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“Snippets of You”

by Hafsa Mumtaz

(Author’s Note: This poem is inspired by the painting Midnight (1979) by Pakistan’s most famous female artist, Zubeida Agha. )

“Snippets of You”

an excrescence of azure to inkblot blue
icicles of teal to cyan to turquoise
to parhelic white lustre festoons
like a mesmerising hallucination in
the chandelier shards is the delicacy
of your ideation in the medium dissolve
the photon of the luminaria of your soul
is blue melancholy or is it a reflection nebula
or the hue of the aura of your heart
electric like an eel meandering like a dagger
do you behold the glitter of your essence
in the shades on a canvas or do you excavate
it in the abyss of your poetic eyes or do you
sculpt it out of debris of your hopes and then
paint it with your blood or do
you smile unconsciously at something
youve seen for the first time but you feel
like its been yours all along or do you see colors
in paintings that are not really there or do
you see your life painted abstractly on a
canvas by a unknown artist or like me do you
search for the traces of your Self in the
dust draped tombstones rust embraced pens
worm devoured books in your storeroom
termite infested bookracks blunt lines of a
sketch you drew broken charcoal pencils
a note a random girl gave you years ago
telling you that only you can be what you are
before an ordinary debate competition you
were stressing so hard about
and now you come across it when youre
emptying your old school bag to dump it
the old patent leather sandal that you wore
to a college party now sits bruised
and disfigured flat on top like a car smashed
by a pelt of an avalanche

Hafsa Mumtaz, aged 22, is an emerging Muslim poet from Pakistan, with a bachelor in English Language and Literature. Her poetry has been published in magazines across Pakistan, the U.S., the U.K., South Africa, and Hungary. She loves to write about nostalgia, spirituality, mental conflicts, and nature.


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