Brown Man


I’m brown, as the useless fungi
Creeping out of a log, that

Has been there, like a boulder
In the middle of the prairie,

So are the sepia prints that are
Closest to our color, that too brown;

Filthy, dirty, squalid, brown.
The descendants of the industrious

Indian from Bihar, or the Ugandan
Man who absconded before

Idi-Amin came to power. How in this waste dump,
Wasteland, some may say, there is a man, who

Will never know the lotus position
Or how to hang from a cross,

Only, that, just like everything in life,
Even virtue should have a point of reference.

Now they look at the contrasts,
Of not brown, against black or white,

Only deed against a sanctum of the truth,
On a washing line, what facebook

Calls a virtual wall, the same
Wall that has seen the truth be catapulted

Far into space and time, even
To the poets of America, who take

Me in as a breath, and not as a breath
Of fresh air. I look at you, so beautifully equipped,

To be embracing a cosmic freedom,
That your constitution guarantees,

Preserving secrets, inside letters, wombs,
Attics, closets and back seats of cars,

While I lie, every man’s stooge,
A bunny, who sleeps at day, while shrinks

Cut off my third eye, disemboweling
My imagination, those psychedelic paintings,

Of a still untamed mind. I still write, paper
Quenched of ink, while I sip a can of Coca Cola,

And remember a woman, who
Stopped drinking Coke. How my life

Is a band on a radio, what people
Listen to, waiting for the hour,

I slip for good, like a man on stilts,
On a rainy day. I walk to a Coke can,

Grab it by the waist, like a Tango
Dancer in Buenos Aires, just to remember

A time now far gone. How it seems,
Just like Cupid and his arrow, there

Is a little ghost called Casper,
Who impales a mind, yearning to go back,

To a place and time, when a can of coke
Had 9 tea-spoons of sugar,

When my tongue could tell the difference
Between Coke and Zero Coke.

How Casper’s days were beautiful, they
Were like a thorn-less rose in a vase,

That finally wilted, when I placed an arum lily
Inside the same vase, a brown

Man, whose one attempt at redemption
Was a beautiful lass, who cleaned my dusty eye,

Emptied my nostalgic heart, and promised
Me a lifetime of joyrides.

Love to a brown man, is not about
Alters, doves, vows or ice sculptures,

Only how comfortable we are, of
Our own imperfections, so unlike those birds,

Preening their bodies on electricity wires,
Helped on by our four senses, conspiring to break open

A body at the same hour. How a cat burglar,
Is caught red-handed, breaking into a brown room,

Setting off a home alarm, a protracted one at it,
Waking up the neighbors, the least.

How we dare, to let in, moments of percussion,
Trusting in our bodies, to deliver to the last

Note of a song, thrusting our hips,
Making thrushes of our lungs.

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