Poem | Akhil Katyal

Wrapped in paisley by Anannya Dasgupta*

When Farida Khanum

sings now

she does not hide the age
in her voice,

she wraps it in paisleys,
and for a moment
holds it in both of her hands,

she drowns it in our sky.

When she sings now,
she knows

that at the end of that note
when her voice breaks
like a wishbone,

he will stay.

* Notes from the photographer : "Wrapped in Paisley" is a composite image of a photograph of Lucknow's chikan work layered on to a photograph of the much scribbled walls of the Residency.

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