PER DIEM

by prasanna   May 4, 2022


time stains my hands like turmeric—i fastidiously try and wash my hands
of it, like ridding it would absolve me of me my sins. but it only
ever fades into a pale yellow across my palms, not unlike the
palmful of sunlight i try to cup an hour before sunset.
time constantly slips through my fingers,
there’s too much of it, there’s never enough of it,
it’s a chasm a kilometer long—
they say if you manage to squeeze through
and get to the bottom of it, you’ll find time stops.
they say the same is true of wounds too.
maybe time was always meant to be intangible—something to elude
our understanding in order to propel us forward.
but lately, i've been thinking of it as another strain of grief,
another name for grief—they share commonalities
in the way they impose themselves on me.
and as much hard as you press down on the wound—
the clock still ticks.
tick—tock.
tick—tock.
tick—

4


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