Arundhathi Subramaniam


Here’s what I’m good at

When you’re around,
marinating in you

When you’re not,

Nostalgia is reflex, a spasm
of cortical muscle

But this remembering isn’t habit
    or even sentiment

This remembering
is a slumbering

allowing main text to drift
into marginalia
weekday into holiday

inhaling you
as rumour
as legend

and suddenly as thing —

        empirical —

with your very own
   local scent

of infinity

Let me follow river currents
warm with sun
the ambling storylines 

of green lotus stems
and wooden boats

Let me be that tangle of moonbeam 
and plankton

on a journey too pointless
to be pilgrimage —

floating jamming
                just jetsamming

Remembering isn’t an art
more an instinct

a knowing that there is

nothing limited
about body

nothing piecemeal
about detail

nothing at all

Arundhathi Subramaniam

Arundhathi Subramaniam is the author of ten books of poetry and prose, most recently When God is a Traveller, shortlisted for the TS Eliot Prize. As editor, her recent book is Eating God: A Book of Bhakti Poetry. Widely translated and anthologized, she is the recipient of the inaugural Khushwant Singh Poetry Prize, the International Piero Bigongiari Prize, among others.