I am knitting blue wings into my dress
Sewing sparrows in my sleeves
Azadi is the name of my unborn daughter
and perfume of love in my poem’s dress
If I fail to tell my stories of struggle
I will lose myself
- Afghan poet PARI
On the first month of the New Year, I share these lines with the hope that the coming year will not carry scars of violence, savagery and cruelty that 2015 has witnessed. The largest number of displaced peoples in a century, the worst heat and floods in a century, rising fear and hate mongering … 2015 is best behind us.
My own New Year has been marked by the ritual visit to my favorite Chennai temple - Parthasarathy Kovil in Triplicane. As I waited in the long lines at 4 am, the memories of how the entire community bonded during the flood crisis returned. Muslims, Hindus and Christians took refuge inside the temple, and in the aftermath of the chaotic disaster, the Muslim community in Triplicane helped clean the temple before the auspicious month of Margazhi began on December 16th.
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