Far away, in a foreign land
On a damp, gray morning,
As I hurry towards my office
Amidst people I do not know,
Mentally tallying my balance sheet;
is this a smart enough barter –
loving friends for an unknown existence?
They stop me, and take me back home.
Those little, furry things,
flitting on the walkway –
the familiar sparrows chirp their hellos.
I had held them once
in the cup of my palms,
felt their hearts thud against my skin.
They had been my birthday present –
caught unawares by my childhood friends.
And then they land on my balcony,
On a sunny Sunday morning.
Hopping around my bottle of coconut oil
parked in the sun for a warm massage.
And I go back to my terrace
where I played hopscotch with friends
on warm winter afternoons, after school.
While my mother knitted sweaters;
sitting on a straw-mat with her friends.
Shelling peas, pickling lemons, sharing jokes…
And there!
That familiar tinkling of a bell!
Was that not the sugar candy man?
But that was then, years ago.
When I was just a little girl.
Now, there is a vendor alright
Selling unknown wares down in the street
In a language I little understand.
My daughter peeps out, squealing,
Excited to spot this man and his wares.
She´s a Metropolis girl from back home
Where no vendor now walks the streets.
My neighbor waves from the next balcony.
I wave back, and smile.
I have found my winter´s warmth
from all those years ago.
Lost in the busy heat
of traffic lights and hectic lives,
found again, in the barter of life
In this far flung, foreign land.