The mother


old age women Labour

There is no photo of mother’s in the house
On every occasion for pictures she’s either
busy inside looking for some misplaced thing
or out gathering twigs, grass and water
In the forest she even encountered a tiger once
but kept her cool
She drove the beast away, cut her grass and returned
To light the fire and cook for everyone

I never fetched the firewood or cut the grass from the forest
and for the matter
never ever lit the fire,
I often sat on the heavily carved ancestral chair
on which one posed for picture now and then.
On mother’s face I can now see
The picture of a forest
Glimpses of firewood grass and water
And some object misplaced in the house.

~Manglesh Dabral~

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