- Comment Policy
- Contact Us
We gave 125 pavans of gold to weigh you down—a kilo
of yellow that gleamed like a tiger’s eye
or like that decayed tooth that stood ready
to be plucked from your grandmother’s mouth.
Grandmother didn’t survive, nor your mother,
her third degree burns. Gas stoves may explode
when dowry payments are delayed. But you have
an MBA from CU-SAT and in this wedding sari
flaming red with forests and palaces woven in
with golden thread—you look just like your mother.
In fact, with 20 bangles on each arm and those jumbled
necklaces slithering down your neck
to nestle in that 8-hand-fold tuck
of your sari—you look even better.
Go make us proud drowned in gold.
The House Gecko
You lurked on the whitewashed ceiling
of my childhood with its single tube light.
Pretty moths flew towards you, thirsty
for light—their delicate shapes covered
with raw intricate patterns, drawn
in powder colors—mine were smeared
by the touch of a man’s calloused hand.
The moths fluttered in the florescence
till you crawled, ceiling alligator!
In seconds, each wing was bitten off.
They ran in silence—writhing bodies burning
in the naked light, with you in merciless
pursuit—pale rubber belly slithering,
filled with translucent shapes of wings.
Ashwini Bhasi lives in Ann Arbor, Michigan and analyzes DNA sequences for disease-causing mutations during the workday and cannot stop writing poetry at night and on weekends. Her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Driftwood Press, Eunoia Review, and Cyclamens and Swords. She writes poems to make sense of the mind-body connection of her chronic pain, her life as an immigrant and the duality of her experiences as a scientific data analyst and poet.