Old Poems

Reflections on a Lazy Sunday Afternoon…

On the verandah, lying on a chattai,

Soaking in the warmth of the sun,

Languorous stretches and a restless charm.

Can hear the groundnuts softly cracking up,

The neighbor’s cat takes a majestic sweep on the parapet, looks down disdainfully upon us,

and moves on, to observe the interesting tussle between the sparrows.

The spicy smells of lunch being prepared, waft through the windows of surrounding homes,

And make my pesky sister quiz me on what they may be.

What do you think is cooking, she asks.

And I look at a kite flying astray in the sky,

It doesn’t have a direction,

It’s probably guided by a young hand,

The gliding movements provoke a telling ache within me.

Ma asks me to sit up,

Soon I can feel soothing hot coconut oil touch my scalp and slowly trickle down my neck and follow the curve of my spine.

Noori comes running to offer slices of freshly cut amrud,

but I decline, and wait for the angoor.

Maya and I lie back on the chattai and begin our game,

She traces figures, people and animals with her chubby fingers on the clouds that are in no hurry,

The white wispiness makes us sigh, the sigh of childhood dreams.

Our eyes smile,

Our lips crinkle,

With the sun in our eyes and the taste of humor that is soon to fly.


The moon shades them in colors of grey,

an encounter amidst the ruffling leaves of the palm trees,

He steals an earnest glance, she decides to look the other way.

And then they watch the waves dance.

They toe the line,

And then cross it.

The feet sink in,

But the current tugs at them.

They stand at a distance from each other,

yet feel as if the touch couldn’t have been deeper.

The urging question in his eyes is answered by the fleeting smile on her lips.

He tries to take her hand,

she shakes her head and pushes it away.

He walks a step ahead,

And then she joins him in the trail.

The twain meets.

Droplets of rain touch their forehead and the wind sweeps across their bosom.

The rhythm is one, the two halves are one.

And the peeping shadows are mystified.


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