Origin Song

I am from mango trees
dusty Chennai racetracks and an old
cow shed full of snakes
From a small Georgia town, where everybody is somebody 
and we all know that snail
I am from tinkling anklets and jangling bangles 
and earrings too heavy
From Greenpeace
Hug a Pitbull and
Save the Whales
I am from god-fearing grandparents and
question-the-authority aunties
From my mommy’s thick black braid and
my daddy’s determined overbite
I am from asthma attacks and fatal peanut allergies, 
and trying to explain both to non-believers
From red clay
fire ants and
the Ku Klux Klan
I am from not-Indian-enough and 
too-brown-for-us
From your accent is funny and 
your house smells weird
I am from British occupation and
Midnight’s children
From horse ranches
wide-mouth creeks
and kudzu
I am from yes ma’am and no sir and fixin’ and y’all, 
with an Amachi and Achacha thrown in for good measure
I am from engineers
surgeons and
college presidents
From progressive thought and 
hearty debate
I am from love
and laughter
I am from anywhere and no where
and somewhere in between
a nomad soul, forever seeking
home

Being a child of the Indian diaspora, I often feel myself to be little more than a homeless soul. I am neither Indian, nor American, I am no more a daughter of the South, than I am a New York City woman. It’s confounding and lonely and at times downright disheartening, but it is also me, and my story, and here and there makes for some decent writing fodder. xx, M

4 thoughts on “Origin Song

  1. Wow, Mad! You have gone all the way with the words here. I am rolled over and amazed as I read your HOWL. It is a prize and a privilege to be with you on your writing journey. Go happy in the sun, sweet princess!!!

    • Thank so much, Daniel. You always have such kind words and mad mad support for me and my words. It never fails – I always love reading your comments. Hope all is well on your end. xx, M

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