Was it strange, those days?
When we played hide and seek,
in cupboards for hours
knowing the seeker wasn’t even going to look
but we secretly wanted to be found?
Jumping that trampoline or the glass table till they both
When you were minding your business and I mine,
all the way to the hospital
when the car wheels
crunched my toes,
and your innocence
while you were
feeding red play-dough to unsuspecting cats?
Was it strange when you religiously sipped hibiscus nectar
or when I giggled until i threw up laughter
that you did thus?
Was it strange, the long hadududududus we chanted,
stealing a breath when the enemy team wasn’t looking?
Or when our ice-cream chocobars slobbered down the granite
and past those
tights with drastic runs?
Or that time you fell into the drain trying to grab a guava from the tree?
Or when we drove a baby taxi to avoid the traffic jams
only to be plastered paint by cricket fans?
Twin sisters sans any,
Vitamin c and a plethora of excuses in a rose garden
every Wednesday of color-coding monkey business
with lethal bites and haystacks in our needles?
Or when we recounted our long phone conversations,
Commiserating on disgraceful Saudi royal standards
and laughing when we drank the morning dew off leaves?
Was it strange, that we cried when we lost you in a circus,
Only to find ourselves on a loudspeaker?
Now, it is drizzling, and the roaches,
they don’t scare as much,
And I wonder…
Was it strange when I screamed and you dangled those cretins
until I woke up?
Or yelled JEM JEM JEM IS MY NAME!
with Loppy and Sony, and so many more haystacks,
that foul-mouthed mynah?
Was it strange, our acrobatics-led classes by visiting firangis
spelling out YMCA while the beggars looked disdainfully at the
sandpit residues plastered over our uniforms?
Was it strange that she used to call us and say
bennalai dakthey dakhtey dakhtey dakhtey mori jabo
standing in that creaky doorway
With pithas and panache?
Was it strange
That time the earth shook and we felt
had cracked the obstinate sky
coercing the heavens to stop clinging on to the drought?
Or more so that you bought Mayfair on your first roll of dice
and I landed in prison
after two days of not winning forty rounds of Ludo?
Is it strange, all these little remnants of kuasha
Writers, astronauts, magicians, chefs and
pinching pennies off our penny-pinching brethren,
or how far the seeds of those air-borne dreams
Were we as ecstatic then, that we could touch our toes,
or when we couldn’t touch them anymore when we grew up and became
Or that we had to try for years before we could do so again?
Or is it strange now, when we hardly even contemplate these toes anymore?