“Epistemology of Touch” By Jai Hamid Bashir




This life: a sleep
that only holds one dream. Our atoms 

someday dashed and divided into
bloom. Through this secret: death 

is lonely, so it is endless. Ask of me 
how you didn’t know how long 

I had been fasting. 
Could we ever resurface 

in an event horizon before 
oblivion?  Leafy light 

cradling the last birdcall.
Shifting night to morning to hold

your shoulders. Was there ever an Atlas
on the table where I put bills? Only birds

when we got to the mountaintop to receive
the message. Eventide pulled in all smoke 

from the city. In synapses of words themselves 
returning from a black hole, the latest dream. 

It was so cold we slept like The Lovers 
wrapped in a whiter shade of pale our faces 

barely touching. Remember 
tides do not rip at the seam. Turning 

on and on. To face the faces you have let 
down. So rolling stones join bluedark buzz of moss.



About the Author: Jai Hamid Bashir is a Pakistani-American and second-generation artist. She is an MFA candidate at Columbia University where she was awarded the Linda Corrente Poetry Fellowship. Her work has appeared in Palette Poetry, The Margins | Asian American Writer’s Workshop, Sierra Magazine, Poets.org, and others.


Image Credit: Joos Van Cleve detail from Portrait of Joris Jacobs Vezelaer (1518) Public Domain

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