Visiting Indira Gandhi's Palmist: An Excerpt
Love begins in a country
Where orangesweep sweetness
And men piss in the street.
Your hands are forever binding
Black strands in a plait. Your mother’s
Childhood friend hassteeped
Your skin in coconut oil, tucked
Her daughter beside you—the night
Is a womb, live with twins.
Heat’s body pressesevery body.
Sharp chop of your uncle’s cough
Clocks the hours; your sister’s washing,
The rush of your thoughts. Morning
Is nine glass bangles hoisting sacks
Of sugar from the floor. I’m not talking
About a place, but a country:
Its laws are your mother, its walls
Are your dreams. The flag it flies
Is your father waving.