Fall 1986 • Vol. VIII No. 4 PoetryOctober 1, 1986 |


Yes, Runu,it's you and I who are naked.The winds rise kiteless,and meat measures the speed of hooves,as we let our sympathiesedge past the corners of our nakedness. Here the dead always rise,out of their eyesappear the mist and the anguished pine.So one among us begins a story:yet how could one hear a voicefrom the desolate stage? Under the black stoneis another tomorrow:a strange god who darkensthe pink hooves as you watch;the design of the deadyou cultivate like a rose in a pot. A way of telling each otherwe know:a curse of the rainbow,my hands, lying openone on top of the other,cold as fish on the slab of your lap.

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Author of sixteen collections of poetry, Jayanta Mahapatra’s latest volume is titled Bare Face. He has read his poetry around the world and is widely anthologized. He edits the literary periodical Chandrabhaga. His recent work has appeared in the Sewanee Review.

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