August 31, 2018 Poetry , POETRY / FICTION

Peg Hunter photo



Mukund Gnanadesikan







Her disarticulated life

Begs my indulgence

In broken English,

Entreats my unfamiliar hands

To aid in reassembly

Of human circular nest

The fundamental collective unit

She recalls the bonds unbreakable

Sealed by adhesive of hands interlocked

In grip strengthened by trust of generations

And shared dreams palpable in each pulsation

I see sacrifice in her pores’ anxious moisture

Her heaving breaths compel me to apologize

For nation’s swirling whirlpool of depravity

My empathy will never be enough

To understand her misery

Knowing this I seek eloquence

Imagining silken words of comfort

While fantasizing golden knightly deeds

Which break apart the dungeon walls

And reunite the son

With desert-battered mother

Thirsty for justice

Deserving of far more

Than my frozen soul’s efforts

Proper words of sweet succor

Never arrive

Nor tears

Nor money

And she remains alone

Separated from the boy

Availed of nothing

But an observer’s guilt

And empty water bottle.






Cinco De Mayo



He enters the classroom

Wrapped in El Tricolor

Nodding at his neighbor

Teacher frowns



“Take that off

You’re in America now”

Murmurs rise

Among brown faces

Wondering what comes next

But he raises a finger

To his ruby lips

Discards the garment

Standing tall

Touching his heart

Feeling unstoppable rhythm

Beating proudly

While mariachi trumpets sing






Mukund Gnanadesikan

Mukund Gnanadesikan is a poet, novelist, and child psychiatrist who lives in Napa, CA. His work has been published or is forthcoming in Adelaide Literary MagazineThe Ibis Head Review, The Cape Rock Review, and the anthology of male poets Sheets: For Men Only.

Editor review

1 Comment

  1. Lynne Zotalis September 03, at 14:26

    so very heartfelt and poignant. Thank you for your words of truth.


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