Medea’s testimony at her trial

“the children are dead”:—

they were called desire and love.
it wasn’t revenge. it was freedom.

the alchemy of golden fleece is such
that all that turns into gold (&blood),
can also become a bitter, battering
concoction of carbon and sulphate
that are coated on my bosom, that
nourished the progeny of my sacrifice.

i am not spiteful. i am enraged like eyes
of a broken china doll, like the spit in
the fire, like the fever that has banished
you to bed. i am a scarlet red, a sorceress,
a demanding muse of open seams, stitches
&sudden seizures. how can i ever handle
this juggernaut of social relations?—
media monsters, movie marauders,
these Colchian dragons and fruits of
crimes of passion, my need for rebellion.

my serpentine journey back to my start
should not be taken as my loss or suicide,
i reach back into my psyche (foxglove
memories, apple armories, dreams of Circe)
to seek what is my own — i look for a home
to live, where my solitude can be permanent,
and my shoes big enough to carry my swollen
fates. i do not believe in sun-derived faiths.

the heliocentric space cannot accommodate me.

Medea — this is the coronet of a life, non-binary,
non-conforming, non-resisting, reticent, regent,
relapsing to the rosary of nocturne herbs&remedies.

i am godly, i am ghastly, a gargantuan figure of
your vile disgrace — fuck Euripides — i do not
need your malaise, none of your magnanimity.

© Anmol Arora

For my prompt, ‘On Myths & Legends‘, at dVerse, where I have asked the poets to reimagine popular myths & legends and write a poem about the same through a new tangent or perspective. Do come and participate!
Also linking it up with The Tuesday Platform at WRT, where Sanaa is hosting this week while also posing an optional challenge for the Poetry Month.

Day 23
(Inter)National Poetry Month


poetry as an insolent departure from conformity


when you are made to believe
that a tragedy is a tragedy when
it is driven by a populism-pill
or a mass media narrative,

do you raise your right eyebrow
for all those that are left behind?

when you write, remember the spirit
&gushing blood of struggle & revolution,
of the counted measures of oppressors
and patron saints of ‘civilization’.

when you write, remember that your
words reek of the same puncture-
flesh-wound, the same blottings
of history, that are left to obscure
bookmarks or a silent/distractive
nod with a thought that we have
progressed: “we have changed”.

when you write in the colonial tongue
of the superiority of your pain&despair,
take the language, nourish it, and
grow with it, a seeded&sprouted
rebellion, against its masters
of propriety and precipitous puerility —

be insolent, question everything,
be visible, valourize nothing,

use poetry as a tool of discounting
all that they say in rhetorics,
use poetry as the shrapnel death
that maims humanity every day.

use poetry as the breath of those
burrowing through the gutters
of your urban dismay,
use poetry to wreck like the rivers,
the oceans, the hills, the earth,
anguished by your society’s disrepair.

use poetry as a refrain, as a chant,
as a protest, as an active agent for change,
use poetry as a brandishing sword
that would mark the history with
its parallels, and cut open & devein
the sanitized versions and visions
of the hegemonic normals & neutral angels,

use poetry to fuck things up,
use poetry to fuck them up.

© Anmol Arora

Image source (Study of Perspective – Eiffel Tower. 1995–2003. Top right: Ai Weiwei. Study of Perspective – Mona Lisa. 1995–2003. Bottom left: Ai Weiwei. Study of Perspective – Tiananmen Square. 1995–2003. Bottom right: Ai Weiwei. Study of Perspective – White House. 1995–2003.)

Linking it up with The Tuesday Platform at WRT, where I am hosting this week and I have given an optional challenge (in consideration of the Poetry Month) to write a poem titled, “Poetry as…” while taking inspiration from Lawrence Ferlinghetti’s Poetry as Insurgent Art

Day 16
(Inter)National Poetry Month