Thursday 5 October 2017


The women of my house 
Breathe with their hands.
Tongues bitten by their own teeth beat a hasty retreat,
Eyelids securely tie stormy words within the eyes.
All’s silent but you know that they live 
By the beating of their hands:
Folding clothes, moving furniture 
Stoking the fire, breaking coconuts.
They had been trained to fall in line 
With the lines on their palms,
Conduct literature they couldn’t unlearn,
But they did what they could
And got calluses of their own making,
Lines they had earned, lines they now fiercely own.

First published in Radius, 30 Sep 2017. 


probe said...

.. lines they now fiercely own..

Beautifully done!

ankita said...


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