Tamarind Tragedies

1 minute read   ·   19/ Tutorials for Breathing
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Our city is neon, bleeding at the edges with hope. The concrete cracks, with weeds breathing life into days, rays of sunshine all having learned how to survive a generational winter, holding out for industry to no longer be a mystery for lives that scatter the streets.

This is our land of love, where desires burn through broken fuchka into tamarind tragedies—for that curbside bite, mouth open, eyes closed and all consuming taste exists only as a momentary respite for all the hunger that‘s silted up.

“How do you love me?” She says when she lies down, mosquitoes circling her toes. “Do you remember when I first met you?” The moon blinks, playing the role of a godmother above.

There are blocks of love in my heart for her, for the city, for the fuchka and the tomorrows beyond. I compartmentalize these into a conversation in my head to get through the days.

We were 20, she bolder and freer. “The world is yours,” she encouraged me. We read Murakami, watched Wong Kar-Wai and liked the wind on our faces on vernal rickshaw rides. Rising structures on the boulevard widened our eyes for what was to come—

And then came many autumns—as sure as our brothers and sisters passed into nights—and we found our summer slumbers ending.

“Bebsha koro? Chakri nai?” A father, an aunt and a neighbour with a long nose judge my inability to be salaried. “What is this ‘business’ you do?”

The mosquitoes go away as she inhales the last bit of fuchka. “Why didn’t you take the job at Unilever?” Her heart breaks for her mother who now finds me unacceptable. What was once the future now becomes a past.

Our love of the city and for each other was never enough.