Wisps

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June 20, 2021 by The Citron Review

by Suchita Hariharan

 

Remember: curling up next to your grandmother
on humid summer nights
eyes fixed on the whirring ceiling fan,
enthralled by tales of Hindu folklore.

reciting prayers with your family before bed,
eyes squeezed shut in focus,
the scene more familiar than a bedtime story.

the photo where you posed proudly
wearing a fiery salwar kameez, gold jimiki earrings
and a luminous smile,
circled by wreaths of fairy lights.

Know: the resignation in your mom’s eyes
when you call her “Mom” instead of “Amma”.

a family friend persuading you to try and speak in Tamil,
before teasing you about your accent
while your cheeks flushed, feigning a laugh.

the enchantment of a temple fading,
from weekly visits to monthly annoyances.

Imagine: memories lasted longer
a wish carried by the wisps of smoke
lit by a ceremonial fire.

 

Suchita Hariharan is a 16-year-old high school student from India currently living in Singapore. While her other interests include psychology, reading, and piano, writing has always been her favorite pastime and she hopes to continue pursuing this passion in college. She has been previously published in Fray and Mend, a creative nonfiction and poetry anthology.

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