She remembers from inside the story,
inside the forest’s heart (a flush of green):
a dowry of twigs. Tree trunks as thick as lies.
When she is allowed, she misses herself,
covets the clean corners where her bones
meet, the dull pulse of her tongue on his.
All those misplaced stars, a misery
she can’t find. She has killed things
(though it is forbidden) with her hands
(the wedding mehndi long-faded),
has eaten on the wrong day, forgotten
to fast. She has pulled the strings
of the jungle behind her like a black net,
a wide-mouthed yawn. She holds it tight
so it can’t grow when she isn’t looking.