Mannequins By Jayant Kashyap


I see your hands / shaping the waves after the
slightest onset of dawn in a lime coloured city

under the sun’s / hidden scalp. The wetness
of the dew yet covering the triangularity of

the ryes in a slithering / slight slime observes
your now already hardened hands with a warm

softness; the ryes you once told me were the
plaits / of the daughters of the mythical men that

died in battles below our carved / wooden book-
shelves your cut marble silhouettes in the middle

of the nights, their daughters running to them
with pitchers / full of water feeding them some

bread the men’s backs on a reddened ground
then laying themselves down by their fathers

waiting / for the sun for hope for ages now their
plaits the rye reaching out drying themselves in

the sun of memories of a million years shouting
those out to us in silence; sometimes / you tell me

to listen to them. Sometimes your hands reach
in, meet at a horizon, grab the powdered white

entrails in ladled mouths. Next morning you do it
again until, you tell me one day, there’re enough

horizons to count; at other times there are no
horizons and I gather sometimes it’s your sadness

that hollows the marble sometimes / your happiness
makes it infinite like longing rivers like light

touching a pupil like a soft breeze made up of

like /

By Jayant Kashyap


Jayant Kashyap is a Pushcart Prize-nominee, and one of the founding editors of the e-magazine Bold + Italic. His poems have appeared in Barren, StepAway, Visual Verse, Perverse, Outcast and other magazines. His debut chapbook, Survival, was published in 2019 by Clare Songbirds, and Unaccomplished Cities is upcoming from Ghost City Press.

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