Poetry: Jharna Choudhury

Jharna Choudhury
Thoughts are no sweet milk.


The other day 

I went walking and stuffed three pebbles in my pocket 

and it turns out they were two,

the third one was air.


Another day I do not know

how I ended up with the wrong pin number in an envelope,

rang wrong phone numbers, missed my room number,

lost my car number and I assumed I am not good with numbers 

or wrong was too wrong for me; 

but then when

somebody asked me my address 

I remembered a road and a house 

and that's it,

that’s all I have for today, close the curtains I said.


Next day, somebody said hi in a cafe,

late afternoon,

that somebody offered me coffee, 

hot cold yellow black brown milk,

I said “just coffeee”.

I did not mean an extra e. 

“Hi, your name?”

I said Mi-li and left.


Outside a house, by the road,

a door opened to a bell.

A lady rushed to me, saying

“Darling Ju”, and hugged me so hard

that my mind whirled back thinking

there was no pebble, but a bird,

its bones crushed in my net pocket;


and I didn't know what to do with its tongue

curled out to me like a pointy feeling,


but to emboss in words.



Jharna Choudhury is an embroidery artist and storyteller from Guwahati, Assam, India. Her creative writings have been featured in the Muse IndiaThe Little Journal of Northeast IndiaSpillwords, a collection titled Unsent Letters: From the South Asian Diaspora (2021), and forthcoming in four anthologies of poetry and memoir. 

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