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Burning by Tript Kaur

Photo by Issy Bailey


June flicked a matchstick

against a crosspatch,

the fire roared over our fields.

The stubble has been burning since.

We plunge knee deep

into water cannons

transplant paddy into PDS shops,

grow basmati more fragrant than Pakistan's,

less free than a democracy.

Policed by batons, we

de-weed our ranks of vested interests,

add fertilizer to the barren concrete

of 7 'Lok Kalyan Marg',

hope from Jantar Mantar

to view collective struggle

in constellations.

Plough through the inter-state boundaries

and cry when news of our sons dying

at the border

makes us die a little,

at a barricade.

Tear gas is not to blame.

We walk barefoot, our feet thrum

with the song of the soil.

Run through golden stalks

irrigated by our sweat,

storm the National Capital(ists)

like a Western Disturbance.

The stubble has been burning since.

A student of literature, politics and history, Tript's interests lie in children's fiction, Partition studies, and feminist readings of English, Punjabi and Urdu literature. Her work has appeared in Jabberwock, Jabberwock Online, JaggeryLit, Lucy Writers' Platform, The Bombay Review and Slaughterhouse Collective.


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