Bridge to Global Literature

Let’s all remember that more and more poetry gets lost without earnest attempts at translation.Read poetry here to get a glimpse of the rhythms and resonances of languages you don’t know.

Bedrock – Rochelle Potkar

Jan 8, 2022 | Poetry | 2 comments

We are given in to the roughness of the seas,
made to catch its erratic blue between our irises
taught of winds but not of sails
and never the ship.

Shipbuilding isn’t a skill we learn since birth.
That is discovery.

The bhagavad-gita is a logline,
its script in the fulcrum of its seed
the tree subverted —
growing through roots under
the surface of a psychic stampede.

For how is it possible for humanity,
to leave the gravity of labor
disconnecting it from fruit?

How can we train our fingers to sow seeds
but not chisel shaft, sheath, sickle, and scythe
for harvest and reap?

… sow seeds and let the rain decide when it came?
balancing what we controlled and what we didn’t?
Half of life spent confusing the two.
Most of life spent in controlling that
which we didn’t control:

plan on executing the seas, cartographing tides,
calibrating plate shifts,
when our ships withered in its decks, sails, seams,
masts, n’ bodies?

And when we find the ship
after a long search through
a hard ocean
lying at the side of the shores, it is just the starting point.

To build it…
because it’s the only ship we will ever have,
the only ship we will ever know.

the labor of our palm lines

Rochelle Potkar

Rochelle Potkar

Fictionist | Poet | Critic | Curator | Editor | Translator | Screenwriter,  Rochelle Potkar is the author of Four Degrees of Separation, Paper Asylum, Bombay Hangovers, and the co-author of The Coordinates of Us/सर्व अंशांतून आपण.(


  1. A.peace author

    Thanks Rochelle fir this masterpiece.

  2. Rochelle Potkar

    Thank you, A.peace author for your appreciation.



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