By Prerna Bakshi
Visiting Kolkata after 15 years
Old Victorian buildings.
Goddess Durga’s pamphlets plastered on the walls.
Mosaics and murals all around.
Everything looks the same
since I last visited.
Including the hammer and sickle
graffiti on the walls – faded or
turned brighter red instead…
Sitting under the shade of a
Mahua tree, I wonder if
it has ever tasted its own produce – alcohol.
I wonder if it even knows
it produces alcohol.
It continues to have an identity
independent of its own produce,
independent of what it produces,
unlike the fate of us women.
Prerna Bakshi is a sociolinguist, research scholar, writer and translator from Sydney, currently based in Macao. Her work has previously been published in over two dozen journals and magazines, most recently in Grey Sparrow Journal, Silver Birch Press, Wilderness House Literary Review, Kabul Press, Misfit Magazine and Peril magazine: Asian-Australian Arts & Culture. Her full-length poetry collection, Burnt Rotis, With Love, is forthcoming from Les Éditions du Zaporogue. She tweets at @bprerna.
Cafe Dissensus Everyday is the blog of Cafe Dissensus magazine, based in New York City, USA. All materials on the site are protected under Creative Commons License.
Read the latest issues of Cafe Dissensus Magazine on ‘Disability: Art and Culture’, edited by Shilpaa Anand, MANUU, Hyderabad & Nandini Ghosh, IDS Kolkata.