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Caravans in the Sky

By Aranya Gupta

The sky is a bruise on the skin of space
At night, when black and blue
It whispers in all its hopelessness:
“there’s nothing you can do”

The sky is a bruise on the skin of space:
I learnt this as I spun
At the back of my desert caravan
Whose reins were held by none

And so it swiveled around the sky
Screaming dreaming free
Until it crashed into a cloud
And rained down on the sea

It happened then, and once again
From sky to cloud to sea
I fell and fell, into a cell
Where calm could never be

By and by the laughing sky
Had bruised me black and blue
Strung it said, “why are you afraid?
There’s nothing you can do.”

So I walked until the earth
Ebbed away my shoes
Disillusioned this traveler so
Bitter black this bruise

And I saw you feather across the sky
And settle next to me
You scrutinised my tired eyes
And fed my dreaming tree

For every frog that croaks in grief
There is a bird that sings:
It was you, my love, with all your life
Who gave me back my wings

Yet like Icarus, the Fool himself,
I crashed into the light
And fell again, headfirst down
The sea of sightless sight

Up there you sat across the sky
Tied down by my grief
The sky gave way and in you fell
Into the dreaming sea.

This song, my love, I sing for you
For some things you must know:
My wings aren’t worth an ounce of dust
If your wings do not show

There was a time when all the songs
The sky had passed to me
Faded into empty ears
And eyes that wouldn’t see

But light has dawned between the black
And blue that drapes the sky
It seeps into my sleeping eyes
My bones, my will to fly

And so I will, and so will you

An anchor I shan’t be
Share with me the sky, my love
Kiss my dreaming tree

“Enough of this wandering”
I’ll sing to Black-and-Blue
‘I’ll take control of the reins for once
and there’s nothing you can do.”

 

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