Three Poems by Natasha Kochicheril Moni

When we arrived we didn’t say, I have arrived—

it was late on some accounts or none, depending.

Every light in the cottage engaged, I turned off

switch after switch, but so many remained.

And you did what you do to draw

fire from dormancy.

Your fingers on my wrist

—I decided on this—

the alarm detecting

more than implied heat—

a bra cast over

a fold out—

I sing to myself in the threshold of rain.

We wake to birds of unknown name.

Because you bring me trouble cloaked in sorrow, bathed in fear

I ask you

to leave.

You are playing Franco playing Ginsberg, leaving no one

to play you.

That I led you to my river, my church—forgive me.

I wanted to drown

in something rapid.

Not you—your voice.

The inability to stay

Silent.

If you are coherent, then I am a misplaced apricot.

Too long

I have been chasing my mind like a penguin lodged in a tree

during the rain.

There is simply no time for me

to save you.

My woods run deep as I erase the everything

that will not take place.

When God returns screaming

you might be slouched

over the kitchenette

that was always too low—

your thumb overtop

the Cirque de Soleil

in Sunday’s paper.

Maybe the wind

through the window

that never seals

will inform you: purple

underwear is not enough—

there are no leis

where you head only

thin bands

of elastic to remind

you of the girl

in high-school Spanish

who snapped her bracelet

to the tune

of La Cucaracha.

Maybe now you will

discover what

you always suspected—

the witches butter

that stained

the cedar orange

became the cedar

the elementary

teacher who insisted

caterpillars beget

blindness, returned

as moth that never

calibrates with bulb

or moon or you

might find yourself

without question,

facing the window.

Natasha Kochicheril Moni, a first-generation American born to native Dutch and Indian parents, writes and resides in the Pacific Northwest. In 2014, Natasha's first full-length poetry collection, The Cardiologist's Daughter, was published by Two Sylvias Press. Her poetry, fiction, essays, and reviews have appeared in over fifty-five journals including: Entropy, The Rumpus, Magma, Verse, DIAGRAM, Hobart, and Indiana Review.


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