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By Ben Mazur & Raquel Balboni for Boston Compass (#131)

January 18, 2021


How the cloudscape changes, yellowing

infinitely. Clumped as suds on my disjunct lashes,

the scene deepens with thoughts of rain.

The wind is a clot of doom among trees,

quivering like a possessed finger. Love’s

another thought, enslaved to another face,

like an image enchained to another time.

It is I who choose whether to love or not,

holding the rose as the suicide’s blade–it rains,

no more sudden than the breezes this way.

The mind once again complete in its knowing.

Her indifferent eyes see through the mist

where images permanent drift through dust–

for whatever happens if not even this?

O how the cloudscape changes beyond my seeing eye.

Death shall come despite our waiting to die.


The Man who would be Thunder

There was one Remulus who lingered upon a hill,

watching the self-swording lightning bolts, standing still

and poised in the barbed poise of a dangerous will.

He lifted a stiff arm and–blinking deep, dropped.

Where his final seeking caught light, something eloped,

as it winked before it swung round and eloped.

Hearing the rip-rap of rain, the cinder bird arose

flailing her wings towards wonder. Conscious of a pose,

the counter-pose–convinced of a sultrier clause,

she halloos the transparent rivers with a screech,

her black wings which zest another zenith, and beseech

the white of the waves that break upon the beach.


Born in 1996, Susmit Panda is a poet living in Kolkata.


Viscous Verses is edited by Raquel Balboni and Ben Mazer


Check out all the art and columns of January's Boston Compass at


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