Poetry: Supatra Sen

Supatra Sen
My Other Half

Do I know you?
Asked the worn-out figure
You should… 
The terse reply
Of the young curly head
You look familiar
Yet I seem to have forgotten… 
Maybe an old acquaintance

Yes… an old acquaintance
The oldest 
Whom you buried 
With time
A tragic end
Slow poisoning
Of neglect and suppression
Unending tasks
Of always explaining your stand
Of never having been left with any choice… 

Horrendous… 
And you say
I did it!!
Of course… without a thought
There were warnings too… 
Ailments… disease… 
You asked for help… from others
 Friends, advisors… physicians
I was subdued 
The answers were within
All the time… always

And now what? 
You return to avenge
Haven’t you seen enough
I’ve been waiting
Across space and time
To be reunited
With you
My part… my Being

The old cleaned the mirror
Of its dust and dime
Two figures in striking contrast
Reflection? Illusion?
Or mere hallucination… 
Two pairs of eyes meet
The same trust
The same dreams
Sixty years apart… 
***


Daughter of the House

The only sister 
Of five brothers
The only girl child 
Of that generation
Protected and cosseted
Treated as a queen
Against societal norms
Education and elegance
A lethal combination
But that too 
Without any qualm

A saree a day
Teachers for music and culinary skills
The sitar… and the piano
Baking… also grinding
In precise blend
Everything nearly everything
For that ideal life

Marriage by choice
Not by compulsion
The life companion 
Self-selected
A fire-brand lady
Obedient… within limits
Beautiful… not petite
Built small but standing tall
Complete… with flaws

And then Time’s vicious bends
A single mother
Merely 36 then… 
No complaints
No regrets
She –
The lone tigress
Dangerous to mess with
Fiercely protecting her cubs
Broken… yet towering

Three decades
And unending battles
Health the price
Stability the recompense
The Sons  
Men of worth
The Grandson 
Loving and protective
So much like her long departed brothers
And ever-doting father
The cycle now nearly complete

Almost the last page
Of her story… 
Duties done
Time to move on
Bid the final adieu
To blend with the Almighty

A cold misty day in January
Another new bride had arrived
A silent welcome
Her battered and bruised body
A tale of syringes and drips
But the baton had been handed over
She had seen it all
Peace… 
At last

As the mourners silently
Filed out 
Heads bowed
The scarlet Rudra-palash 
Adorned her path
In magnificent splendor
Fallen
Yet untrampled… 
***

10 comments :

  1. Nothing to add comment, but to feel and fill. So emotional, ignition of personal hidden treasure.

    ReplyDelete
  2. You have always been a towering figure, Ma'am...an inspiration for all generation of students..I still remember your words when you told a broken me (because that time I used to work as a part-time teacher in school having no permanent post),"No work is small!"

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  3. My other half reminds me of the ending of Umrao Jaan, the 1981 film...cinematically speaking, the mood so beautifully captured!

    ReplyDelete

  4. Marriage by choice
    Not by compulsion
    The life companion
    Self-selected
    A fire-brand lady
    Obedient… within limits
    Beautiful… not petite
    Built small but standing tall
    Complete… with flaws

    And then Time’s vicious bends
    A single mother

    Suparta ji
    As a reader the words take me to the horizon where a beautiful view created is reflected
    With different perspectives
    Congrats

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you ever so much ! Deeply touched...

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    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
  5. Thank you ever so much ! Remain ever indebted...

    ReplyDelete

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