From the archives – Details by Ayesha Chatterjee

Details

I have lost you in the clutter
of such ordinary things: bones
picked clean, piled neatly
in the November sun,
pennies recounted like thoughts
on the kitchen counter,
the flutter of electric bulbs
across continents.

I can recall the exact
colour of your eyes, the taste
of your breath, the lope of your stride
and feel my heart
beat whole and strong and separate
as though you never were.

from Autumn Sky Poetry Number 2, September 2006— by Ayesha Chatterjee

photo by Christine Klocek-Lim

From the archives – Rose Absolute by Ayesha Chatterjee

2pinkrose

Rose Absolute

It’s winter and the roses are in bloom.
My mother folds the sheets into perfect
warmth, the afternoon a haze of grit.
They will say, one day, she used to do this then,
or this, or that. But not yet.
Her gesture lingers on a pillow;
lavender, perhaps, or lily-of-the-valley.
Something stronger: vetiver, clove.

It’s winter and the ice flakes off the dark
flesh of the lake leaving it rippled and old.
Hard to imagine sweat in the white knife
of the seagull’s wings, in the white
roofs of the boats, in the white
necks of the swans.

Once I woke and found my parents
in my bed with me
and strangers in theirs, as though I’d
woken from one dream into another,
as if everything I’d feared were real.

There were no seasons then. No roses,
no ice, just crisply folded lines
and a child’s contempt.

from Autumn Sky Poetry DAILY, April 10, 2015 — by Ayesha Chatterjee

photo by Christine Klocek-Lim

Rose Absolute by Ayesha Chatterjee

Rose Absolute

It’s winter and the roses are in bloom.
My mother folds the sheets into perfect
warmth, the afternoon a haze of grit.
They will say, one day, she used to do this then,
or this, or that. But not yet.
Her gesture lingers on a pillow;
lavender, perhaps, or lily-of-the-valley.
Something stronger: vetiver, clove.

It’s winter and the ice flakes off the dark
flesh of the lake leaving it rippled and old.
Hard to imagine sweat in the white knife
of the seagull’s wings, in the white
roofs of the boats, in the white
necks of the swans.

Once I woke and found my parents
in my bed with me
and strangers in theirs, as though I’d
woken from one dream into another,
as if everything I’d feared were real.

There were no seasons then. No roses,
no ice, just crisply folded lines
and a child’s contempt.

by Ayesha Chatterjee

Twitter: @profoundpapaya

Editor’s Note: The imagery in this poem perfectly conveys the narrative and meaning: growing up to realize that what you once knew, innocently, has changed. Loss has multiple layers in this poem.