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Sanjeev Sethi

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Sanjeev Sethi



Purple Swamphens, LRK. Photo by Nitoo Das




LEAVE-TAKING

You & I are no scholars of horology
but time wraps in bespoke. Detritus
blocks our way, deterring us from
zooming into a xyst. We don't need
the descant of a dragoman. We know
it's clock out on a timepiece that refuses
to tictock. When fresh, we lacked the grace
to smell the flowers. Rearranging an old
bouquet is no way of revving it up.


MISHMASH

At times a confabulation gets coiled
in its ambiguities. Just then you learn
your aunt has had a stroke.

The guiles of a gypper, cons a clan.
You realize you've misplaced
keys of your Micra.

Milk will clabber on a Monday.


*GURU UNCLE

In mausoleum of my mind lives
your camaraderie with crosswords.
In a bout of boyish zeal, I bought you a book,
It still lies in my library.

Demeanor apart, part of the problem
was with your voice. Gruff. Rough.
Rather scary for a schoolboy.

Once I collected my courage,
and wished," Good night uncle."
"What's so good about the night?" You hollered.
Perhaps, it was your idea of fun,
but a six-year-old isn't equipped
to understand the intricacy of such humor.

Guru uncle, when you were alive,
I had no feelings for you.
Yet, your death has affected me,
as no one else's I've known.

*Mother's sister's husband. Retired officer of the Indian Navy. He lived alone in a South Delhi bungalow. Guru uncle was murdered one morning. The month isn't important, nor is the year. As each morning, somewhere in the world, someone's Guru uncle gets murdered.


LAYERS

She served us brunch.
Someone asked for butter.
She slathered it on my paratha.
Offered a small scoop to her son
The husband was provided a pinch.

In this I saw…
a reflection of her feelings
for me.

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