February 04, 2020
There is no escape
The boardwalk ends
I am left
a cold God
full of indifference
but not towards
the waves return
they make the shore
shine like ice.
Anton Pooles watches far too many movies and believes in ghosts.
February 14, 2020
As soon as I saw you, I knew we had known each other for ten thousand years. I quickly scrubbed down Greek letters, Arabic numerals, and Latin presuppositions, and calculated that we had lived 167 lives together, some of them minutes long, others a lifetime. As I spend time with you more and more flash into my mind in no order – I have begun writing them down in hopes it will tell me more about the 168th life I am in now, to make this the longest and sweetest of them all.
4. Sitting on a park bench with a blue tulip in my hand, we saw each other as you walked by holding the same flower. Your head resting near my shoulder, we compared our tulips and you asked my name while I asked yours.
28. Walking up the high-angled streets that overflowed with lavender, I saw you, the only person in a crowd shuffling down towards the coast, who stopped to smell the flowers. I approached you, sweltering in the heat, and told you that there were larger and brighter bunches two streets over. Without another word, you raised your hand towards me and said “Show me,” and we cut across the crowd.
31. In a Cypriot prison, I counted down the days until I would see you again. I feared that time had changed my body and my face and you would not recognize the person you saw go through those gates a decade ago. But when they released us, you spotted me immediately in the swelling crowd and ran towards me. Suddenly, the ten years spent apart collapsed into dust, and I felt at home in your arms.
44. Working as a telegrapher on a train, I saw you first when we pulled into the station marked “Azure Hill,” lettering a new sign for your cafe. Seeing your smile, I knew that I would not be on that train when it left, gathered my single satchel, and walked off to ask you where I could find a place to live in my new home.
69. On a groaning bus, we took turns sleeping on the other’s lap, praying the border crossing would go smoothly. With your hand in my hair, I resolved to spend as much of my life as I could with you.
71. On an airplane to a new place, we nervously checked passports, visas, and government chits to make sure we could stay there as long as possible. I hoped we could find cheap land to begin a new farm, and you promised we’d make our new home feel like the old.
136. I came to your cabin in the winter, cold and hoping for shelter after I had lost all in a fire; without a minute’s delay, you wrapped me in a blanket made with your own hands and set my body close to the fireplace. I felt your hands on me all of that night.
151. In Sonora, you saw me in the early morning getting my old trawler ready for a day of fishing. You asked me if I could bring my catch directly to you, and that the restaurant would pay me wholesale. Knowing that I would see you again that day, the early morning water never felt as warm.
Jon Babi is on his way, and is excited to see you.
February 23, 2020
last night, after a few episodes and then
I needed a snack
to power me through, then my closet
was so, so messy
(it’s not anymore). after all
that cleaning I made
another snack, well, more of a gourmet
dessert, read a few books, wrote and
out in full, scrolled thru
after all of this I opened my books
and doodled some flowers.
Manahil Bandukwala is probably drinking tea right now.