On Mother’s Day 2016

Here’s to those who choose to and do not choose to become mothers
to those who are trying to or trying not to
to those who can and those who can’t
or who still wonder whether to
to those who know they don’t want to
to those who are but didn’t choose to be
to those who are but didn’t expect to be
to those who are and wanted to be
to those who are.
Here’s to the women who are people too
and would like not to be defined by being a mother
or not being one
Here’s to the people and institutions and legislations and communities supporting whatever choice is made.
Here’s to the people who have to make that choice.

On reading the news

The town crier announces

tallest Buddhas in the world
and villages named after president-Kings
landmarking an island


drowning out


quiet pleas for peace of mind
at home, and a landscape
whose pride we all might share in.


Church bells

She runs down the cobblestone street, hand reaching blindly forward, the other clutching the copious tulle of her gown. Blackened tears streak her face, joining freckle-dots as they flow towards the corner of her reddened lips. Daisies and yellow dahlias line the streets, her hand grazing the stone wall and she runs.

That is how you picture her when she ran away from you. Like you want her to be hurt the way it hurt you.

There are church bells in your memory, from some long-ago. You were there once, almost.

 

(from an experimental exercise with Jason Beckman)

Playing with majoritarian fire

A friend of mine in the US mentioned that Trump standing for elections and being extremist is some tactical political manoeuvre for very different aims (than getting DT elected). Whatever the motive is, it is truly terrifying to see the US using the same shameful tactics used in Sri Lankan politics where majority prejudices are toyed with for political gain. Whatever comes out of this, no foresight from the US players can control the beast they’ve unleashed on their society.

Let Them Stay

It’s 1965
and Nancy Prasad is to be deported.
So Charlie Perkins hides her, holds her
hostage, demands the government
pay the ransom of her safety


It’s 2016
and Baby Asha’s turn has come.
So 200 people hide her, hold her
hostage, demand the government
pay the ransom of her safety


The girl-child sits, as strangers pass above her,
debating the course of her life.