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Poem: A Birthday Song Re-membered

My dusky body, the mortal flame of a light./I lie between the goblets of my old days,/Between the twilight glory of birth…
poem on woman
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The burden of four decades…
I sit, hunched, at the crumpled bed,
Lights off, the city of a body, raw,
Still melting, hiccupping the kisses
And sparkles, the milk of a mother’s fondness. 
An announcement of age leaping
Body and soul of a girl growing, 
A young woman fumbling,
A grown-up woman, alone, like a tunnel, 
Wishes and cakes invading, eager and firm.
The whiff of a tempest or two, beating above
The nameless silence of a new year
And its insolent promises.

My dusky body, the mortal flame of a light. 
I lie between the goblets of my old days,
Between the twilight glory of birth,
the solitary bell of death. 
Love deepens, darkens
As a coal-drift, each wound, a murky engraving, 
Each day a new song. 

The day is full of summer love, 
Sprinkled with embellishments. 
Behind them, I hid like a spider,
Soundless, trembling, barefoot,
Leaning, picking up my distant, drowning days.

Lopamudra Banerjee is an author, poet, translator, editor with six books and four anthologies in fiction and poetry. She lives in Dallas, Texas where she also teaches Creative Writing at Richland College and Texas Christian University. She has been a recipient of the Journey Awards (First Place category winner) for her memoir ‘Thwarted Escape: An Immigrant’s Wayward Journey’, the International Reuel Prize for Poetry (2017) and International Reuel Prize for her English translation of Nobel Laureate Tagore’s selected works of fiction (2016). She has recently published ‘Bakul Katha: Tale of the Emancipated Woman’, her English translation of Ashapurna Devi’s ‘Bakul Katha’.

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