Across a table

Conversations flow

Stories of a bygone era

When apples could be got

For rupees 2 a piece


The tired faces relax

The wrinkled mouths smile

For a time of oiled plaits

Home-made kajal, bicyles and chulhas

For a time of silk half-sarees


There are stories


Of girl talk, little-girl beliefs

Playing amidst goats and cows

Scrapes on the knees, water brought in from hand pumps


There are tales that unfold

Moments retold, of newly wedded bliss

Hotel rooms, discoveries and grief

Of attempts to find sambar bowls

In a land of dal and chawal


Fond remembrances

Bring forth embarrassed giggles

Fights, misunderstandings, and the making up

Tales of moments, stolen

On the porch


A trip to the Taj Mahal is spoken of

And buying scarves at Delhiโ€™s famed bazaars

Stories of khandvi and pulao and roti

Tried and failed and mastered

And of struggles and acceptance


There are tales of swollen bellies


Horrifying pains

Of the joy, unfettered,

The feeling of holding a wee oneโ€™s hand


Long-forgotten tales

Of girl-seeing

Silks and silver and gold chains

The joy and pain of marrying off

A darling son




Moments, long-lost


Chilled spines, warmed



Filed under My poems

8 responses to “Bygones

  1. Beautiful..chilling elements interspersed with nostalgic warmth. Looking back at life can be a surreal experience..


  2. I must agree with your other commenters, Kalyan and Sathej. Very lovely and heart-felt poem.

  3. Anu

    I read and then re-read them almost 5-6 times to relish it again and again Priya!! Awesome writing!!

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