brahma tuhi jalimwa bhaila, piya dur nahin bulawa, hamar paache chalela na koi, hamar sahej na jai.* When I am parched, whose palms will be wet, will slice the clouds with a cutlass of gold or silver? I ask for water, storm clouds gather in my eyes. The day we met he boarded a plane to Toronto. In the Meatpacking District on the Hudson, I ask for a daily pack and he gives me a snake. I set adrift offerings in my blood of cane flowers, until I am the brown Kaieteur river cascade. Rushing his rocks, gouging a ravine below, I maelstrom the ice in my scotch with a red straw. Always across from the wrong man at the bar, I drink the burn deep, invited into his bed.
Rajiv Mohabir, a VONA and Kundiman fellow, is the author of the chapbooks na bad-eye me (Pudding House Press, 2010) and na mash me bone (Finishing Line Press, 2011). His poetry is published or forthcoming from journals such as Prairie Schooner, Drunken Boat, Great River Review, PANK, Assacarus, and Lantern Review. Nominated for a Pushcart in 2010, he received his MFA in Poetry and Translation from at Queens College, CUNY where he was Editor in Chief of Ozone Park Journal (2012–2013). He is currently pursuing a PhD in English at the University of Hawaii, Manoa.