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The Sardines and the Sea – Reminders of a Tsunami

Kanyakumari The sardines – I fried them up today.

They had been occupying freezer space for a while.

From the huge one in the Indian grocery store to the smaller one at home.

They carried with them the scent of the sea.

The heady, salty whiff that carried me back home.

Well, home or close to home.

They smelt like the sea.

The salty, slightly repugnant air of the sea.

The air along my ravaged coasts.

The beaches that bore a haunted look

After the sea came in to swallow her children,

And left behind an ocean of tears.

A terrifying, hollow empty sea

Of desolation and devastation.

Emotions till then unassociated with home, or my beaches.

White tales of horror, the unending sorrow of the dead living.

Waiting buses that no one came back to.

Newly sprung hills they called graves.

And the phantom cries of the children

Disrupting the roar of silence.


4 responses »

  1. Remi some aches never leave likenthe seasons they go over and over and the sea will roll on as it has fir thousands of years


  2. you are wrong jose, it is not possessiveness, but rather a sense of belonging. and i don’t think that is wrong. when u love a place u feel u belong to it. it is rather the other way round of what u said. actually the ravaged coast possesses me. so i am not building walls, but rather identifying myself with that soil. if u can identify yourself as a kuttanadan, why can’t i identify myself with my place?

    as for the question of bonsai being cruel. i think i have already answered that question.


  3. …forget sardines…does the art of bonsai amount to cruelty to plants….imagine that ancient chinese fetish for small feet?…and subjecting female feet to rigorous imprisonment to quench male imagined pinnacles of beauty…just one crazy guy thinking aloud…”my ravaged coast”…how possesive can folks be? the history of human civilization is all about building fences and appropriating whats everybody’s and calling it one’s own…like “dasettan” calling all those songs.. his…if at all it belongs to any single human belongs to vayalar….sardine…chala…whatever you call it…to a kuttanadan…a mathi is a mathi is a mathi…take care.



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