They’ve stuck nails into her on all four dimensions. The kind that makes you go back to your childhood and replay the same feeling as being knocked out after seeing a barge of colors through a broken mirror. Or the rainbow & the pain of cutting grass after rain. That’s what the world does best—makes you a metaphor. But you ask why you suffer. Your brown skin latches onto the verandah wood. The skies burst open & wash all blood eventually—year after year after year. It was all there in your history & mythology textbooks—when Ram left with Sita for vanvas & kept her solitary, or when your next door neighbor was murdered for being brown in a white town. A century on, they still try to teach you where to draw the line—no apples, no transcendence. So you sit by the windowpane & ask why the sky has been gray. You don’t realize you have begun to resist. Sometimes, a fluttering in your heart, a gentle nudge to become a blackbird & sing. They have taken so much from the world & now they want to take some more from you, too. But you have learnt that trick, of giving most & hiding some for yourself within pleats of your saree, to say that the night is thick and dark and upon us, go to sleep. You go back to the windowpane & look at constellations through city lights that shimmer like galaxies tremble in the cold space between matter & universe. The voyage to elsewhere.
Sneha Subramanian Kanta is a GREAT scholarship awardee, and has earned a second postgraduate degree in literature from England. Her work has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize. She is the founding editor of Parentheses Journal. Her chapbook Synecdoche is forthcoming with The Poetry Annals (Oxford, England).