the night i heard he was leaving

past 11, “i hate family weddings”,
i want to shout. irritated, i daub cotton on
stubborn mascara eyes-
“…a job in the north. L.
he will be leaving” a découpage of murmurs-

hair untoweled, i rush outside
“what’s his name again?” dad asks,
“L,” and suddenly the sky comes crashing black
“you sure, Mr. X, it’s him leaving?” the words choke-
“guy in the green ‘ouse? him? you talkin’ ’bout him?”
“why yes!”
“when?”

my mouth is so dry i can
almost taste blood and
his reply stings the super moon.

and her amber is lost.

i hold my head in my hands.
to stem the spinning.
retch. suck in parcels of no-oxygen.
the streets fall bare.
i can’t cry.

past midnight
past morning
i sway in a rhythm, sleep hanged,
spent on pills, afraid-
if i let go of my knees,
if i even move the tiniest fraction of an inch

i might physically break.

©Mohana Das

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4 thoughts on “the night i heard he was leaving

  1. What an intense description of this feeling of loss. Just went out last night with a friend whose husband has suddenly had to move abroad with his work and she can’t follow, and her children have all just left the nest as well. I think she felt something very similar to what you have captured in this poem.

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