Stale Meat

It was really nice of Tuhina Ganguly to have sent me this poem she wrote for my blog. She is a dear friend – very cordial and humble. In my opinion these words of hers bespeak of a tension between acute aphasia on the one hand and easy volubility on the other- predicaments encountered invariably on so many occasions in life.  I quite enjoyed reading it. Hope to hear from you what you feel!


“You must wrest

my words from me

As if tugging

at a fisherman’s hook

lodged in the centre of my throat

Pull at it

as you would

a foetus the wrong way around

Blood gushes forth

gurgling like a tiny stream

splattering across your chest

hot and humid

but they are only words

my words against your chest

pulling out your hair

in tufts

No! Don’t scream

they are only words

running amok, piling high

crushing you under them

my words

my words

my words

my words, rotten

my words, fresh

my words, strawberry ice cream

my words, metal against fire

my words, salt, pepper, red, blue

my words, for you

my words, my life, my last breath

my death, my redemption

and the smell of stale meat

burning at my pyre, my words

those too”


22 thoughts on “Stale Meat”

  1. Hmm. Can you ask her to share a little background on the poem? Nothing too detailed if she doesn’t want to, but a high-level overview of what made her write it?

    1. Thanks so much for your interest, Puneet. I wrote this in a state of anger and restlessness, when I found that I just couldn’t articulate myself. And yet there I was surrounded by books and their beautiful assembly of words. At that moment, I both hated and loved words. And that is my usual state of mind!

      1. Got it – I’m not a big fan of poetry (mostly because I often have trouble understanding it), but the background always helps me so thanks for sharing! 🙂

    1. Ah..the ‘strange title’ Umashankar..it’s in the last line of the poem..the death of the
      embodiment of words, to free me of my words, and them of me. But it’s for you to interpret however you wish to. Really heartened to see you liked it.

  2. A very heart rendering piece! The importance of getting expressed sometimes these words are lauded,liked,they touch ..and with time these words lose their value their worth,the importance…As life moves on the importance of a being been turned into vulnerability and then into just a piece of rotten meat! metaphor rules the poem..loved its intensity.

  3. I will be honest.
    I could not understand anything in this poem and also the poem in your previous blog post titled “Falling in Love”.
    Let this not be treated as criticism but as a confession.
    The fault is mine, not yours or Tuhina’s!

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