Matzah



The words had spilled out too quickly. Like roasted semolina dumped into a boiling pot, they had morphed into a sticky, glutinous mess. Ok fine, let us divorce.

Sandhya didn’t really mean to say those words. Not out loud anyway. Or did she? It was the asphyxiation of decision, not very different from staring at the noise on a restaurant menu. Ok fine, I’ll have the pink lemonade.

The momentary relief as the noose loosened was followed by a familiar nausea of regret and dread.

Can we not go back?
Can we not
Go back
To snuggling
Under separate blankets
Where our bodies cannot remember
Who we used to be?

Can we not
Go back
To gazing
Into our cellphones
Where our eyes cannot converse
Louder than our yelling?

Can we not
Go back
To bickering
Over salt
And pretend
That tempering
Is the only thing


title credit

My Pot Of Gold


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Mama, I remember
Your favorite part
Of the day.


It’s when the sky changes
Purple, Orange, Pink —
All sorts of colors.

Abuse is not always
Black and Blue
To be sure
It turns
Burgundy to Rust
And Yellowish-Greens
And sometimes it’s just
A heavy Gray
But mostly
It is
Like ghosts.

Mama, you remember
Your favorite day
As a child?

No. What is


Really. Why?

Because you did not
Shout. My favorite
Days are when
(( shouts ))
At me.

How do you believe
The sun will rise
Tomorrow my child
You are almost
{ S e v e n }
Like rainbows.

Surface Tension


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I notice it while applying a fresh coat of self-pity seated in the corner by the bathtub. The viscosity filling my eyes lends a Monetesque quality to the tiles, but the formation is unmistakable. Yes. A puddle of pee collecting beneath the toilet bowl in a spherical configuration reminiscent of physics lessons on surface tension. It is amazing what prolonged inhalation of commercial cleaning supplies can do to eliminate tension.

“How do you wipe the evolutionary remnants of savage that are embedded so deeply within these creatures?”, I wonder, as I prop said specimens in front of a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles playlist. No, I am not staging irony by attempting to correct violent behavior while subjecting them to violent media. That laugh is for another day. But I may have just mentioned violence.

Are pee trickles on toilet seats, dirty socks under coffee tables and half-eaten plates drying on tables artifacts of violence? Or subjective interior design choices? It is violence if I choose to play victim, but how far is the stick up my arse before I make that choice? Have not they who know it all, from The Beatles whispering Let It Be to Elsa yelling Let It Go, been hinting at the obvious all along?

Except, it is not that obvious. I mean “it” is not that obvious. What is “it” that I need to let go of? Stick up butt-hole, pride, parenting opportunities, Facebook time or the skin around my fingers? Listening closely to the lyrics of the songs, besides the chorus, might provide more insight. All of our wisdom must be hidden in song, for I have nothing left to say.



Clap Your Hands


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It’s been not ten minutes since my shower and seven and a half steps into the morning and my antiperspirant is already losing its battle. A mustache of sweat feeds sunscreen to my lips and shades topple from my asymmetrical nose-bridge. I’ve forgotten a hat to cover up the frizz.

My calves resist all attempts to accelerate and make way for grandmas on bicycles pedaling a summer’s breeze. I’m the itsy bitsy spider minus half the limbs to climb up the concrete hills. A missing thigh gap forces a burning friction against my jeans; could’ve worn shorts if I’d shaved all the fuzz.

I’m twelve minutes late to preschool drop-off. My face looks more fruit than human. My spot at the cafe is decorated with crumbs. My cafe doesn’t believe in air-conditioning. Everything is just as it always is, except me.

It’s not as simple as I don’t give a fuck — it’s that I didn’t really think about giving a fuck, you know? No? Ok, let’s try this again.

You see, there’s a peach galette before me, in a buttery glaze browned to perfection, ready to marry a steamy cappuccino. But I won’t choke with sadness and delight as it disappears down my throat. My left arm is throbbing like an old guitar, but I’m not checking to see if it completes a cardiac circuit. A cacophony of ceramics crash in the kitchen but I’m not thinking of jumping out of the building. I’m not thinking of dying. I’m not thinking of meaning. I’m not thinking.

What if this absence of thought, this annulment of emotions I’ve often labeled apathy, is actually happiness? Happiness has got to be more than a fleeting experience, unlike ecstasy or joy. It must be a steady state, like holding one’s head up the proverbial water, despite the whirlpool and great whites. Sure, you take in a few gulps or can’t feel from neck to toe, but mostly, you’re floating. Happiness must be a weighted average of mostly-s.

That conclusion itself might have driven me to declare happiness as a concept depressing. But my current “ness” is not privy to such dramatic expression. Happiness is anti-climatic and often, like anything wrapped in expectations, disappointing. As I walk away from the edge, I won’t be so outrageous as to claim I’m coming back to life, but (dear Floyd) I do see a distant ship smoke on the horizon.





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The cafe was screaming with toddlers in superhero t-shirts, mothers dragging feet behind rabid cappuccinos, octogenarians tap-dancing to the newspaper rack and you. You. My eyes found you and the crowds vanished. The whirring of coffee machines and oscillating tongues melted into a distant symphony.

You had spread yourself under an amber glow while my cessation of breathing turned me an unflattering aubergine. If love at first sight does not exist, then existence is meaningless. It is but a film of sugar dust that stands between you and I.

I remind myself that I am a mother to two young boys and a wife; a wife on her knees blurting promises dipped in chocolate that night he walked in on us. Yet, you. You evoke such hunger within me that I can’t stop thinking how sweet it would be to lay my lips on you.

Counting battles is futile when the war is not mine to win. I emptied the change in my pockets and snuck us into a corner, away from the many eyes and tongues of judgement. I devoured you whole, every pore of your being, and succumbed to your decadence. Even as I sit on my guilt, with a film of sugar dust betraying my lips, I know you will not be my last.

Tipsy Toes


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Reason #37 to hit the bottle before dinner: Skipping an afternoon siesta to scrub toilets.

While the debate on drinking and driving is moot, I haven’t heard definitive opinions on walking drunk, so I decided to gather empirical evidence today.

Specimen: Thirty-something female human injected with approximately 17 ounces of Chilean red wine in luteal phase.

Control: None


Condition 1: Walking to grocery store

  • Matching clothes is irrelevant.
  • Tummy-tucking is overrated.
  • Chirping of birds is distinguishable by species.
  • Birds are loud.
  • Trees walk into people.
  • Breathing is overrated.
  • Human bladders are inadequate.

Condition 2: At the grocery store

  • Frozen garlic bread looks tasty.
  • Frozen garlic bread is sexy.
  • Existence is pointless without 4 loaves of frozen garlic bread.
  • Public restrooms are proof by example of heaven.
  • Alcohol diminishes germ sensitivity.
  • Hovering is tricky.
  • Checkout clerks in uniform look sexy.
  • Toilet paper rolls with floral prints look sexy.

Condition 3: The walk back home

  • Skydiving is safer than street crossing.
  • 12 pack brews are heavy. Very heavy.
  • Toilet paper rolls with floral prints are heavy. Very heavy.
  • Anything touching the bladder is heavy.
  • A hydrangea bush is useless without a penis.

Conclusion: A single experiment of drunk walking is insufficient to produce statistically significant results. Further testing is required to investigate a hypothesis surrounding its cholesterol-lowering effects in conjunction with consumption of frozen garlic bread and altered perceptions of sexiness.


A Salt


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They lapped the bowls clean of yellow rivers weaving estuaries in rice. Sandhya stretched across the counter like a dog at a steakhouse, saliva multiplying in anticipation. Throw me bone, damn it.

“Humph! Daal is too salty today”. Salt. It is always the salt. Always. Attempting to balance it is more dangerous than walking a tightrope across a valley of crocodiles blindfolded. Too little and the food is less palatable than a granola of toothpicks. Too much and you are conspiring to murder.

Salting is not for the weak. It can disintegrate blood-sucking leeches and toss colonizing tea-sippers out of a nation. Bollywood’s hairy-chested swear by the anguish it can unleash upon raw wounds. It can render will-power useless when sprinkled on bars of caramel and chocolate.

Salt of the earth, of our blood, of our tears…fling it backwards for good luck, but hand it over and you’re fucked.

Sandhya drags her feet back to the kitchen, sore from chains tugging at her neck. No matter how hard she reaches, the T-bone will always been a sniff too far away while the juices from her face sizzle on the coal below. A trumpet of belches reverberates from the dining hall. The exhaust roars to life as Sandhya chases her own tail.