Travelers Welcome

Travelers Welcome

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

My Mother’s Birthplace

by Amit Parmessur

is where I’ve learnt the contours of Bhojpuri
from the lips of the old people spending their
day bowing to the soil and their crops.

O Crève Coeur, I have run with my brother
in your beautiful ginger fields.
Your ginger smell still haunts my fingers.

From grandma’s house, we have flown
a kite that could tickle your mountain trees.

I have laughed at the old man
who swims naked in your river, with
a couple of naughty cousins stealing his
funny clothes away while he is in the water

which flows proudly along
redolences of bananas.

I have played in cow dung and performed
long jump in your soft, reddish brown soil.
I have scored goals on your football
ground and won the
rural trophies of sincere friendship.

The scissors of my mind still cut
through your rustling sugar cane leaves to meet
the places where my once nimble feet
would play hide-and-seek with the
village boys, until the time of solemn stars.

I have also disobeyed and slipped into
the stable to caress the beard of an old goat.
I have gamboled with naked neck hens

and chased the domineering roosters, dropping
my heart in the heart of your heart
in the process.
O Crève Coeur you
are the adorable place I really come from.

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