Shelter – Padmini Krishnan

Shelter

You will find her in any secluded spot;
a dark corridor or
in the farthest corner 
of a bus stand. Her body
is a room for many men,
some cruel, some scornful,
but all tigers in their world,
leaving their mark
as she lies down,
her hand like
a sticky paper attached
to bones, her legs
clamped to the sheets
and her heart like a 
delicate worm
in its last throes

She lives to see the dawn’s tender
glow on the waiting earth,
a dewdrop trickling down
a tiny bud, chocolate bars
shared with her friends,
a printed dress with big flowers
and hope that her body
would be a shelter to
someone, not just another room.

Padmini Krishnan was raised in India and now resides in Singapore. She writes free verse poetry, haiku, and short stories. Her recent works have appeared in the Stardust Haiku, Ariel Chart, Mad Swirl, Page & Spine, and The Literary Yard. She blogs at www.call2read.com.