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A place of quiet objects by Satwik Mishra

Art by Michelle Hendry

My tiny home is a place of quiet objects. The newspapers lay scattered lazily on the old creaking sofa, and a mug of coffee waits quietly on the table, gradually surrendering its warmth. Mother’s half knit sweater, barely enough to cover oneself from the winter that shows up life after life, like an aged man endowed with immortality. And a beach ball that rolls a little to the corner to catch some light, before being jolted back under the pleasant sun. Father’s umbrella, bowed against the shoe-rack, frayed, roughly as grey as him, waiting continually for the song of rain, and the chirping of crickets.

My tiny home is a shelter to unnamed memories, such as the faint echoes of multiplication tables gone awry, and the painful recital of unusually hard spellings, the stammering, whilst the toddlers play hide and seek on balmy afternoons. The tiny tongues tasting summer in jars of pickles, the crates of mangoes, and juicy plums. The blaring of the radio, the spasmodic noises of the old scooter in the yard resisting the gradual decay. Muffled voices of father chanting the old verses, the whistle going off in the kitchen, mother crooning an old song from her memory in the hope of resuscitating it.

My tiny home is a shelter to ghosts of all things that retreated. They snare at me in the hideous moments of midnight, tiptoeing by the bedside, perchance waiting for me to sleep. And years later, before I retire to an endless slumber, I shall leave the door ajar, so that those who wander in search of a home are greeted with the warmth of all that I’ve left behind.

Satwik's work can be found on his website and Instagram.

Read his poemsShoot Them All here and The Art of Drowning here.


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