Tuesday, October 2, 2012

The familiar and the unfamiliar

There is always a vicarious pleasure in being in the familiar. It might hide, melt away, steal in passages in old books, or torn magazines, it might get lost in poems of years forgotten but the rupture in the familiar never allows it to disappear completely. Its somewhere there in the smells of a towel, in the memories of old worn out clothes, in stains on coffee mugs, in a face which we never saw, on a tree where we refused to etch its muse. It is always at hand, waiting to lay its grips, like a scorpion, like a death which repeats itself after every beginning, after every closure, after every opening. It just takes you in its arms when you had thought you left it far behind, when you thought that for once you won the game of hide and seek. Yet the torment of hiding, the torment of never being able to be found, the blackness of getting lost, the tower of silence weighs heavily on you, it starts from the eyes, then you hear its voice closing down, speaking of a forked tongue chiding you for getting lost in the wilderness away from the home you built, it settles on the skin, slowly carving its way to the nerves through the very sinews you had hardened in the unfamiliar...it settles as a foreign taste on the tongue, but slowly as the saliva gathers around it, it starts caressing itself and suddenly you feel the hunger in the bowels, the same bowels which had refused it...it cracks open the skull, teasing you for reasons for denying it all this while, it chides you, scoffs at you, uses expletives unknown for not letting it in...it has been waiting for you to come out of the door, the moment your feet discards the soil on the door mat it sticks to your shoes and stealthily enters into the bed, it discards its clothes in the shower and from the foam of the soap it rubs your body clean of the unfamiliar....it touches all those parts where the unfamiliar had settled, fights its memory, accepts its own lost friends in the unfamiliar, signs a truce with some and then finally enters into your nightmare. words after words you deny them, long running the struggle against memory, but now the familiar settles with the unfamiliar, both biding their time, to come to you, slowly entering your words, your verses, your poems, which no stranger can see....

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