Lancaster Writing Awards 2018

3rd Place: Poetry 

Rachana Hegde 'Dull' (Hong Kong International School) 

Another dream where I'm trying to prove something.
The night chases itself until there is only light streaming

through the thin, white, curtains. My eyes are closed.
I can't remember how I arrived at this moment,

asleep at the desk in my bedroom, floor slick
with an oil spill of my blood. Behind my closed eyes,

I am watching a cat chase its tail. It is amusing,
this mess I have made. So much heaviness rests inside me,

I remain dull like the wet blade of a kitchen knife.
The open and shut of a window stirs me.

It is unnatural for the wanting to cease but
the hurt has escaped me, taken flight through a window.

Another dream asking the same questions:
Why am I like this? What if I deserved less?

The cat is playing with a mouse, as gentle
as a mother pouring salt onto a cut.

I am distracted by the paint spilling onto my bed,
staining my sheets turquoise, verdant, rose.

All this shimmering loveliness laid out before me and
I am too astonished to feast. Only days before,

I attended the rehearsal of my death, so tedious and
full of anticipation. There was little time to practice completion

or the art of filling a vacant body with color.
Not intending to keep my promises, I drank the paint.

This is another dream I trust will come to an end.
Still, sleep is all I need.