Friday, June 18, 2010

An unmarried girl at 39

Unmoving she sits,
Like a truck in a traffic jam
On the highway,
Inside a cocoon of silence
That like a light bulb would explode,
If she allows the varied noises
From the street below
And the house around her,
To invade her stillness.
Her joints ache
Like the rusted nuts and bolts
Of the chair she sits on
By the window sill,
The setting sun in her eyes,
Her eyes liquid gold.

The fan whirring on her head,
Spreads a thin film of sweat
On her features fine still,
Her skin though
Is pinched now,
Like an orange left in the fridge
For a day too long.
Fine lines build bridges
Across her brow,
Like cobwebs that appear
On the walls of a house,
Left empty and locked.
Siver strands in her hair,
No longer a rarity,
Her breasts beginning to droop,
Like flowers withered
After the passage of spring,
Her voice like brittle twigs
Spluttering in a fire,
A void in her eyes,
Her eyes liquid gold.

Horns honk below,
Children shout,
Shopkeepers haggle,
Women quarrel,
Boys whistle in the corner
At girls passing by,
Two men in a fist fight
Trace each other's ancestry,
Life goes on as usual.
While oblivious she sits,
Unwatching, unhearing,
Her mind crammed
With the shadows on her father's face,
Accusing stares of her sister,
Her mother's helpnessness.
Like a pearl in an oyster,
A pearly drop in her eyes,
Her eyes liquid gold.

Perhaps she thinks of younger days,
And aches for the acne on her face,
Evenings when on a swing
Her feet touched the sky,
Maybe of someone
Who taught her all the ways to dream,
And also their futility
In a sand coloured world.
She knows now,
That hope has a life span,
And things that die
Are dead for ever.

As the night spreads her shroud,
She gets up with a sigh,
A wistful half smile on her lips.
She will be forty in another year,
She has dinner to cook,
Rememberances are luxuries
She can ill afford.
So with a deep breath she rises,
To face the lonely night.
The promise of love
A fading mirage in her eyes,
Her eyes liquid gold.

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