I feel your hands on us when I wrap your sister
round me. We do not let our children wander now. Our hearts are not so strong. Lines have been drawn
on my once-upon-a-time wanton body
waiting for your father to unwrap me like a sari –
the night birds and cicadas thrilling to our moans
as he arched my hips and pulled me onto him
ripe as a pomegranate – until we fell away.
When it came – I was alone in the house and you –
far from me – playing. Swept out – branches
caught my hair – prison bars across my eyes –
forcing me to watch the water’s furious birth –
her lips torn by blades of ships and roofs.
Only the naked on treetops were saved my love.
Mariamman is the Tamil earth goddess.
I feel they have their hands on me, said Kumari of the daughters she lost in the 2004 Tsunami in Tamil Nadu, The Guardian, Indian Ocean tsunami: the parents rebuilding their families, 19.7.2013.
The Tamil name for pomegranate, maadulampazham – from maadhu (woman) and ullam (mind) – is a metaphor for a woman's mind, which means, as the seeds are hidden, it is not easy to decipher a woman's mind.
Emma Hellyer is a writer/poet living in France, currently writing a poetry collection which turns around questions of kindness, kinship, belonging and exile, from the perspective of a British migrant. She worked for 23 years at the Council of Europe in Strasbourg, running the [...]
Necessary cookies are absolutely essential for the website to function properly. This category only includes cookies that ensures basic functionalities and security features of the website. These cookies do not store any personal information.
Any cookies that may not be particularly necessary for the website to function and is used specifically to collect user personal data via analytics, ads, other embedded contents are termed as non-necessary cookies. It is mandatory to procure user consent prior to running these cookies on your website.