The Wardrobe’s Best Dressed: Ellen Kombiyil’s “Histories of the Future Perfect”



Looking back, we spill from the car onto a black expanse that is not

It is nighttime; therefore lakes and lawns are visual equivalents of

If in moonlight Y flings her beer, then I in unison flick my hair.

I is equivalent to Y and Z, milling around the shrubbery.

Only the grass is certain, certain of an equation. Only the lawn
     resisting shimmering refuses a replacing.

Let I rest against the tree, a solid that is splintering.

If night-bark furrows, then history can be shed.

Let sprinklers equal X, an absence that is manifest.

Now solve for bare feet glisten. Now step on constellations.

This selection comes from Ellen Kombiyil’s book Histories of the Future Perfect, available now from Great Indian Poetry Collective. Purchase your copy here!

Ellen Kombiyil is the author of “Histories of the Future Perfect” (2015). A recent transplant from Bangalore, India, where she lived for nearly 11 years, she is a founder of The (Great) Indian Poetry Collective, an mentorship-model literary press specializing in innovative books from India/Indian diaspora. She is a four-time Pushcart Prize nominee and has read, performed or taught workshops at the annual Prakriti Poetry festival in Chennai, the Raedleaf Poetry Awards in Hyderabad, and Lekhana in Bangalore. Originally from Syracuse, New York, and a graduate of the University of Chicago, she now lives in New York City with her husband and two children.

T.A. Noonan is the author of several books and chapbooks, most recently The Midway Iterations(Hyacinth Girl Press, 2015), Fall (Lucky Bastard Press, 2015), and The Ep[is]odes: a reformulation of Horace (Noctuary Press, 2016). Her work has appeared in Reunion: The Dallas ReviewMenacing HedgeLITWest Wind ReviewNinth LetterPhoebe, and others. A weightlifter, artist, teacher, priestess, and all-around woman of action, she is the Vice President and Associate Editor of Sundress Publications.


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