i talk to the walls of my bedroom, tinnitus
simmering behind me. catharsis looks over
my shoulder, hovering impatiently. my hair is
untamable in this heat. and my mouth is full of
breadcrumbs. some days divide in coin flips.
and some days drown and bleed, pavement wilting
under the sun. later, my cousin wails at the garden
and larks warble back. the school trembles loudly
as we walk to class, skin melting slowly, puddling
at our feet. students flit about shyly, watch their
pulse stuttering beneath your tongue. after. the
junkyard is filled with broken kilns & bullheads.
we wash the filth off in the river, panting quietly.
the hush seeps into our bones but i still flinch at the
sound of leaves breaking, it reminds me of mother
in january, alzheimer’s telling her to forget us all.
science teacher describes combustion and
we think of mother wandering naked, skin flaking
off, hat dangling from one hand. art teacher asks why
the fabric i use is so chintzy, pattern spread on his lap.
i ask why he kissed a fifth grader so greedily,
his hands disappearing down her shirt.
Rachana Hegde is a sixteen-year-old poet from India who collects words and other oddities. Her work is a study in chaos and blurred memories, and she is dissonant in the company of strangers. Her poetry is forthcoming in Alexandria Quarterly and Moonsick Magazine. You can find her reading, drowsy-eyed, or at http://ink-smudgedfingers.tumblr.com.