Blueberry.

Unknown Painting by Joseph Zbukvic
Painting by Joseph Zbukvic

 

As I clutch his hand and walk away from school, I ask him, “Can I have ice cream later?”. He nods and strides ahead quickly, while I try catching up with him. I try to walk fast, trying to fix my brown bob and adjust my little bag on my tiny shoulders. My cheeks turned red from the winter breeze. Unable to match with his pace, he picks me up and gently places me on his shoulders.

I could see the world from there. I could view the tops of people’s heads while they passed by. I could see the buildings, the trams, the statues and trees all better. It used to be nice to not feel the distress of not being able to view places while I strolled.

My mother imagined I would be spoiled if I would always demand to sit on his shoulders. So I asked him whenever only we both walked together. Though he knew how much I loved observing, for all the drawings I made of the things I saw outside, nature I loved being present in and the peculiar details of certain personalities I saw.

I vividly remember as soon as I was placed, with each step he hummed, like a soldier marching. “Hmm, hmmm!” he sang in a deep voice as he confidently paced in synchronicity while we head towards the ice cream shop.

We arrive and he places me down, asking me to select the flavours. I was never the person who would follow suggestions. So even though my father asked me to try pistachio, I would always go for the most unusual looking ice cream colour. I pointed at blueberry and looked up at the young woman in her apron. She smiled and asked in Italian, “So you’ve picked blueberry? Any other flavour you would like to add sweetheart?” I looked around with wide eyes, examining every flavour. I could not read by then, so I could only distinguish their uniqueness with the colour or perhaps if any fruit was drawn on the placards. I nodded in negative and waited for my ice cream to be handed over.

My father was right. Pistachio is indeed worth the try. But I am glad I made my own choices. I was given the space to learn from my own experiences. He and I are uncannily similar when it comes to our wants to explore. He learns from me and I learn from him. And together we grow, understanding each other.

The lady in the apron looks at me like I am the purest form of joy breathing. Perhaps I was. My concentration was fixated upon the curiosity of tasting that blue coloured ice cream. And it was all. All the worry was there. Whether it would disappoint me, and I would have come back again some other day to try another flavour.

 

 

Eternal Lullaby

leon-perrault-mother-with-child

She hummed to me,
a faint lullaby
etched in a corner,
of my numb mind.

Her wrinkled hands,
caressed my scalp in pauses,
running her thick fingers
through my tangled hair.

I know this cradle song
since I started to utter words of my own,
and carefully listen to her sing
the story of the king,
who fights the monster alone.

I watch the white walls,
project me as the king,
battling my monsters
and return home in victory.

Suddenly her voice breaks.

She pauses, and I know why.

But again, she continues to sing,
this time on sadder notes.
Her fat lap and stout fingers,
give more comfort,
than the dull hospital ward,
and the foreign pillow.

My mother is beautiful,
in her grace and strength,
concealing her inner devastation.

I am not afraid to die,
for I spent my last breaths
in a place I call home.

My mother’s eternal lullaby.

Sukanya. ©

Work.

 

Alex Pillin.jpg
Artwork By Alex Pilin

 

The dark sheets are tangling,
and so is my spirit to keep myself awake
in the wee hours of the morning.

I have to work
and by work, I intend
lending my knowledge and substance
to thieves smiling in suits.

They call it called work.
The ultimatum of fifteen years
of dreaming with open eyes
of having the power to change.

I am being consciously robbed by society.
And my people are the accomplices
because of their worldly possessions
of talents and the ability to dream were snatched too

They want you to exchange
these treasured belongings of yours
like your gift of creating magic with sounds
or evoke feelings with mere words

for coloured paper with unmatched worth
they put a price tag on your ways of life
ask you to sell your worth

in replacement for attractive litter
calling commodities obligations of life.

You know, you know all.
Yet you prefer to blindfold your eyes
and enjoy the distress

Your real riches are validation
You celebrate sadness
Your value misery
And misery you chase to seek,
and recommend your loved ones too.

Like pills, society prescribes it
drugs themselves of ignorance.
My ancestors did it, and so will I.
I will go to work too.

 

 

Sukanya.
©reserved.