Chandramohan Sathyanathan – A Posthumous Letter

I am a primate
dwelling in the wild forests
of my language.

My tongue lost irretrievably
in the swamp of hunger,
I hide amidst the barren rocks.

Your own selfie
sheds light on the swastikas
dangling like a locket
when you hide in the interstices of your alphabet.

My name had been a museum piece
dying a slow death like my dialect
before and after you live-streamed me.

My language is an extinct variety of paddy.
It doesn’t grow in the clay used to sculpt my body.
I am a martyr of my language!

Poem chosen by Emilia Mirazchiyska, editor of the series.

from Love after Babel and Other Poems (Darija Press, 2020)