By Nishi Pulugurtha
Anu and Moyna
She was a little bundle, a bit shy, sitting happily in her mother’s lap
She took a while to smile, the little one with her ringlets crowning
The next time I saw her, she was hiding behind a cot
Too many new faces all around, at my bidding she looked up
After a while she was out in the open, munching on a lozenge
It was time to be fed and mother and child were sitting up
From the distance I could see the mother talking to the little one
As she ate, she slid down the slip, unafraid – sheer delight on her face
All of two years, just could say a few words – Ma and Didi
The father committed suicide two months ago, Moyna said
Anu was happy sliding down.
Twenty-two, two children, a boy of five and a little baby girl
Three other faces at home – or was it one?
He drank and drank till it drove him to an end
Two months ago, it all ended, or did it?
Today, Moyna has got some work
More children all around – the boy there too.
The girls still tugging at her sari as she goes on with her work
She goes on with her work at times with the child in her arms
Small whisperings, a smile, as she goes on.
Dr. Nishi Pulugurtha is Associate Professor, Department of English, Brahmananda Keshab Chandra College, Kolkata. She is an academic with varied interests and writes on travel, too. Twitter: @nishipulu
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