JAGARI MUKHERJEE

JAGARI MUKHERJEE

Jagari Mukherjee is a freelance content writer who currently resides in the City of Joy, Kolkata. She has an MA in English Literature from University of Pune. She was awarded a gold medal and several prizes by the university for excelling in her discipline. Her writings, both in English and in Bengali, have appeared or are due to appear in different literary outlets, including The Statesman, The Criterion: An International Journal in English, Indus Woman Writing, Anandbazaar Patrika, Bangladesh Barta, Narrow Road Literary Magazine, Fragrance of Asia, and many more. Her first book, a collection of poems entitled Blue Rose, was published in May 2017. Jagari obtained the first position in the ‘Temirqazyq’ contest (organized by World Nations Writers’ Union to celebrate the 26th anniversary of Kazakhstan’s independence) in the short story category, and was awarded the One Star Diploma of ‘The Best Writer in The World’. She also won the first prize in the annual short story contest organized by Get Bengal, which was published in an anthology entitled Different Strokes.

 

MY POOR POET
 
My poor poet –
I will buy a sunflower-yellow sofa
For your 200-square feet room;
We will put it in a corner
Next to a cupboard full of
Books…
 
You can write your poems
With your teeth
On my arm…I will drink the cherry-brown rum
That you left unfinished
On your table…
Then I will breathe into your chest
And rub my button-small nose
Against your skin…
 
My poor poet –
I will cut out a little window
In the cracked wall
Of your 200-sqaure feet nook;
And we will watch
The stars together
From the sunflower sofa
For years till our
Notebooks turn yellow…
 
 
 
POSTCARD FROM A CLOTHING STORE
 
Ten years ago I got a postcard
From a clothing store in Berlin –
It was an advertisement for the launch
Of their new line that season,
Featuring a pastel-toned photograph
Of a man and a woman who seem to be in love…
 
I saved the postcard for ten years and then
Gave it to you when the very thought of you
Made me visit clothing stores…
 
But now I lounge alone in bed
Wearing your old grey shirt
And not bothering to fix my messy hair…
All because one grey winter day
You gave me back the postcard, your promises revoked…
And I tossed it in a shoebox and went alone to bed…
 
 
 
SEROTONIN
 
In the old days,
I would have written you
A letter on cream-colored paper
Telling you of the lover’s rose in the heart;
But today I know
That my brain is addled with dancing chemicals like
Serotonin and Dopamine
That fill me with illusions
And lead me to deceptive happiness at your kind words…
I already know from before
That “passion will fade over time”
And also, that “attraction will not last” –
This “feel good” is only “temporary mood”.
 
Still I will meet you
In the rain-soaked street, ignoring the sunless world…
I will be wearing my flattering black jeans and a floral top
Under my transparent plastic raincoat
And complain about everything
Including my squishy pink sneakers,
While my thoughts secretly float with
The tide of the sea of the feel-good chemicals
That make me want to touch your butterfly eyelids
And the wet strands of hair sticking to your forehead.
 
 
 
SHOES
 
All night long I lay
And occasionally dreamt
Not of you…
 
I was awake
Longer than I was asleep
And tried to sleep
Thinking of…
Fantasy pairs of beautiful shoes;
Sometimes of my parents and siblings
But not of you…
 
It was strange –
Believe me, I tried
To keep you on my mind…
But it did not work –
I felt numb.
It was strange
To feel
So numb
So betrayed
By my own mind;
To think of shoes more
Than of you…
 
(You, for whom I was
A pair of shoes that you
Left at the door…)
 
 
 
PARTY
 
I will sew many mismatched buttons
On my patched shirt,
And wear it with
A long skirt whose
Colors are getting drunk
At the Party of Life.
 
The wine looks like amethyst
And smells of pineapples
As I dance with my lovers, then release
Their bodies and sit and continue
To drink, and write
About the Party in a journal
With blue pineapples on the cover…
The Book of Omar Khayyam by my side.
 
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