Kids Corner


A Love Poem After The Genocide





The shawl of 1984

is my skin, your skin

So many pores

I would like to rinse

them all


It is very light

the shawl of 1984. Simply

the weight of sixty-million

moist eyelids. The fabric

carries ‘nothingness’

of yellow mustard

fields— vaporized by four-star

generals. It carries a trace of June, when

heat melted cotton and eyes of flying  

birds into black-milk. The shawl glitters

with crystals of ashes, raining down still

pretending to be November

Listen, sweet one, the dead may never return

And no one shall claim

the shoes left behind, waiting 

near Rajni’s dukhbhanjini. Where you see

the tree of healing, all I see is wreckage

of narrative. A double loss

Our stories, too, were reduced to rubble

And the world listens to the triumphant

perpetrator, who tells the Story

Still, I cannot explain the widening echoes —

Why a near-infinite ardaas

resides in some remote corner of your heart?

Strange web-light

calms and comforts

the wounded pores there

What I love about you (yes, love

still possible

after 84) is the way 

you woof

and warp the thread. The way your hands

continue to weave

for the dead. The way you weave

for the little boy with a white knot, For the girl

with two reddened braids

The way you bind taanaa

and taanee and again

and again out of the ruins Harmandar rises

And out of noisy silence

an overdue voice, From now on

No single story

Sweet one, you give me permission, You

hand us all

spinning wheels, portable looms, a set of full

phulkari. And patiently we begin


re-claiming the gentle flames of our lives

From now on, we will tell

our stories


*   *   *   *   *

Jaspreet Singh is a novelist, essayist and a short story writer. His latest novel Helium has been called a ‘profound meditation on historical forgetting’.

June 14, 2015

Conversation about this article

1: Ajit Singh Batra (Pennsville, New Jersey, USA), June 14, 2015, 9:39 PM.

With the help of God, we will convey our stories ourselves, assuring that all that comes from our skins is clean and not exaggerated. God is the Tablet, the Pen and the Writer. The world keeps on coming and going but The One is ever new and fresh. [GGS:968] - 'Aapay patee kalam ... navaa niroaa'

Comment on "A Love Poem After The Genocide"

To help us distinguish between comments submitted by individuals and those automatically entered by software robots, please complete the following.

Please note: your email address will not be shown on the site, this is for contact and follow-up purposes only. All information will be handled in accordance with our Privacy Policy. Sikhchic reserves the right to edit or remove content at any time.