Mohamed Jeeshan G. R. (b. Singapore, 1973) graduated from
Goldsmiths College in 2001 with a Masters in English. He is
currently pursuing his doctorate in English Literature at the
National University of Singapore. The Event of Being is
Jeeshan's debut poetry collection. He has also collaborated
on a literary installation art show entitled, A Whirlwind of
Possible Storms, in Jun 07. Visit http://www.idle-eye.com.
Repetitions: Part I
Repeat a tragedy it turns comic,
Long enough for tears to turn to laughter,
For night to turn day, for stones to rubble,
Repeat a pain it turns a blue numbness,
Long enough to inflict more than its red,
For water turns to blood for earth to rock.
Someone asked, 'How are these two leaves different?'
The Crazy Fool said, 'You have one in either hand, there's your difference.'
Someone asked, 'Why do you sit here all day?'
The Crazy Fool answered, 'You want me to sit somewhere else?'
Someone asked, 'Why do you sing and cry all day?'
The Crazy Fool answered, 'I sing to hear my cries and cry listening to your songs.'
Someone asked, 'What is love, crazy fool?'
The Crazy Fool answered, 'You start with a craze and end like a fool, but I'm sure you've guessed that. But it sure takes a lunatic to want to find out.'
Someone said, 'Get a job!'
The Crazy Fool said, 'The only job I know is the one that prays, haven't heard of any!'
Someone asked, 'Crazy fool how can you live this way?'
The Crazy Fool answered, 'Strange, I was about to ask you the same thing.'
There, where the quiet waters seep;
There is an ocean behind the wall.
There, under the well of a leafy shade;
There shadows drown the unwary.
There, when lightning flashes;
There your last hope clings.
There, when words mean to be clear;
There a veil is cast like a net.
There, when you trust yourself;
There you have an enemy.
Like, how it has been foretold.
Nothing would stop the banal tunes.
No, not you or me
Or a whirlwind of oven heat,
What the gutter guitarist fingers,
Tunneled in vermiform patterns,
These lines shoving us off to ash,
A melody hanging magnificent and bloodied
Like morning dust laden traffic,
How should one complain?
With a certainty of an earthworm,
We march towards the same door,
Towards less uncertainties,
Certainties we peg dangling in high altitudes.
Strums waver in its echoes,
Broken quavers, and
One would stay to listen,
Being deaf we hum,
Unable to create, we partake.
Concretized like an errant foot,
A measure of broken rhythms.
Like how it has been foretold.
Mangled bodies choke the sky,
A flash of silver, an Exit sign,
Still clinging to desperate bargains.
The choice of two always opens a third,
Heat scours dry pavements,
Always the morning after debauched,
Heated cracked walkways have no place for anyone,
Dry leaves inveigle crevices
And what was left unsaid remains,
Relentlessly pursued, you
Overrun the mailbox; asphyxiate,
The end is what you will give.
The choice of two always opens a third
And I stay to contemplate enigmas,
When do thoughts matter?
When you have knotted them in simple dilemmas,
Between song and dance,
Between commercials and news,
How do I read messages?
Your voice gentle rustles
Between sofa and numberless buttons.
The choice of two always opens a third.
Neither stay nor leave,
When the drop falls and mirrors the pool,
Can we take substance out of shadows?
I will tend to the empty mimes,
As if we are not apart,
As if we are apart;
Absence and presence as if it matters,
I am nearer to you when I'm further still.
The impossible is what we have,
The possible stays encrypted
Among the rubble of words,
Among dust tattered pages,
The endless clutter of words
Whirling into storm.
Is it possible to cleave
And shape the winds?
You will be told,
'All the more impossible,'
What we have swept clear,
The invisible perfection
Haunts us with ashes.
Never a sightless seer
More to have, as what is
To walk amongst us,
As one who listens for the cracks of dawn
That takes the threads off our burning hands,
Borne to desperate souls like seeds;
Twist, roll and shaped to the scrolls,
Where dawn spreads its fairest of statements.
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