Jul-Aug 2011: Poem 'Neverland' by Tanmana sadhu

New term!
Exercise books in glazed brown paper jackets.
Lessons in new stories... sunny discoveries
My Very Eager Mother Just
Showed Us Nine Planets!
Can’t wait to grate
Sweet-scented crayons on the even whiteness
Of a new art book...
"Girls in white dresses, with blue satin sashes..."
Fervent voices pierce the rainy afternoon gloom
The piano throbs softly in the music room....


Squishy earthworm!
Laboriously squirms through wet garden mud
Crushed petals, fuchsia pink, dramatic against
Fragile, grubby fingers with half-moon nailbeds.
Little feet,
Afraid to tread on elves
Secretive in damp leaves.
Flight through the long covert corridor
Cheeks burning with the chase
The thrilling rush into
Forbidden terrain...
An unkempt citadel
Broken bricks, clustered ivy.
Riddle of the hidden treasure
Breathless seizure!
Land and sea, of make-believe.

Surly sum!
Code of the clocks
Fatso  five,  on  nimble  nine.
In mottled daylight,
Release at the topmost tower!
Windswept flight
Through castle skylight
A turret of magic-ridden books.
Furtive whispers, secret nooks
Clamorous tales of valour!
Remus and Romulus, Joan of Arc,
And enlightenment... Prince  Siddharth!

Mystery, strung on tiny ribbons
Of curious soap gardens.
And stuffed sock rag dolls...
George? Lucy? Darrell Rivers?
Spunky adventuresses.
Escapades on starlit nights
Lifeboats, tunnels...
Wily climaxes!

Alas!  Doldrums!
Of years swept up
In zeroes and ones....
Glitzy nail colour, plush heels, smoke.
Fair the new Foul, Foul the old Fair!
Arduous affairs...
Careworn trances, Anon,
Second chances -
Are none.

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