Poem by Alizeh Khan


Savouring food has been the only distraction

But unlike O’Hara, I don’t write about each avocado extraction

It’s plain consumption, digestion

Paying up each fraction


Each bite I take, ridding me of starvation

But the dislocated desire was misdiagnosed as hunger

The only thing needed was the surreal cure of words

And that this poetic manifestation be heard


So much for a post-pandemic derealization,

These unread books that sit untouched in fear that dread returns,

This inescapable paranoia, for manuscripts, don’t burn


If it weren’t such a solitary experience

I would’ve escaped these confines despite the transience

Wishing I knew more about Greek mythology

Because no one seems to care about entomology


Shifting between Arthropods and primate skulls or

Resisting from showing my poems to whom I wrote them for

I can’t stand this any longer as these lonely contemplations

Only create a distracted living with silent imaginations


Though it allows a poetic license for some insanity

Sinking in pillows; groping hallucinations

till I discover Anaïs Nin’s profanity


I’m attempting to make sense of this stoical phase,

This unsolvable, existential maze

The creative process I struggle with

Inarticulate tangents amidst


Irretrievable cerebral offshoots that consist

False arguments, residues of adversity that persist

As I try to make up your side of the conversation

If I collected every dialogue, every schism

It would make stories and epics like kaleidoscopic prisms


Confined to scaffoldings and brick walls

When I want to slip through wormholes and fall

Into parallel realities, past certainty

Schrödinger’s realms; unearthly entities


Like a neural network, I drift between thoughts

Synapsing and scattering like a Supernova caught

On the brink of a luminous, cosmic decay

Instead, I’m holding on to promising delusions

Hopelessly sitting here, sharing a Coke with seclusion

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