In the church of my navel

by Satya Dash

lies a pearl of ambergris       when I suffer nightmares it rises like an edifice       to meet the fearful breath of my naked chest       the studded dome of mouth’s sky reflects to me      the genesis of all this       how coffins of sugar       gave away to reams of skin now quarries are mined       to unearth moshpits of pearl       a luminous pop pop pop       those gems that light       like pheromones harping a wreath       finally I considered beauty      for what it was      not for what my eyes saw       did God shun experimentation       tired of fiasco       focus on results       a perfect crème brûlée of monsters and men       vascular puddings in blood and bone       this human story       a perfume on perennial fire       once I saw in a Bollywood movie wads of notes bouncing down a cliff’s face      the hero bouncing too       I recollect the yearning from then      the indulgence in falling       the rouse of ebb every breathing space has four walls       tell me : is that enough      to call it a room       what objects which years       you must choose       to make an inhabitable smear       I have already seen a trailer       of tomorrow’s nerveless dream       our hands and feet licking each other’s at solid angles      like bodied scissors       even geometry’s begging       for well mannered love      this spectacle of shapes      not yet fit to be seen       by our waking eyes — Satya Dash’s poems have been published or are forthcoming in Passages North, Cosmonauts Avenue, The Florida Review, Ucity Review, Glass Poetry, Prelude amongst others. Apart from having a degree in electronics from BITS Pilani-Goa, he has been a cricket commentator too. His work has been twice nominated for the Orison Anthology. He spent his early years in Odisha, India and now lives in Bangalore. He tweets @satya043. Artwork by: Hannah Strong Hannah Strong is an aspiring artist. From Traverse City, Michigan, she works with various techniques and mediums such as mixed media, digital art, watercolor, photography, illustration, and printmaking. She has been published in the Northwestern Michigan College Magazine, and had her pieces featured in Dennos Museum Center in Traverse City. Links Website: Instagram: @strongh_art