when aama doesn’t see me for an entire year
does she still remember that i am her daughter?
holding an emergency light during the power outages
she taught me respiration in a four lined notebook
and how chlorophyll helps plants to absorb energy.
i close my fluorescent eyes in the sunlight
to remind myself that i lived a life
before today. just not on this continent. there’s a country
where i watched buwa die. no grain of salt
was used for thirteen days. his flesh was washed
with ghee, honey, yogurt. scattered petals
of marigold covered his body. bloodshot eyes
of hajurama confirmed that he left
his old brown radio on the table
extending the antenna, i try to find the frequency
inside my pillowcase, i hear the sound of water
buwa will never ask me, “what is the time chhori?”
how can i explain that my soul refuses
to accept time but gita says the soul was not born.
the soul does not die either. so was it yesterday
that aama fried grated carrots to make halwa for me?
smell is not carried from one continent to another
so no it was not yesterday. i can’t tell if i am fourteen
or twenty-four. in america or nepal. with aamaa
or without chlorophyll. imagine being able to live
at one place at one time.
Mansi Dahal is a writer from Nepal earning her MFA at Columbia University. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in POETRY, Colorado Review, Palette Poetry, Cauldron and elsewhere. She graduated from Kalamazoo College with a BA in English and a concentration in Media and Film Studies. Currently, she is the editor-in-chief of Some Kind Of Opening (SKOO).