H. Masud Taj




Forest eyes you in the dark,

Measures every move you dare,

Stalks your trail of uncertain steps,


Vanishes when lightning falls,

Reappears the instant after.


The thousand eyes of the beast

Converge at the nape of your neck,

Catches the glint of the moon’s last light,


Just as you, slowly, turn your head,

You never did sweat in the rain before,


That beats out the rhythm of a terrible heart,

That quivers with each breath you take,

Each time the vein in your neck pulsates,


Each time you hesitate.



Body Scenarios


What if the skull separates at fissures,

Embryonic rewind on a Richter scale,

Seismic plates slide and stutter

Break the sphere’s hold, zigzag and splinter.


What if the brain-hemispheres cross over,

Left and Right redefine themselves,

Synapses warp their interspace,

Neuron-impulses gather at the gate.


What if the eyeballs involute,

Stare at the Blind-spot for the first time,

On the optic causeway sucking to the centre

Till sight short-circuits its source itself.


What if the inner ears realigns,

Semicircular canals synchronize and fuse:

Torus twisted as a tourniquet

Till you can’t tell which way you move.


What if the lungs loose their breath,

Loose their dimensions and wither,

Shrink into wrinkled leaves,

Into  photosynthetic whispers.


What if heart-valves abandon their passes

While tight-fisted muscles’ pumping continues,

Blood sloshes in drunken courses,

Pulse in the wrist waits for the news.


What if capillaries keep on branching,

Cross section converging as they subdivide

Denying corpuscles their passages,

Engulfing organs in a fecund drive.


What if bones disobey,

Squeeze the marrow, dispel all space,

Balls and sockets disagree,

Elbows and knees swing the other way.


What if the skin turns inside out,

Displays its glistening underneath :

Glands, hair-roots, nerve endings raw,

Hair sprouts within as sea-weeds.


What if your seed cracks the code,

Shuffles the genes with a manic glee,

Deconstructs the helix scaffold,

Mutant crouching in a blind alley.


Edge Of The World


This is the edge of the world

Where clouds converge and keep on gathering,

Trees turn their backs and face the wrong direction,

The sound of the sea is an unchanging roar,

Patterns in the sand perspectives into a whisper,

The sky is a mist,

The horizon the edge of the mirage.


Here the face of the clock is blank,

Magnets forgets their axis,

This is where fingerprints flatten out,

Parallel lines meet, space folds back

Unsettling the seat of gravity.

Solids swirl into shadows,

Press into planes,

Compress into lines,

Define the edge of the world.


Look back at the world losing its definition:

The sky searching its co-ordinates,

Stars as black as burnt out holes,

Your last footprint







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h Masud Taj


H. Masud Taj

Sentinel Poetry (Online) #51   ISSN 1479-425X


Editor-in-Chief: Amatoritsero Ede

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