9. walking ambu-jammal

Our voices float through pockets of air,
swollen like cardamom dregs; overhead
palm fronds hammock
and catch them, tucking them in
above the whirring tailor’s shop
down the way. We walk.

Someone has begun a rangoli on my doorstep,
sands like sunset spread in our welcome.
I know it will fade by morning.

The sweeper woman flicks back her sari,
erasing our footprints as we leave them.

What will remain but the glamorous hope
that we were here, once,
and you remember?

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