Shloka Shankar

A Small Death

I need to know 
all there is to know;

lock it away, keep it safe.
As if a small death,
           dreams stagnate—

both sides of the coin 
trampled upon—

a permanent scar like fire.

Source: A cut-up/remixed poem composed from random pages as found in Flowers in the Attic by V. C. Andrews. 

from the beginning

a stimulus to gather 
the unsolved, ancient dark,

a rapidity and completeness 
[intangible but real] made plain;

the silent longing of flowers
and the mysteries of the heavens

translate the deeper currents of feeling
into human experience—

become a part of the startling world
in its dense ignorance,

dimly conscious of life 
as the study of hieroglyphics

Source: A remix/cut-up composed using select lines and phrases as found in Chapter One of How to Keep Bees: A Handbook for the Use of Beginners by Anna Botsford Comstock. 


           “As soon as you trust yourself, 
           you will know how to live.”
           – Johan Wolfgang von Goethe

Intuition is the reddest apple
            on a half-broken branch. 

How do you define 
           something as worth doing? 

They say what counts is the seed—
           but, then again, words die in cages,    

drifting in an ocean of instability.
           I don’t know how to calibrate

or if I even should. 
           The fractured gaze of the horizon

holds us, whetting our appetites
           for an unnameable blue. 

Do you remember the day
           we uprooted each other from the seabed?  

A happenstance recital 
           of everything that is wrong with the world. 

Shloka Shankar is a poet, editor, and visual artist from Bangalore, India. A Best of the Net nominee and award-winning haiku poet, her poems and artwork have most recently appeared in The Purposeful Mayonnaise, Heron Tree, Prune Juice, and hushlit among others. Shloka is the Founding Editor of the literary & arts journal Sonic Boom and its imprint Yavanika Press. Website: