The air is heavy with the scent of crushed grass and last night’s rain. Driving through one of the few straight stretches on the ghats of Sahyadri, I glance at my watch. It is nine-thirty in the morning, almost an hour has passed since the last bustle of the maximum city. The throbbing roar of the engine feels like a just-hatched dragon between my thighs.
The twisting road embraces a scraggy rock face, forcing me to breathe-in the present. The road, though now in a state of disrepair, is still serviceable.
the road snakes into
I remember this road from the times I was dating my wife. The expressway was yet to be built and every weekend, a six hour journeyon this two lane highway, would mean meeting her. Sometimes just after the rains, we would drive down to a small hill called tiger’s leap and spend hours talking in the bleeding glow of the setting sun. The journey had never seemed long or tiring then.
a thin mist takes over
I take the next exit, parking by the side of a small lake to stretch my back and legs.The lake is shallow, it may have filled up in the gentle rain of last two nights. A pair of lapwings walk its muddy banks. The yellow in their throat and beak stand out against the washed out landscape. I have never noticed the pattern or colour of a lapwing before. But then I have never stopped mid-highway weighed down with a sore back either.
I guess one has to be old enough for both…
the dull throb
of your absence
waxing … waning