|Mariner's Reach, Denarau, Fiji.|
How many nights must you spend under a roof,
before you can call it a home?
Some say just thirty, others a thousand,
but I say to you – listen closely, my friend,
there’s no magic number, no theorem that proves
the time span that seals your claim.
A few aches are certain every time you move.
Thirty or thousand it’s all the same.
But there’s that horizon, oceans that heave,
a pink sky so breathtaking,
and a bird call can fling your life open.
Home has its place, but the wider world beckons,
your feet forget themselves and pack to leave,
done with walls and the same dawns breaking.
One step. And two. Dust eddies round your feet
and somewhere a welcome is waiting.
There’s that long horizon, pathways that twist
in and out of unknown forests.
The light is a tunnel that lures like a trap,
the ribs of leaves are rivers on a map,
the breeze writes gently on your back and lists
the things that can unravel rest.
And somewhere a welcome is waiting amidst
strangers’ smiles to the east or west.
Here it is cosy, the smoke from the stove
spiced with cinnamon and anise.
Secret garnets in the depths of tamarind,
the slow unfolding music of the winds,
butterfly wings in someone’s mango grove
in some weird definition of bliss.
The paddies are furred and rich, seen from above –
the world has its place. So has this.
So that’s it – you’ll sway, swing back, twang away,
the horizon just out of range.
The airplanes will keep flying overhead
to different cities with others instead.
The ships will weigh anchor and go on their way –
you’ll always be chasing change.
And you’ll wonder how many nights and days
make home and what makes a roof strange.
All your days you’ll fritter away in research
and find that numbers mean nothing.
Only the movement of road, car and coach,
the aerial view of a strange town’s approach,
the spiral of descent, the craft’s thrilling lurch,
the horizons in blues and pinks.
Only being out and away by and large
gives roofs their final meaning.
Welcome to M-i-V! - now based out of Kolkata! Hopefully, for good. I thought I'll post a bit early since I've been away for so long...and say things in...um...slightly more expansive wordcounts. It's also been the longest time since I wrote anything more than a 14 liner. In fact the last long-ish poem I wrote was in 2017 - Remembering Zeinabu.
The pandemic years have made me shrink in many ways, this is one of them. However, it's time to put that behind me and open up a bit - it's the fourth year of the Big P and my store of small p patience was never really robust. Neither is my word (limit) control. Expect longer stanzas, line counts, ramblings...thank you for reading and your time!
There's lots happening this month, both on the personal front and online. The offspring has come home for a few days and the aforesaid home looks like a disaster zone, but who cares? It's good to have the family under one roof, even if it is only for a fortnight. I hope to be back to regular posts here, also get back to my normal reading as and when I am able to straighten the house out. A few aches are certain every time you move...I'm finding many layers of meaning in that line. The bookshelves are full, even though in complete disarray, a hodgepodge of Bengali, English and genres - Emily D is next to Asimov and just looking at that is freaking me out... :) There's no way anyone can ever locate a specific book in this current mess. That's a job that needs tackling pronto but will have to wait till son flies back to uni.
Online, there's WEP, the Chocolat Challenge, I can't say enough about that deliciousness however many wordcounts you allow me... so excited! And looking forward to what people write for this one!
I hope the month has started well for you and may it continue throughout. Have an awesome August! See you soon.