Illumination Order for Species Hunting

Sneha Subramanian Kanta


another species. Exile begins in the throat.

Wreckage in a deciduous forest. An array

of filigree shadows flake from the scapula

of sky. Fire amid a singular woodhouse in

the prairie. A carnage of ruin. Dried grass

begins to wither before the sun comes out.


Fading light turns into light by scattering

the hems of its wick. I name each bead in

your rosary a different flower. Owls begin

to hoot. Follow the scent of the cedar that

leads into a garden where squadrons of

pelicans rest. Winds soak your earlobes.

Ghosts float by the shore. I wolf my throat.


A clove-toothed sky. Call the language

an erasure of the growl. Blood rises in

tidal frequencies for every bone bent

in light. Silence stalks icicles into the

shape of a bunch of zephyranthes.

Sky on the ground. Bluebell woods in

spring. Faith glides through the wings of

a butterfly. At the end when the scales fall

from its wings, the chitin layer remains.


A wound is a place of burial. A prism of

colors after rain. Anchialine ponds with

their connection to an ocean. The sound

of thunder. Call the wound a language. An

avalanche that gains momentum as snow

descends from a slope. A mountain crest.


I gather a fallen flower for every corpse. The

sky yields a cloud with every breath. Effulgence

collates three layers of visible topography in its

tendons of light. A blooming in the mouths of

ghosts. Seashells are a form of evolution for the

way they don’t dissolve into oceans. An oyster

pearl is a labor. A protection against a grain of

sand. Animals wear the labor of animals as a

cloak of grace. Remember the ferocity in every

element. Camphor outlines that fold into skins.


I make a list of the sounds that arrive through

consecutive successions. Rain that lashes over

a concrete structure falling over iron railings.

An orchestra of crickets. Hums from an oil

lamp as wind grazes over the still expanse.

The thrum of waves glistening over rocks.


In an open space where birches grow, ghosts

gleam in the interludes of mist and sky. I give

you a wreath of dead leaves. A brook flows

into forest-recesses where animals stand to

drink water. The forest is an ossuary. A body

that opens into blood in a fraught country.

The magnitude of space between animals.

A contingency of harm being filled by snow.

A hibernation. A prayer for flight. Swallows

flying in the sky. A redemption for inanition.


A collapse of hues from the sun into a puddle

of rainwater. A smudge of collisions. I call out to

the sound of your voice as the smell of a spruce

tree in early spring as the roots of a banyan tree

reach further into earth. Stars above damp soil

covered in foliage. Birdsongs growing dimmer.

The fragrance of the night-blooming cereus in

summer. Sky as the tincture of an abalone shell.


A pledge for fishes. You taste water as tide-hems

rise. Craters of moon-debris fall into the ocean.

Your prayer voice. The condensation of fog-light.

A thick sleet of rain moving across the ocean in a

gauze of gray. Animal sheltering the body of an

animal in the downpour. Air scrapes muddy elms.


The rhythm of a myrtle tree. When your bones

press against the bed I begin to recite a prayer

for the intact sky. The hemisphere fills with

forsythias as fruits begin to harvest in fields.

Before your hands begin to till the soil there

is a silence that pervades from beyond the hills.

The body leaves sediment at a touch. A row of

ducks paddle out of the lake to rest on a ground

of leaves. A subsumed warmth. An orthography

of syllables. I place a hymn into a seashell for you.


A single note from the harpsichord. Segments of

dawn dither into a lulling rain. Animals carrying

a flower in between their teeth. The crash of a giant

meteor into fields. Weaver finches make nests out

of a gathering of leaf fibre. The forest carries an

accordion that reverberates through a foggy lake.

A muffling of the pulse. Gravity against a force.


An immortal flesh carries through the warm

currents that push into another direction. A

flurry of constellations fall onto earth leaving

the shiniest trail. An illumination of silence

cradles holy fragments. Cloudbursts in the

interior of a mountain range. Clusters of ice.

A body heavy with rain. A silver echo of the

night scattering snowflakes like pomegranate

seeds. Everything glistens. Even blighted stars.


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