**Many contributions to be found on Instagram under the hashtag #bookedoutsundays. The ones below are mine (first of each) and those that have a private profile on Instagram. You can click on their names to find them on Instagram.

The Glass On The Edge Of A Table

by Lubna Khan:

I am not a sentient being; I knew that when I was pulled out of the assembly line in a very loud factory, carelessly shucked into a box with fifteen others identical to me. Well, we would have been identical if we weren’t so closely quartered and gathered our own experiences in the form of small chips and scratches. I don’t feel them, I don’t feel anything really and I guess that gives me the objective lens that Sarah keeps talking about in defence of her particular affliction. Alcohol gives her objectivity I hear her say, a deliverance from the emotional baggage that would otherwise be so detrimental to her.

Sarah’s life has been a series of cheap transactions just like mine. She bought me at a thrift store. I wasn’t looked at or examined. Maybe I caught a rare light and threw a glint in her direction, maybe I could sense the alcohol on her. Like attracts like. Filth belongs with filth. She took me home that day, or whatever “home” is to a cheap, second-rate glass. I sat in the worn-out plastic bag by her door for days. I didn’t mind, I am used to passing my days in a state of numb stupor. Which is also why Sarah and I are alike. She uses me now. She fills me up sometimes to my brim and chugs at me with her stale pale lips. If I had senses, I would have known that she is an addict, her breath an indication of failed motivation, of resignation, of rotting organs. But what do I know, I am a glass, a means to an end, a tool. I didn’t come as a part of a fancy china set, indispensable to the careful arrangement of symmetry. My worth is only proportional to the liquids, transparent or tinted, that present themselves in Sarah’s shoddy one-bedroom apartment in surprising frequency. Sometimes I have peculiar looking powders dropped inside me along with what I assume to be putrid liquids from the speed with which Sarah gulps my contents. I know I have a film of sticky grease building in my edges. Just like Sarah, I think.

Seasons change. Some nights I am left on the table untouched, bearing witness to Sarah’s desperation as she drinks the rummy liquids straight from the bottle, gurgling now and humming next as she swallows, teetering at the edge of the sofa wishing for a fall into the dark oblivion of a blackout. I know because a glass can deduce; an inanimate object such as myself, if not for many perks does enjoy one of undisturbed observation. Unless I am picked up and used and now, I am an accomplice. Maybe that is why I seek the edge of the table. To be like Sarah, to teeter at the edge of a limbo. Be all in, fuck it. Because you see, we don’t shatter when we fall. We test the edge, tantalise the bottom of our reaches, the floor for me and consciousness for Sarah. I am not completely glass you see, I am a polymer. My humble beginning renders not a single fall incapacitating. Sarah is like me, toughened with compounds from low-life living. She blips in and out, her arm ushering me into my own blip. I know my fall creates a wasp of air as I see the minute hairs on her arm sway for a tiny moment. I lie here among the hair and dust on the grubby carpet, a small chip on my side. It will go unnoticed for now but it will have compromised my structural integrity for the future. I wait now, to be picked up again. If Sarah picks me up again.

 


By Malika Arif:
(Malika writes from the POV of a glass, the contents of which are poisoned)

Lightbulbs tinkering.
My body shivering.
My eyes are red and my body sore.
As I try to steady my feet I wonder so,
What time it is?
What day are we on? Still here I stand?I miss my warm haven,
The place of all grandeur and of my maven.
Alas I sigh, I am just another glass on the edge of the table.I am slowly losing all hope.
My mind counting what day or week,
when suddenly I find myself unable to ignore the growing reek.

Someone please awaken me from this dream-like streak.
It cackles and tackles me right into its mad-merry sleep.
My crystal now consumed with the deathly red cherries.

I move my mind away from this,
Trying to frantically search for someone’s face to greet.
I sigh again with what’s left of life to finally meet.

As my body slowly grinds to a standstill,
there is something I catch in my narrowing vision.
Breaking into a smile, I find two endlessly deep blue set of eyes.

Stop!

My mind slaps me awakened.
I muster my strength to scream,
but the last of my bubbles fizzles away to flee.
How could this actually be happening to me?The old man who brought me home splayed lifeless across our study floor.
His eyes wide open,
Vacant yet beautiful as the mighty deep blue sea.With warmth he held me,
Of fond memories we’d talk,
Moments turned to treasures which I had learned to stock.As I gather myself I realise,
Tens of thousands of shadows file in queues.
I hear them whispering,
What a hauntingly touching place to rule.
My soul now terrified finds solace in a heaving large man.

But the mistresses’ clever tricks paint me a black-blue so thick.
I ponder with guilt if I could really go astray?
Be a cold blooded murderer of my sweet old man?
I cannot imagine this sitting here with the masked hangman.

This table now my glass prison,
Sitting so close to the sharp edge of his sword,
He promises which he will ultimately drop.

I say, please find me.


By Rasna Razak:

 

Time and again, the universe bestows us with inevitable phenomenons, some in our favour, some far from what we can abide. Our minds, with the limitless perceptions of an experience, often tend to brood over the moments we have faked smiles rather than the ones that have filled our hearts upto the brim. And over all those layers of chaos, we master at creating a persona that overshadows our true thoughts, lest be deemed non-content and disgruntled. But one, who has given fate more chances than it truly deserves, knows, it is only a matter of a diastole before the next storm is forecasted. Or sometimes it knocks at our doorstep of oblivion, without any warnings of tide and fury. And as time fritters away, our hearts demean the blissful opportunities and seizes them away into the blackhole, making us ever so cautious, solely of the awaiting storm. For it doesn’t matter if life leaves the glass half full or half empty. It doesn’t even matter if it is half or full – as long as the glass resides at the edge of the table, waiting for one nudge, to spill its volatile contents and bring mayhem, we pay no heed to the rays desperately trying to bring us some shine. Thus, never ends, the beings’ quest for true bliss.


Spoken Word by Imran Ahmed:

Normalised to the trembles, I assemble
shards of a memory, wherein I once feared of being disassembled;
Like hearts shattered by hammers, and leaving the blood

splatters on walls, I fall and fail in the unrequited feelings of love.

Cheated by dust in my eyes,

I am blinded by the double-edged meanings of love,
Climb ladders to high hopes and dream from above,

Then jump to conclusions with the least bit of trust…

And meet the ground, now a broken illusion,

My hopes basking through these particles of translucence,
I remember when I was once whole and awake,

Before these thoughts had become a mere expression of nuisance,

Love is a lens I’m clueless when I gaze through,

so I pour my heart out for you to feel my pain too,
I wonder if it’s the height or the fall that enables,
My fate,
like this glass at the edge of the table,
I await my fortune at the end of this fable.

By Tracy Tez:

A crystal so endearing
So well resonates to my Canvas
It reflects colours unheard with dints of sparkle
While my canvas plays with

Chromatic and monochromatic shades of life

So clear & impeccable the crystal is!

It has taken the form of a glass so shimmery
But the colours on my canvas
Has got it all, ghost white to cocoa browns

Segueing into each other, like my dreams cascade onto the next , at three A.M

The crystal is now on the edge of the table

Waiting for a trigger, a shoutout , to shatter  into a thousand shimmery pieces
What could have dodged its sparkle?
What could have placed it in such a perilous phase?
My mind, dubbed till now as my ‘canvas’
Is too on the edge, waiting for
The chromatic tales and shades of life

To turn into vantablack, or even more?

Now what could force another trigger

To paint them with life once more?
How to get  the crystals to endure its glory and finest form?
How to save my canvas from turning into a  night sky’s portrait,  sans stars or the Moon

Or my mind from segueing into a blank  space?


By Maham Munawar Quraishi:

From the periphery of life , I emerge;

With a clandestine vision

Of transparency and avidity

Of some pain and austerity,

 

Flowing through robust channels

To collect pods of happiness and vigor

And pluck away any babel and din

Albeit, transpiring  uncertainty some where,

 

The barricade of trepidation is the limit

I tend to break lose of every inhibition

We have fed hearts on fantasies and desire

It now seems to be galloping upon raging fire,

 

Like a hive of bees in unison

And birds flying in formation at sunset

The heart beats the mind

Sloshing like waves and racing afar, back and forth.

 

Untouched by time and fury

I am the glass on the edge of the table

Half empty or half full who cares,

Conserving the juggernaut of buoyancy

Whilst soaring with incandescent love for life


By Syed Umair Ahmed:

Here comes Friday and behold another prompt.
Bemused with words and phrases, my mind is getting swamped.
Guess I have to do; what I do best, that is rhyme.
To folks shaking heads, “Hey!  I get it,
Atleast it ain’t a crime.”🤷🏻‍♂️

‘Glass on the edge of the table’ is what I have to use,
As pragmatic as I am, its making me confused 🙄
A prompt like this, so deep and profound
With a zillion connotations, it is so abstruse.

One way of looking is to see the glass as life,
Unpredictable and dubious, like a blunt edged knife.
Hardships and reality is what we should overcome and face;
They say, ‘if you aren’t living on the edge,
then you’re taking too much space’💪.

Im so good at this now, people call me Dr. Poet.
Thanks for the compliment, judged on my own merit.
Cant wait for the next one, until next time;
Hope you all enjoyed reading, the pleasure was all mine.

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