Rizwan Akhtar
  I hang to exilic words and their meanings

  in a dictionary after clouds pronounce rain

  smothering gales of late November 

  over Lahore in treaty with perennial dust

  slowly drizzling patches tickle wings

  birds forget to take extra measures

  Where are your hands? Huddled inside
or on the rusty tap leaking consonants

  language spooks the evening rattling

  windows and washings strewn wildly

  What matters is silence escaping passages
and walls habitual of banking crowds

  inside rooms what is lost in conversation 

  is also on trees hosting stripped barks

  everyone holds a word for this change
we can count on grammar not sentences

  everything carries a tinge of brown tongue 

  expressions are no strangers to wanderers.

Rizwan Akhtar works as an Assistant Professor in the Department of English, Punjab University, Lahore, Pakistan. He completed his PhD in postcolonial literature from the University of Essex, UK, in 2013. He has published poems in poetry magazines in the UK, Wales, the U.S., India, Canada, and New Zealand.

more by Rizwan Akhtar:
subterranean love