why do i live here
in this key-
holed place?

the lock always unlocked,
and grooves unmatched in their
slick gestures,

welcoming in ignorance,

the key of kinship
bearing weights.

i don’t carry bread
nor its baskets,
i remain a shadow of

holding my name…

— a butter-knife —

spreading relations,
consuming every morsel
of belonging.


© Anmol Arora 2018

Image source
For With Real Toads’ Camera / Flash 55
Also linking it up with the Poetry Pantry at PU


I have been working on a new Insta handle for about 2 months now, for literary and creative posts: @anmol.ha.
For contact, you can reach out to me through my multiple profiles, enlisted here.


32 thoughts on “unlocked

  1. every morsel of belonging.. do we stay locked up in ignorance in shadow because we need to belong somewhere and not belonging would be a terrifying concept? So many thoughts, reading your poem….

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Keeping the lock unlocked shows a kind of trust in one’s surroundings, I think. I like the idea of a butter knife, as you expressed it in this poem….spreading relations rather than butter and consuming every morsel of belonging, other than bread!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Having written the bread and basket metaphor, I went with the butter-knife imagery to create a homely feel to it — it’s all about family and the underlying relations there forth.
      Thanks for your comment, Mary! 🙂


  3. magicalmysticalteacher says:

    Your opening question—Why do I live here?—could reasonably be asked by every person on the planet. What a wide array of answers there are! And to be honest, I’m not sure the poet answered his own question. Did he?

    Liked by 1 person

  4. wyndolynne says:

    Just kept reading this–the music was the perfect background to slow down, read a line, read another line and let each one flicker in the imagination. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Pat: willow88switches says:

    the abstracted made concrete and abstracted again –

    this is an interesting way/approach to the idea of belonging – or the sense of not, especially when it’s family – and I like how you’ve essentially taken one of the “big and burning” questions – and presented it, and then dropped right into the idea/image of bread, butter, knives etc. – a domestic scene of sorts, and then, we can abstract into the idea of family – and either/or nourishment, for the soul and body – as it is/isn’t.

    I like the experimental feeling in this

    Liked by 2 people

    • The relationships, that exist in and as a result of a family, are filled with conundrums — there are multiple facets (sometimes contrary) that define their nature and impact. I am re-reading Roy’s The God of Small Things and came across the bit where she points to the fact that it is family members who poke you through their words/actions exactly where it hurts the most.

      Through abstractions, I wanted to create that abstract idea/feeling of a family. I am glad that you picked on the approach of presenting a domestic scene through the most primary motifs and therefore setting this stage for a concluding commentary.

      Thank you for your thoughtful comment, Pat. 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

      • Pat: willow88switches says:

        Oh, hell, I totally understand about ‘family’ – my family owns the trademark of “fun” in dysfunctional – and I mean “toxic” – completely “toxic’ – so I can appreciate the depths to which you’ve only begun to reference the “madness in the complexity” of these ideas.


  6. sanaarizvi says:

    One word, phenomenal! ❤ Reading this poem I strongly get the feeling of one wanting more from life .. of daring to take risks no matter what the consequences. Do we as individuals really belong in the settings/circumstances in which we are put in? How far is one willing to go to change his fate? One can’t help but wonder while “consuming every morsel of belonging”… 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  7. My favorite part of your poem is the butter knife. It is symbolic in many ways. How thick or thin must spread our words, our life, our souls? I thought of warm bread which makes the spreading much easier to do. How much of ourselves must we give to belong? Sorry, to say I do not have the answer. I think there is more to ponder here than meets the eye.

    “Spread your warmth and others will feel it”

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Jim says:

    Leaving the doors unlocked used to be a normal for folks in the less populated parts of the U.S. Now we don’t always trust relatives let alone strangers. And yes, we generally have a what we call our family matriarch. Until my MIL died, she was it, the keeper of the peace.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. This took me back to Britain in wartime when our doors were unlocked as how else could kids get back inside after school with both parents working? There was nothing of value to steal in the house in any case. Eventually the key would be tied at the back of the letterbox so we haul it up with our fingers but the war was over by then.

    Liked by 1 person

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