Sanjeev Sethi


There was a phase, longish period when I read,
I scrived but didn’t put in print. Tick-tock of
my pendulum was on a cerebrational mode.
Like a bodhi of sorts I built a blindstory,
quieter than all the calm there is. College
friend, a bureaucrat called. My apodictic
response was to share not show-off. While
cutting off, his har-de-har translated as loser.


In this scaffold there are slivers of sunshine.
We lose to lapsus, others to stasis in our inmost
station: the rest are cairns. The lay is short-lived.
Chunks unwrap without the correct lilt or lyric.
Sometimes the chant hits a clinker or is too low
or loud. There is frisson of the festive season.
Constellation of downtime tournaments too.


“You pettifog like Portia.”
I yell in this homely two-hander.
Without sensing the motive
text or subtext, my maid smiles.

Sometimes when Fate reveals
what I cannot read
I give myself her kind of smile.

Sanjeev Sethi has published three books of poetry. This Summer and That Summer (Bloomsbury, 2015) is his latest. His poems are in venues around the world: Off the Coast, Hamilton Stone Review, Literary Orphans, Easy Street, Mad Swirl, The Blue Mountain Review, The Provo Canyon Review, Dime Show Review, Squawk Back, Red Wolf Journal, The Aerogram, Chronogram, The Ofi Press Magazine, Lunaris Review, Expound Magazine, and elsewhere. He lives in Mumbai, India.
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