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Home Hurts

by Sangavi Deepthi
(Chennai, Tamilnadu, India)


In his brow creases he crushes
the sound of my dreams. My dad.
Then he runs to peep in the dark
tank in our terrace. So many holes
yet so full?! He drowns some secrets
there again. His wet face knows
the address of many dark places,
except for my love parched eyes.

She continues to stir the cold tea.
The swirls seem like a song to her
blindfolded hurt. My mother. She
too hurries to light the agarbatti.
But the stench of her indifference
settles like a dark shadow on the walls.
She seems to live in a 'past'. She
walks past, looks past and moves past.

I watch him stand dangerously
close to the racing train with hands
tightly folded on his chest. As though
some of his mess might spill on the
stinking tracks. My brother. But he
can't (or wouldn't) recognize me on
an empty couch. I offer to untangle
his earphones but he says those are
his only family.

My maid akka walks-in coated in a
benign smile and with a tray of good
things to say to me. Her smile, is the
foreign land I wish to be lost in. When
my teacher asked us to write about our
sweetest memory, I draw the duck from
'The Ugly Duckling' story, that forgot to
take off. These days I let the poems
dance in my mouth and dump them in
my heart, confused if I should name
them as 'Lost in love' or 'Love is lost'
or maybe 'Home is where the hurt is'.

*****

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