Gabriel coming down the mountain,
Gabriel with his face like wax.
Sound of his wings, what does he bring?

He kneels like a skin full of liquid,
raises his god empty eyes.
The girl is sullen, the stranger is cold
and inattentive for a suitor.

This is the edict from the silver city:
———-You will raise a soldier, he will die
———-Your arms will hold his bird-bones, they will roll
———-your lap, into the ground, and his soul into the sky.

She hears him listless,
her face too is waxen.
The jewel of the good life passes
to another girl; for a son like this,
she must stitch a shroud.
Outside, it is summer,
December still half a year away
The hay is dry, it needs rolling.

Satyajit Sarna is a writer and lawyer from New Delhi, India. His first novel, The Angel’s Share, was published in 2012 by HarperCollins. His poetry has earlier been published in the First Proof 2: New Writing from India by Penguin Books, and by the online journals The Literateur and The Sunflower Collective.

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