By Sutanuka Ghosh Roy
She is Rumki
No one knows whether she is a Muslim or a Hindu
She mops the floor in a sari shop in the city
Babu tells there are insects in the air
He closes the shop.
Rumki decides to go back to her village
Goes to the estation, the trains are closed
The buses are not plying
Decides to walk, she starts
The mid-day Sun at her head
Makes her hungry,
Chews a green chili and drinks water
Kneads the maps of her village
Cements the cracks.
She will walk until she reaches her village.
Spring in My Grandma’s Closet
Does it remind her of the cheli
she draped as a child bride?
Sunlight peeps through the window;
she giggles — her bare gum protrudes.
The breeze ruffles her white mane.
Grandma falters a step or two;
she gathers her thaan and soft bones
as she enters the verandah clutching the railing.
Granny cranes her neck to find a primrose waiving at her.
Cheli: Small sari worn by little girls in Bengal
Thaan: Borderless white sari widows were forced to wear
Dr Sutanuka Ghosh Roy is Assistant Professor and Head Department of English in Tarakeswar Degree College, The University of Burdwan. She did her doctoral dissertation on Two Eighteen Century British Women Poets: Hannah More and Lady Mary Wortley Montagu. She has been teaching at the undergraduate and postgraduate level for years. She is currently engaged in active research and her areas of interest include Eighteenth Century literature, Indian English literature, Canadian Studies, Post colonial Literature, Australian Studies, Dalit Literature, Gender Studies etc. She has published widely and presented papers at National and International Seminars. She is a regular contributor of research articles and papers to anthologies, national and international journals of repute like The Statesman, Muse India, Lapis lazuli, Setu etc. She is also a reviewer, a poet and a critic.
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