Supurna Dasgupta‘s two poems: Diaspora in Bollywood and Jar-ring during Quarantine

Diaspora and Bollywood: a culinary parody

April is the cruelest month,
 Cutting dead fish on steel-blades
 Mixing mustard with desire.
 As the yellow spread like a drop of color in my pan,
 Mustard blossomed, from Yash Chopra fields
 With Simran running to Raj now,
 and now, running to Raj who morphs
 into an Arjun whose mother waits and waits.
And now it is my mother who waits
 to hear…
 if mustard could indeed mix with desire.


Jar-ring during Quarantine

Noises that usually jar

At any eardrum, are now

Gone. And have settled into 

Jams and preserves with colors like dawn;

Into spreads, curries, and butter—beige, brown and fawn-

and ere they mutter

Any sound, they muffle their music 

Inside the freezer’s hum,

Trailing on the walls of many a sticky jar.

And despite this silence of safe solitude,

we cannot leave our doors even a bit ajar.

Supurna Dasgupta is a PhD scholar at the University of Chicago in the department of South Asian Languages and Civilisations. In her spare time, she translates, embroiders, makes wishful travel plans, and teaches imaginary courses.

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