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The marketplace of mellow orange

Diya Kandhari

Amidst the temperamental discourse of dinner table conversation,
Urban vacation,
Unwashed dishes and disagreements,
and clothes hung out to dry,
Summer arrives.
Through Palestinian palaces;
Concrete domes glinting under sultry skies,
Through the mellow orange of phulkari dupattas over the translucence of white clothing,
Summer arrives.
Somewhere I see grandmothers,
Talk of puddles; splattered and jumped in,
Mango orchards near village homes,
Sherbet coloured lips within.
I see uniformed children devouring ice lollies,
At the nearby English school,
The older ones enjoying cold liquor,
On roadside plastic stools.
In the red of betel on walls,
And the bottlenecks of modern India.
You see it’s been days since the autumnal funeral,
The wintry pallor has faded away,
Wallowing monsoon has cried and gone,
And thus summer arrives on this fine day,
And thus the old and the ordinary,
Breathe into a new existence,
Their mundane persistence,
Lost behind the tales of Theros and Damia,
the triumph of farmers, and the taste of cold water on a hot day.


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