By the road 2020

They sleep 
Along the river that is the road,
I keep watch from my third storey home in this small quiet town,
Across the soils that so many thousands must have walked
All those years in the past
Swell up
Bloodied chappals, strings sinking into the skin
Decorate my ramshackle conscience.
I walk by my five year old, into the shadow
Of the girl who cycled her peasant father back.
Bending backs, holding on,
Seeping soil, creeping by
Through my veins as I snub the cohort voices: lay low, spring is here.

Susmita Paul is the Founding Editor-in-Chief of The Pine Cone Review. She is also the Poetry and Art editor here. She is a bilingual writer who writes in English and in Bengali. Her works in English are published in Through the Looking Glass: Reflecting on Madness and Chaos Within, Poetry and COVID, Montauk and Plato’s Caves Online, amongst others. Her Bengali book of poetry is Himabaho Kotha Bole (When Glaciers Speak) (Kaurab, 2019).


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