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No baab tree

by Rinku Khumukcham
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Still I remember, straight and branchy tall tree;

To those far off corner, corner of those courtyard square;

Slander as it stands, its bark so ugly and crunchy;

A homeland to chameleon variety; up and down

No naked eyes watch upon them: so quickly moved

A sucking field to bugs and moths and leaf miners;

No naked eye catches them so easily, too silently:

Green Leafy as she grows swings as she moves around;

With rhythmic gestures welcoming spring pat- pat-patter;

Oh! Its time spring her; let her wear ‘phanek’, let her bloom flowers

Let her bear ‘fruits’; she adores a piece “a piece of clothe”

She’s painted and she’s cherished, with all her full bloom.



Flowers and her petals scattered, as I swipe

Alluring and attracting and sizing their duties;

Buzzing and buzzing and never forgets Bee and bees;

Clustering and gathering; talking and helping;

Her scents sweeter as she grows decaying scattering;

Fallen echoing the breeze, one and ten and hundred;

She branched too strong, her leaves too green tight;

She’s born with bulging eyes; round and swelling and spongy;

Amongst and between the twigs interlocking, brotherly and sisterly;

Week after week, it holds hugging tight her ‘mother’;

Week after week and after month; she falls that easily,

Happy I jumped; Alas! It’s too scary; it’s bitten and sucked out;

Never the bold ripe fruit; as it falls off

Never better the juicy one; as I open it out.


As she drops one and two no- baabs, I enjoy picking up;

Carving through hunger; cutting it pieces by pieces;

And smashing and smearing; salt and sugar and chillies;

And bowl and plates; I taste better as I prepared;

Ah! Its sour, it’s deeply sour and bitter and acidic;

My tongue’s so disrespectful; bitter, moody and grumpy;

Thickening and touchy and scratchy and uneasy;

‘She bears no man’s fruit’ exclaimed my father

She’s been cut down; her arms too short

Still she stands straight single, tall and weary;

Weird as she’s been marked; her no-baabs thrown away;

Decaying and Rotten; a hand reaches it selected and chosen;

Her ‘no-baabs’ not lesser than ground ball;

A great battle to watch upon played.

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