Representations of Home Creative Journal

ROAM - Spring/Summer 2021 - ROAM 1

Jonaki Ray

“Homes Locked Away”

The tilt of her head parallels

the moustache of the hero,

who always defeats the villains,

in the poster that she’s standing in front of.

Hair matted like the twigs gathered

by pigeons attempting a home within stolen spaces

crowns her as she counterbalances

the patched bag slinging her shoulder.

Behind her, cars honk and swerve, angry mosquitoes scattered

by an unseen hand. Her shirt seems to tatter as she continues

to stare at the woman backgrounding the movie poster,

until the guard tells her to leave. “Where will I go?

I lost my living when everything was locked down.

I used to clean homes and live in a room that

is now taken back by my landlord!” she cries.

The guard, originally from the opposite side of the country,

shakes his head; he doesn’t speak the same language as her,

though they are fellow citizens. If he could, he would tell

the woman about his lost land, sold to a new-age guru,

which made him leave his home and his wife and his son

and look for a new job when the old guards walked home after the lockdown.

But … he has learnt that some losses cannot be measured by words.

So, he says nothing. Instead, he gives her some water, and waves her on.

She limps forward, on a road lined by placards

and the flags of a politician proclaiming,

“The way to be happy and attain one’s desires is to believe.”

< Back
This site uses cookies from Google to deliver its services and to analyze traffic. Your IP address and user-agent are shared with Google along with performance and security metrics to ensure quality of service, generate usage statistics, and to detect and address abuse.