(First appeared in Poeticdiversity)
In memory of my beloved sister
Everything is still the same
as you left, just with minor changes.
Like this chocolate-brown colored wooden door
that you would ask me to shut
when engrossed in watching TV,
it had stopped getting shut. Lost its shine.
It’s now all repaired and polished.
Like this bed you used to sleep on, the one
on which we spent countless hours
whispering and giggling at night.
This bed is now heavy
with the weight of your absence.
Its mattress had stopped providing support
for my orphaned back.
The bed is still the same but the old mattress
has now been replaced with the new firmer one.
Like this little red-colored bed side alarm clock
that had stopped ticking
when you left; refusing
to make the familiar tick-tock sound.
It’s now all repaired, it ticks
but just ever so slowly…
You never asked
Between the yearly
anniversary congratulatory calls, and
the usual everyday talks,
for years this daughter
has longed to hear
those three words: Are you happy?
Waiting, someone would ask;
hoping, someone would care;
but people have long assumed
she is happy, until
the time she would finally
take the plunge, leaving
everything behind, would bid
her final goodbye, out of nowhere then,
in no time, hordes of people would show up
with concern in their eyes, would ask
with a heavy sigh:
Was she not happy enough?
Prerna Bakshi is a writer, poet and activist of Indian origin, currently based in Macao. She is the author of the recently released full-length poetry collection, Burnt Rotis, With Love, long-listed for the 2015 Erbacce-Press Poetry Award in the UK, which is available to order here. Her work has been published widely, most recently in The Ofi Press Magazine, Red Wedge Magazine, Off the Coast, TRIVIA: Voices of Feminism and Peril magazine: Asian-Australian Arts & Culture, as well as anthologized in several collections. Find out more about her and her work at http://prernabakshi.strikingly.com/
*Featured image courtesy of the brilliant C.C. O’Hanlon*