Broken Beginnings

How long will you deny
those silhouettes
teetering on the edge?
Broken beginnings
stories barely held together with
chewing gum and stolen tape:
broken beginnings mistaking
survival for choice
existing for life
‘moving on’ for dragging
one shackled foot
in front of the other
in front of the other…

What is more corrupt than
the false idiom of success?
When the finish-line is static
no matter where you start,
no matter how you start
there is still a race, still judgement
from the bleachers, still a winner?

The abyss is endless, terrifying.
I toss a little rock and watch it
disappear, face first.
What is the velocity of a falling dream?
How long will it fall before it finds wings
and floats away into the vacuum?
Winning is not relative.
Where is that dubious podium?
Where is my victory parade?

How long will you deny it?
At the very edge, you will
find detritus: gum, tape,
wing, impossibility, a shiny
medal no one
ever won…

7 thoughts on “Broken Beginnings

  1. A poem poised, like us, on the brink of facing what we have come to. I am struck by the dragging of one shackled foot after another, mistaking survival for choice and, especially, “What is the velocity of a falling dream?” Your closing lines inject hope – that shiny impossibility humankind has spent forever looking in the wrong direction for. I love this one, Rajani. Our poems grow more dire with the times.


    1. Thanks Peter… yeah broken things are expected to compete fairly… the ire is against expectations and judgement I think, but that is the politics of a dystopic social order… that takes no responsibility but still makes the rules. Phew! 🙂


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