Balloon Seller

Barely five

Spunk, fifteen

and the wit, fifty

The balloons he carries

bobbing on the ends of sticks

like his head

on the pike carved by poverty

he manages to keep it upright

but they push him down

seldom bullied

but ignored

not worth the effort

lowest of the low

a mere fruit fly

in a world of leeches

craving better blood.

 

His father showed him

everything he shouldn’t be

but he became anyway

the cycle destined to repeat

forever set on a loop

the rich get richer

the rest get wearier.

 

And once more he chants

“bhaiyya, le lo na ek”

“behen, oh behen, de do na kuch”

and once more he sees

how they unsee him

and one last time

he disappears

into the river

his balloons bobbing

in the water

but his head

nowhere to be seen.

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Breaking the silence

It’s on the tips of our tongues

The words our egos will never let us tell

I look at him; no it will never be the same again

You broke everything I’d try to regain

We’ll move on, you faster than I maybe

For you’ve broken more than mine

And through my rose colored glasses

You’re festooned in my head

I can forget you in a second

But that second will take a year

We both know the story

They say it wasn’t meant to be

They say a lot of things

I’m not made for flings

Will you cut through the ocean

Will I cross the skies once more

To break the silence

Will it be you or will it be me

In this force of gravity

This mutual attraction

Maybe we’ll find salvation.

No I don’t remember us falling in love

But I’m sure that it happened

Gabriel Royal