Looking back at the past
Is like shaking the coloured fragments
Of a kaleidoscope
Looking back at me.
The yellow toy-duck-on-wheels
Towing her brood of three
Waddle past my grubby infant-hands
Splash with me in my crayon-blue tub
My teether-tether orange-beaked soother.
The dark green water-hyacinth
With their delicate mauve blooms
Part – and I can see
My eight-year face rippling
In the paler green pond waters.
The sour-dark brown of tamarind
Sprinkled sharp with red chilli
Enjoyed sprawled on dappled fields
Under the benign-blue winter skies
Taste and tint rolled into a ball.
Then, the crimson-confusion of growing up
The secret pride of the red rite of passage
The even more secret ebony-agony of my skin
Wondering why “fair rules” and “dark rues”
Teenage bravado wiped away the pain.
Oh! I could paint on and on and on
They swirl and shimmer and shift
And, as I refocus my eyes
To the sharper-outlined today
Fade and blur into sepia.
(This on-the-spur post was painted for display on the canvas on Scribbit’s September Write-in Contest).