Mama binds my wounds slipshod, drippy-wet,
I watch crow overbalancing, crow flailing, crow falling off the wires.
In the dining room, Papa rubs at the sangria stains.
The guests calcify under my gaze & I trip, dissonant

in the company of men (their hard eyes gleam).
We discuss absolution until I am thinking death
over & over & over in long loops, diluted chai
lying untouched. In the distance a cow is being slaughtered,
and a woman crumbles beneath his touch, sari tangled
in the dirt. I become unclaimable, muscle my way
out of the gathering, jaw aching. Mama strikes me for
the first time in months & I am at the hospital again,
exhausted from anemia. They take me to a priest &
he flinches at the sight of my cut wrists. The exorcism
goes as planned but I’m evacuated from the house two
weeks later. I become an insomniac almost immediately,
try to lose myself in the seifs of my memory. I feel too
catastrophic (neighbors paint a sordid picture of me).
Some days I enjoy listening to the clattering percussion
of rickshaws, crow flapping its wings at me.


Rachana Hegde is a sixteen year old part-time poet from India who collects words & other oddities. You can usually find her reading on her kindle or sitting cross-legged on her bed, trying to brainstorm. She dreams about characters from abandoned writing projects and her poetry is forthcoming in The Fem and Textploit. Read more of her work at www.ink-smudgedfingers.tumblr.com. Find her on Ello, Twitter, and Goodreads.

Vagabond City Literary Journal

Founded in 2013, we are a literary journal dedicated to publishing outsider literature. We publish art, prose, reviews, and interviews from marginalized creators.