Kashiana Singh

Your Lotus Gaze; I am a Shrine: Kashiana Singh

your lotus gaze

Your birthing is of unusual intervals
Your equanimity afloat on aftermaths
Your resistance rises in imperfections
Your voice is made of seasonless earth
You unpick whiteness
with your shadows

make it blush with quietness of colors
your petals close gently over each word
each tongue a memory, bleeding azure
into its veins. your birdsongs perch on
upright spines, even as you wait inside
pods of a thousand shimmering seeds
each seed drowning into history, rising
towards a vision of awkward blooming
million lotus suns ready to be released

I urge her, this America, to receive, to
be absent enough to be vacant enough
to be still enough, to let her fault lines
show hurt enough, to be tall enough
to be Shyamala Gopalan enough, to be
innocent enough, to wear a crown made
with flowers, that are not flowers enough
to walk far, to walk deep into discomfort
enough, to change enough
to be America enough
to face square & fair
the frugal dawn of a moist lotus gaze
present between both water and earth


*your lotus gaze, for Vice President Kamala Harris. Wishing her presence and perspective of a lotus on her journey.


I am a shrine

I am a shrine
of my own silence
prayers echo within
my temple, dancing
inside carved pillars
a resonance, an altar
I am made of carved shadows that hover over our gurgling pond
I stand in places that are tart with stories that made children laugh
I look into the rain. Into the rain that looks like sand falling into the
stem of an hourglass; I am then a hummingbird invoking flush songs
I am the sachet of sandalwood my maa saved inside the geometry
of her handknitted kilims. Late in the evening I dance to the rainbow of
my scarves. Late in the evening, the sky lights up the color of five spice
I am then a taboo woman
my prickly cactus veins
breaking my night into a rash

Kashiana Singh embodies the essence of her TEDx talk - Work as Worship into her every day. She proudly serves as Poetry Editor for Poets Reading the News. Her poems can be found on Rattle, Poets Reading the News, Oddball Magazine, Café Dissensus, amongst others. Kashiana’s chapbook Crushed Anthills from Yavanika Press in 2020 is a journey through 10 cities and she is currently knitting a new collection, Woman by the door. She lives in Chicago, is moving to North Carolina, and carries all her geographical homes within her poetry.