On Nightmares – by Aakriti Kuntal

by TBLM

Night breaks apart like pomegranate seeds in my
palm.
The juice is everywhere, but who can see things when
they spill?

There’s only the smell and the incense of the heart
vomiting into the night. The night has been cut short,
the dream severed.

The dream like an octopus chewing the naked sense
of being.
What strangeness that myth and reality come like
twins?

As long as the juice burns the hand, its exotic smell
slips
blood thawing on the wrist; it doesn’t matter. I skip
medicine–

the aftertaste sings in my body like a Bloody Mary. In
the dream,
I am both dead and alive. I wake having swallowed my
own death.

In the dream, I am man, woman, animal and light, all
with a jarring sense of night. The night a mad rider
with red hair.

In this dream, the mind eats the body and spits it to
make the day.
In this dream, I am the vivid strain of fear. I am bright
red and dimming

black. In the dream, I can be anything but this.
This ugliness, these damp sheets. This blindness,
how myth and reality come intertwined. Hard to say
which is which.

***