Ran through paddyfields repainting your feet. The wind’s favourite sport was to enamour your forehead with numbness.
Left alone in the backyard you trespassed – robbery of jackfruit and cashew apples you failed to guess were liquor.
Grew up to be a burning torch of unfulfilled desires. Painting every city with slang ridden verses and slurred tongues.
Later at thirty-seven you picked up the telephone, at the other end was your brother’s son, unaware of his uncle.
A rare instance of you returning – mother – now about to be extinguished into a memoir; you were late (absent) again. You crossed fifty.
Met your nephew, finally; transferred your leftover age into his and said a prayer – his hair felt like the first time your fingers ran through paddyfields.
So many trains dispersed, alas, we stood at the station watching you depart,

and then all of a sudden we gasped when a fruit crate was unloaded.

carrying the scent
of lost years

…mango breeze

Strolling Through My Old Neighbourhood Without Expecting Anything

Air was dense as the soda maker
deposited trays, bottles calibrated, dates missing
expired like my mom’s old embraces, signalling onwards
a protected cow controlling traffic, mostly mismanaging
mosque and temple collided
mutterings, quotes, chants, sayings, histories
the pouring of layered tea absolutely promising
a quiet two and a half minutes, bettered
by buttered bread and the incoming of fried eggs
a lady from nowhere with the voice of an old radio
releasing a flurry of preserved rants, madmen
laughing looking at alcoholics trying to pour
unfiltered water into a glass unwashed, traffic
lights becoming abstract videos over its curved face

Venturing on a nomad sans memory of puberty, matchstick
realised as a flaming excuse for killing a cigarette, bokeh
enhanced by moonlight and glow of oil lamps,
miscarriage of a meat seller’s bargain, a displayed brain,
liver, lungs, intestines and chops at the one eyed butcher,
lanterns hanging over a closing market contemplating
the night through barks and meows and bats flapping
figs dropping, overall

at winter’s death
old city
washed by noise


woke footsteps
print the street
– old traveller


a cockroach’s glance
carried by red sewers
meets a rat


phones scrolled
trap sad eyes
fingers cancelled

unaware the soda maker shuts shop, the Parsi restaurant
ageing alone into extinction releases a food blogger
I see my schoolteacher cross the street, but like last time
I digress and miss the chance to converse, ‘what a strange boy,
this loner,
he was always so
bad at being nice’


humid breath 

between the rain and I 

a steamed window

one kettle
brews a future sip
of both tea and mint


leafbird dashes

once grey air 

now flourescent green 

damp wood
quiet lungs
final monsoon