> Winter, Delhi, 1997

Winter, Delhi, 1997

Par | 2018-02-19T18:32:56+00:00 22 juin 2012|Catégories : Blog|

 

My grand­pa­rents in January
on a gar­den swing
dis­cuss old friends from Rangoon,
the par­lia­men­ta­ry ses­sion, chry­san­the­mums,
an elec­tri­ci­ty bill.

In the sha­dows, I eaves­drop,
eighth grand­child, per­iphe­ral, half-for­got­ten,
enve­lo­ped care­less­ly
by the great win­ter shawl of their affec­tion.

Our dis­sen­sions are cere­mo­nial.
I growl obli­gin­gly
when he speaks of a Hindu nation,
he waves a dis­mis­sive hand
when I threa­ten romance with a Pakistani cri­cke­ter.

But there is more that connects us
than speech fla­vou­red with the tart­ness of old curd
that links me flee­tin­gly to her,
and a blur­ry out­line of nose
that links me to him,
and there is more that connects us
than their daugh­ter who bir­thed me.

I ask for no more.
Irreplaceable, I belong here
like I never will again,
my cre­den­tials never in ques­tion,
my ter­tia­ry nook in a gnar­led fami­ly tree
non-nego­tiable.

 And we both know
they will never need me
as much as I, them.
The inequa­li­ty is com­for­ting.

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