Yash Pandit, Sarah Aldama
Piece by Yash Pandit. Image titled “Founder’s Garden” by Sarah Aldama.
At the festival of Bodgeshwar
A young couple on the Ferris wheel laugh.
Suddenly, it spins too fast;
The girl, afraid of falling,
Screams and grabs his shirt
Right above where his heart is supposed to be,
And embraces him.
The young man, already fallen,
Holds her close and sneaks in a kiss,
Wondering if there was ever
A better way to spend 50 rupees.
Sea-tarnished caramel skin, a cocoon,
For eyes still heavy with weeping.
Wraps a young boy who drags wreckage
Of a dingy broken trawler, remnants of yesterday’s storm.
Today there is no catch, no food,
No parental supervision.
At dawn the sea gouges, nooses and spreads its palms across the bosom of the shore,
Leaving no evidence but wet sand of this brief love-affair.
Tender hammers erode and engulf polished-black rocks at Vagator,
All fortresses crumble under prolonged vestal love.
The night blankets all into a seamless expanse, horizons segue winds to compose a foaming symphony of love,
Only wet feet now can tell land from sea.
“Nothing that grows here goes waste-
The fruit we eat,
The trunk is used for canoes,
The midribs are turned into mats.
The leaves, dried and thatched are used as roofs”- says Pedro,
Who runs a coconut farm near Bicholim.
From inside the hut runs a boy of 10,
With a scythe he dexterously cuts the coconut, the water jumps out.
He hands them to us, breathlessly.
“I pay you to work”- Pedro twists his ear.
“Not to play.”
On this land where the sun goes to sleep,
As we hold hands,
A restless shiver surges through the winds.
People wonder if the bell tolls
Somewhere, a fisherman hides his hunger
Under the opaque blanket of night;
His wife ponders over an empty stove,
Wishing a wish that nobody seems to fathom.
Here, as we hold hands,
The sky blushes and reveals bronze tracks of shooting stars.
There are no names for the shades in your eyes,
Yet these breathless moments spent in holding you, never seem to pacify.