Final Week June 2023
By Divya Venkateswaran 30th June 2023
I wish I could write the way I think
Incessantly, infinitely, frantically
To the point of suffocating thoughts
But I write nothing closely
My thoughts not in sync with my actions
Desperately fixing myself when nothing is broken
Gathering pieces which never shattered
An illusion I created on my own
My agony labelled me as unique
The way I see the world is not how it is
Mending the broken world around me
Allowing myself a sense of peace
Egotistical I am to fix others and ignore my flaws
Finding closure for the wounds inflicted on me
I am not patching myself up
Vanishing in the sound of silence
Outside of time in empty space
I am nowhere, I am nowhere
By Santosh Bakaya, 29th June 2023
I felt very lazy on this June Sunday morning. Nothing like lounging in the bed, looking at the ceiling, not exactly admiring the crisscrossing lines up there, but just lying down- with a blank mind- blissful. The blazing sunshine spilled through my window, and this colourful spill of light brought a smile to my face. Suddenly, a cloying fragrance of yesteryears came from somewhere and settled on me. The light slanted in thick, nebulous rays through the window, in a very tantalizing manner. I walked towards the window, my eyes fell on an old woman sitting in the shade of a tree in her garden, lost in thought. I had often seen that woman in that new flat, opposite our house. But within no time, a face superimposed itself on the woman’s face. Ah, it was my granny’s. There was a wistful look on her face, haloed by the jewelled light.
The old woman completely melted away, and it was now my granny, I was looking at, transfixed. Was she thinking of the times when granddad, as a tall, strapping youth of twenty, had waved to her, for the first time from the kadal*, while she, a fifteen-year-old, sat, blushing in the zoon dab*? Or the time, when attired in green, hand in hand, with grandad, she had meandered through the pine forests, spectacular, mystical and overpowering, huffing up steep slopes, then suddenly letting go of his hand, and galloping gazelle-like to merge with the lush, verdant greenery? Were her eyes, hunting for the silver lines in the dark clouds covering the sky? Was she recalling the time when two, youngsters sat on a gnarled log of wood, after having etched their names on the log? Maybe she was remembering the autumnal maple leaves crunching under their feet, singing songs of resurrection? Or, perhaps recalling the time when she had pointed excitedly towards a blue- eared kingfisher perched majestically on the railing of the crystal blue Dal Lake, and grandad, then a handsome young man, had smiled indulgently at her.
Blue kissed blue
wavelets of dappled silver
rippled in memory
*Kadal: A Bridge in Kashmiri
*Zoon Dab: A classic example of Kashmiri architecture, it used to be a balcony in the uppermost floor of the house, from where people would see the moon. [Zoon, meaning moon, and Dab meaning balcony.
Who ate my nuts?
By Snigdha Agrawal, 28th June 2023
Mother comforted her child
‘Why are you crying?’
In a quivering voice
the child replied 'Dante died!
Look at him lying bottoms up
Tummy bloated like a balloon
ready to burst
Mother poked Dante with a twig
His half-shut eyes opened quick
His bushy tail went into a spin
"Now you believe, Dante was just acting
Playing on your heartstrings
for a good reason.
"What's the reason? What's the reason?".
The child kept repeating.
"He ate too many nuts and got the loosies.
And now his stomach is rebelling"
"Oh! That explains how my nut bowl emptied"
said the child once again happy
Dante the squirrel had been up to no good
stealing what was not his.
“Dante has learned his lesson
Stealing is a vice that ends you in trouble
I hope my child from this you too
have learned a lesson".
By Barbara Anna Gaiardoni 27th June 2023
in my sister's
By SherinMary Zacharia, 26th June 2023
Probably the sky will be of
a different colour,
the air lighter, not smelling corpses
the water clear, not tasting blood
the grass green still, not burnt brown.
Food served after prayers
If those not silenced by explosions.
Cold nights under dark clouds
splashing waves clearing the boats
salty water showing the way to freedom.
Freedom in a world free of fear.
No one loses her dreams to someone’s choice
life would have a reason to live.
Heart never would beat faster than you run –
away from the sharp axes that follow
to chop tender wings and get away with
the grains collected when the sun was shining bright.