Indian Summers

By Sajesh Vijayan 
@thelitexpression
2006 AD
O brother, witness the doldrums of the summer skies,
Murdering trees where they stand overnight,
Shaking mangoes to fall and get crushed to pulp within their dark green skin of my childhood.
My knee is still scarred from the mossy rock where I fell in May. Near the mango tree.
There is a vast banyan growing from within me in 2006 AD.
The branches extend to decades beyond, seeking out rich swamps to reach and grab hold of. 
That was the last summer
Where I had mangoes from home.
I wonder, is the mango tree still there?
Do the mangoes still drip honey and make children dream?
2014 AD
The leaves pulsed in the summer sun
Stuck to a reluctantly blue sky, hazed 
In grey, and these clouds will not rain today.
The fruits hang shyly, listening to the
Incessant assault of crows and bulbuls.
And in that oppressive heat, with an infinite patience I wait for my verdant gaze to blush, as the fruits will turn heavy and fall into my waiting hands.
They neither reddened nor fell, as it was not a variety that should be eaten ripe. Someone offered me the sour pieces dipped in salt and chilli. I ate one, pretended relish and refrained in future from such company.
The banyan tree has been chopped off at odd places. Nobody knows the honest woodcutter whose axe fell my limbs. I know who did it, but I cannot name a face. It's too familiar, like ones I see in the mirror.
2017 AD
Far from home, I sat on a dark country road.
No streetlights, no traffic.
The constellations were still in transit.
My stomach spasmed as her fingers
Sought to unravel me.
There were more mangoes than the universe could hold. I was to eat them all.
She fed them to me.
She took a moonbeam of a knife
And carved runes inside of my lips.
Spells that bind my dreams for life.
Or at least until the mango trees die.
While she fed me,
Her red-slicked fingers slid over
The bleeding moon and let me
Taste the blood of dreams dreamt
In parked cars at midnight, hiding
Whispered kisses.
While I hungered for her fingers on my lips,
I realised that I'd let go of a return.
The banyan tree sought out a tomorrow.
2019 AD
I am summer-born. And my veins are shaped
After the vicious lightning bolts.
And my blood carries the dust of
Rocks being cleaved by lightning and falling into seas, shattering into an incoherent pile of rubble. 
Like Kashmir. Where children are broken in camps (no I haven't been there) and shattered inside their homes (literally, I've heard. But no, I haven't been there).
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This poem won in Instagram Weekly Contest held by @delhipoetryslam on the theme 'Indian Summer' 

1 comment

  • MAGNIFICENT

    PRAMOD KUMAR MISHRA

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