The poem sketches the landscape of a resilient South Asian woman’s un/conscious as she resists socio-religious norms that condemn her to be bereft of love. The woman is thirsty for love due to unreflective customs of a society that makes women crazy by refusing to consider the significance of love for a normal happy life. The poem embeds Urdu words within English to convey the indigenous intensity of emotions, from different levels of craziness on one hand and multiple levels of intensity of love on the other hand. The poem’s title “Kamli” conveys a higher level of craziness in which one loses one’s worldly self to achieve transcendentalism through love. In the South Asian Sufi tradition, transcendental love is achieved through Ishq—an all-encompassing love for the divine. Love, the poem suggests, is sacred and heals like an Amaltas tree.

Author Biography

Dr. Ayesha Perveen is currently working as Assistant Professor at the Virtual University of Pakistan. She is passionate about writing poetry and primarily writes about Pakistan and South Asia. Her poetry is an attempt to unearth the rhythm of ordinary, everyday life which is often invisible to many people. Her poems have been published in New Writing, Down in the Dirt, Poetry and Covid Anthology, and FemAsia, among others. Email: ayesha@vu.edu.pk.