Abha Iyengar

You Can’t Be Too Careful With Love

Everything will wilt and fade
And die. Except love
Which will not, for
It is forever fresh
When alive.

When love dies it
Does not wilt and fade.
Its death is sudden, instant.
It lies in your arms, 
A heavyweight
Manacling you, wrapping
Your arms tight
Against your chest.
Chaining your feet
Rendering you immobile
Drying your eyes,
Your throat. You struggle
To survive.

But you bend and stoop
Wilt and fade, and that is how
You die. Wilting and fading
Because of love. Carrying
A dead love that goes nowhere
Taking you with it
Slowly, painfully, so merciless
In its taking
As it was generous in its giving.

You can't be too careful
with love.


The fire burns
Under a Spring sky
A life done.

Another goodbye 
Each day turns 
Into an inferno.

Goodbyes are hard
Memories remain
Trying to breathe.

Tying up loose ends,
The threads unraveling
These unsteady hands. 

Clutch at straws
They ignite easy
Ash rims the eyes.

Abha Iyengar is an award-winning, internationally published poet, author, editor, and British-Council-certified Creative Writing mentor. She was longlisted for the WE Kamala Das Award 2020 . Abha won the Kota Press Anthology contest (U.S.A., 2003). She was a Featured Poet at Prakriti Foundation’s Poetry Festival 2010. She has eight published books to her credit, and her collection of poems is titled, “Yearnings”.  Her poems have been included in various journals and anthologies, most recently Sahitya Akademi’s, “The Lie of the Land” (2020). “Parwaaz” (her poem-film) won the Special Jury Prize in Patras, Greece.