Fiction

Commonwealth Games

Commonwealth Games

Muniamma hobbled out of her hut on a pair of crutches to study the massive billboard. The government had installed it a week ago, to hide the slum from international guests and television cameras during the Commonwealth Games. They have done well to conceal their...
For Sale

For Sale

“Mrs. Shergill?” A young couple is at the door. The husband smiles down at Simran. “I’m Tarun, and this is Rhea. We called earlier? We’ve come about the ad.” That much is obvious from the way the wife is already looking past her into the hallway. Her glance is focused...
Amma

Amma

I blinked. It was dark and wet. I blinked again. I was lying upside down and couldn’t make out anything in the dark. I stretched my legs but stopped short. Something was right in front of me. I felt safe though. A sweet voice was floating in the air. I went back to...
Lucky Sky

Lucky Sky

A cart laden with sweet, crunchy pethas is before me. I take a piece and roll it between my fingers. It feels sticky, and rough like soft stone. What magic transforms white pumpkin into this treasure? I close my eyes and take a bite—rosewater floods my mouth. Mmmmmm…...
Dhatura

Dhatura

The milky dhatura gum would siphon out my soul toward enlightenment. They said I needed it to face sorrows that could lacerate even a princess. I obeyed the sages and rolled a pea-sized ball on my tongue. Its bitter-acrid taste melted into a jasmine-scented mist,...
Koan

Koan

The Ganga is golden foam in the still morning. She allows me to forget my newly dead family now and then. The river is all outbreath; I sing along but feel breathless after a few minutes. Guru, the neo-monk, makes monkey faces at me and skips from one sun-warmed rock...