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unified theory of the senses

An abandoned building. My thoughts,

squatting in unceded ground. My vision,

materializing sound. The foreshadowing

of floodlights. The shadows, congressed

at the periphery. & the darkness: speechless

at what happens under its protective cover.

You said every night grows wax wings that melt

in the light of day. There is no taking flight from inevitability,

you said. But when I say I can see in the dark,

what I’m really saying is I can hear a shadow.

Pinpoint an echo. Like a watchman tugging back the gate,

always seconds before your arrival. I am pinging the night

with a thousand sound waves, waiting for their safe return.

Ask me if I dream at night. I will tell you I do & I will tell you

in whose voice: the vibration of steadily approaching footsteps.

Nina Sudhakar is a writer, poet and lawyer. She is the author of Matriarchetypes (forthcoming), which won the 2017 Bird’s Thumb Poetry Chapbook Contest. Her poetry has appeared in Ecotone, TRACK//FOUR and Calamus Journal; for more, please see

nina sudhakar
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