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•   A BIANNUAL LITERARY MAGAZINE BROUGHT TO YOU BY DESI WRITERS' LOUNGE   •

Volume 5


Fall 2009


Verse

Osman Khalid Butt

Written by
Osman Khalid Butt

Osman Khalid Butt is a twenty-seven year old actor, director, choreographer, writer and video-blogger based in Islamabad, and is also a self-professed struggling-artist stereotype. A journalism graduate, he is the co-founder of Desi Writers’ Lounge, as well as poetry editor and creative consultant for Papercuts. He has also remained a freelance writer for Instep, The News, as well as the Editor of the web-zine Text Teen, and wrote his first screenplay for the indie-horror movie ‘Siyaah’, which released nationwide in 2013. Though he has dabbled in television, TVCs and film, theatre remains his first love; he has directed four productions under the banner of his company, ‘The Living Picture Productions’, one of which he wrote himself. He has also collaborated with the Lahore Grammar School, Islamabad, directing three plays with its student body, and regularly gives theatre workshops across the country. He says he juggles all of this by drinking too much Pan Galactic Gargle Blaster for his own good.

        
      
       
            
              

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I Razzle Dazzled ‘em, Just Like You Said, Billy


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“Well, I was in such a state of shock that I completely blacked out; I can’t remember a thing. It wasn’t until later, when I was washing the blood off my hands, I even knew they were dead.” – Velma Kelly, Chicago.

He would

Force my trousers down

Hand-me-downs,

Play upon Freud’s fantasy,

Claim it was his right as parent

to

Break me in.

He was a failed man; a poor man’s poet

(“Sensitive, a painter,”)

Waste of God’s good clay; sullying the sacred with

his own brand of intoxication.

(“I guess you could say we broke up because of artistic differences. He saw himself as alive. And I

saw

him

dead.”)

Let me out

of

this gilded cage,

This four-post dungeon.

I am innocent.

I can

show you the remnants of

the serrated metal stud

from

my father’s belt; where my

flesh would produce a

perfect blend – an imprint in bold of

royal blue and

sea-green, that his acrylic paints

could not.

There? Isn’t that better?

And what of the soul – and the emotional pockmarks I see

Reflected from within my mind’s eye – that lies

Discolored -

Knocked-knees, skinny legs, pallid

complexion; not mine, you’re the Devil’s, you’re

Not mine.

Fall for my doe-eyed, deer caught in headlight

(pick one)

expressions already, won’t you?

The twelve seated by my side

Sure are.

You can try but you’ll

Never

see the fire and brimstones that cackle within

these baby blues.

So I took the

(“..shotgun off the wall, and fired two warning shots. Into

his

head.”)

gun he hid in his bureau –

And I forced his trousers down, and

Broke him in with the cane he used

To break me

When

I was especially naughty.

- and fired, then fired some more.

And when my momma came

And I couldn’t take the bitch wailing

Like a record played on repeat

Oh God, My God, What Have You Done What Have You

Done

I was

just

so

Scared.

It must have been my sweat

The serpentine liquid making its way to my

Crooked, shaking fingers

And the trigger was pressed

Once

more.

Please believe me.

My palm rests on

This Bible; I tell no lies.

He was a wicked man; and I

His seed

His indentation. Him.

Doesn’t your sacrosanct epic

urge one to

purge themselves of

wickedness?

Believe me.

How can you not?

Because through your uproar

And excess, you overlook

The fact that beyond

this crime,

The batting eyelids

(“Razzle dazzle ‘em!”)

The feigned innocence, I am,

after all,

Only eight years old.

Note: The quotes in parentheses feature lyrics from the Cell Block Tango, a song from the play/film ‘Chicago.’

 

 

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