Five migrant workers (travelling home in a truck
loaded with mangoes, killed in a road accident)
This summer of the sun that is and the light that
isn’t. This summer of waiting in queues – the
line of the poor, the line of the poorly, the line
that cannot go all the way home. This summer
of mangoes, red with blood, scattered on a
highway. This summer of overturned empathy.
This summer of counting – minutes and dead
and the number of meanings for ‘distance’ – as
noun, as verb, as antonym for living. This summer
that is the Trojan horse dragged into the city centre,
silence stuffed inside its distended belly. How will
the looming monsoon ever wash this summer away?
all things kneel
before the new normal –
even us, even memories
For the millions of migrant workers making their way back to villages and towns in the hinterland, thousands on foot,walking hundreds of kilometres, as livelihoods are destroyed during the lockdown and hunger becomes a greater threat than disease.
Curfew: Day 47