Where is Home?

By Pankhuri Sinha

PROMPT — Who am I today?

Where do we wish to get to

And what are we running away from?

Are these also places?

And does it also mean

That one W here

Can be easily, effortlessly replaced by

Another W, what becomes where?

Where amounts to what?

People turn into objects

Or maybe, old fashioned subjects

Citizens of no where

No man’s land, while dreaming

Of world citizenship

And this reduction

Gets somewhat carried

Along all the routes of migration

Up until one destination to another

Getting fixed in that infamous question

‘So where are you from?’

Or that question, asked somewhat more pejoratively

‘So where is home?’


And why do we not belong?

To it and to other places and to things?


Well, originally from here

And basically, from there!

Calling this place my home now

But I left my roots behind, yet,

Can't go back! Its impossible!


Camping these days

In my native place

But I feel like

Am living someone else’s

Life! If that’s a line

From a popular song

At least, not feeling like

Myself should express

Convey! My state of mind

In my state of birth

Surrounded always

With calls of fitting in!


Time hangs suspended

Looking for balance

With molds of thinking

Frames of being

Paradigms of existence

Is it a borrowed identity

From my own old self

Feeling misfit like second skin

Dangling loosely

Or is it a second life altogether?

And is there a second chance

Somewhere around

And this is not it? Not at all?


To travel back in time

Place wise, deed wise?

But have we moved forward dramatically?

And have witnessed our rebirths?

In alien spaces, clamoring for our voices?

Perfecting our dictions

In equality negotiations?


One we could never have had

Back home? And now that we are here

In our native surroundings

Are we stagnating? Like rain water?

And should we drain ourselves in a cup of tea

And sprinkle with lemon

And garnish with mint

To energize and re-invent ?


Do we need to leave again to blossom?

But why is this transit so long?

Why weren’t we settled

In our earlier departures?

What is the confrontation

With dualities of lives?

And what constructs

The compulsory bifurcation

In binaries of operation?


Isn't there any place nice

Close by? Whom should we ask

And how should we ask?

Are we among the unfortunate

Banished from the garden of Eden

or among the chosen who will be called again?

Is visiting a burden?

Wanting complications?

Simple desires of broad views

A curse? Can we make it into a boon?


And should we be waiting

In a somewhat more visible

Locale, to be not missed?

To be picked up?

By forces unknown

Yet, coveted?

Why can’t we simply belong?

Or do we honestly

Belong to that pull

Of the beyond?

And, do we never really leave

Even after we have left?

 

Pankhuri Sinha is a bilingual Indian poet and writer. She has published ten collections and has many more lined up. Her writing has been published in many journals, anthologies, home, and abroad. Pankhuri has won many prestigious, national and international awards. Her work has been translated into twenty six languages. Pankhuri writes from New Delhi.