poetry

Preoccupied

I walk out the door

for 20 min at 8:10 every evening

descending the stairs

Preoccupied

Wondering the origin of preoccupation

From the war?

Pakistan occupied Kashmir perhaps?

What’s your occupation? – I was once asked

By a stranger

I occupy every space I find – I had said

Preoccupied

Walking through broken streets

but lit up in red and green

Transparent water reflections of

Iridescent films

I, preoccupied about my vendor

Motorist almost runs over me

Startled, angry he looks at me

I stare expressionless-ly

Kill me, or don’t

Don’t you dare give me the look

Preoccupied again by a woman

Who takes my side

Walking ahead on the footpath

The motorist in the wrong –

Why didn’t I tear his eyes

Preoccupied

The river flows ruthlessly

too lost to appreciate the beauty

I wait for my eggs at the shop

but when did I even reach my destination?

Preoccupied

I gorge on them like Kabir Singh

his alcohol

That’s heartbreak they say

No heartbreak is just pouring rain

And empty heart

And empty stomach

Preoccupied mind

But who cares

The spice hits the slits opened in my tongue

Everyday the man looks at me and

Asks the same question.

I say – PalTi Nakko karu

The only sentence I can say without

Fumbling in a language -not native to mine

But preoccupied with a man looking

He brushes his hair

And I look through him

For a black cat that’s missing now

Probably gone forever

Rain intensified

The white tarpaulins hold leaves

and the light pours

I leave and traffic is haphazard

And a standstill

Preoccupied I walk across

Same conversations

Same puddles

I ascend the stairs

Afraid that I will be berated again

The doorbell is loud

The door knock is not loud enough

The insanity

Of living on charity

I enter preoccupied

He screams like he’d anyway

Over smart educated people he taunts

I throw the umbrella at his face

Inside my head

Outside I feign a bland face

Preoccupied again

With being preoccupied

And I wonder

the origin of preoccupation

From the war?

Pakistan occupied Kashmir perhaps?

What’s your occupation? – I was once asked

By a stranger

I occupy every space I find – I had said

Every space away from the present.

2 thoughts on “Preoccupied”

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