Twenty Years

Twenty years. Washed away by the monsoon rain; had drifted far across the continents. But instead of being lifted into the endless skies he had landed somewhere in the rough. Even now he could picture his young self in the same blue blazer with gold buttons––one hand tucked smartly inside grey trouser pockets, sifting through the crowd at a party at the club, a glass of whisky in his right. And the women. Oh the women. He would ease the empty drinks from their hands, fill them at the bar and take a turn with them around the far end of the garden where few guests strayed. They talked about their lonely lives at home. He told them he understood.

Apple Sauce

“Did Maya have all her food this morning?” she asked.

“Mostly. She didn’t like the carrots. She spit them on the floor.”

“She always does that with carrots.”

“She doesn’t like them.”

“No. She doesn’t like them at all.”

“But you could try mixing them with apple-sauce,” she added. “She loves that”

“Apple-sauce,” he repeated, slowly. He may have been writing it down. He had a bad memory and she always made him write out lists. Once she even made him a list of all the things she wanted him to do in bed. But he looked at her with disgust and said that’s not what he was—a toy that turned on and off at her bidding.

Calcutta, The Basti, 2016