Poetry at Sangam



IN-BETWEEN by Janice Pariat

They cannot mean the same,
these words, to you or me.

It is a trickery of knaves
and kings, a hand of aces.

A slippery-slide of unending
falling, clawing at smoothness.

These words you take and shape
within your own heart, filled

with secret images, a lonesome
mine-field you return from,

scarred. The torment is yours
alone; who am I to understand

what is love to your ear –
the crevice it fits into, the blank

piece of serrated puzzle.
These words to you and me

are different worlds inhabited
by strange suns. The shadows

long, unrecognisable – illuminated
by varying light.

Impossible to meet, really,
in-between is space for a pane

of glass, a slip of a snowflake.
It is enough to be a universe

of separates. Apart.