Amma, You and Us

The day after Amma left. Sometime past midnight. Knowing that in the morning we are to carry her away. Did I write this then, or a few days after, I can’t say. It seemed a whole world kept washing away in my tears, draining with it the reason to be rational. Now I am all water, inside and outside, already ready to vanish into the elements, if fortune smiles.  

Close your eyes, now the peace is here
In a few hours I will take you in my arms

This red-and-green checks pattu cheera
Rustling, cold against my cheeks,
Warm in my fingers,
Soft and comforting on my face
Just as it was, when I didn’t let your knees go

Tomorrow we will sing Uyal Ghoshti,
Bhagavatam, Divya Prabandham for you
Yes, yes Yajurvedochharanam too,

They are all saying that
You were just like sleeping,
That your moham-kala
Is as bright as ever

Someone outside is saying
Only aavu-neyyi is shreshtam.
Vijayakka stressed gently
That by 5 am we all should be up

Peddamma is singing an appagintala paata
That once made your eyes damp
But when nanna said something
To your eyes
Still you had laughed. Uncontrollably.
With your whole body shaking

Amma…! I am still here!
Laughing at your words,
At your imitations
At your swaying hands
And purposely making you self-conscious
When you were angry,
To make you laugh again

Now we sleep, eager to open our eyes to you
Craving to be woken into the
Morning of your love

Raj Karamchedu