In winter, I dream of an endless summer… when I dream of summer, I dream of an Indian summer…
(Painting of a mango tree by my son)
Ah the taste of summer!
The succulence of mangoes
The sweetness playing on the tongue
As it tries to replace
The sandy grittiness of the “loo”
Watermelons bland (and sweet)
The earthy taste of water
Kept cool in earthenware..
Ah the touch of summer!
Surfaces that scorch the skin
Drying chillies in the sun
Handprints made on dusty furniture
(Dust left by the scorching “loo”)
Dripping beads of sweat
The palpable relief of a splash of water
Ah the smells of summer!
Sweet mangoes, mint, “khus”
The intoxication of jasmine at night
The earthen scent of first rain of the season..
Ah the sights of summer!
Buffaloes cooling off in ponds
Cloudless blue skies
Sunrises and sunsets
Gracing tall domes and minarets
The night sky full of stars..
Ah the sounds of summer!
Prayer bells and cymbals
Early morning “bhajans”
The call of the kulfi vendor
Crickets chirping, mosquitoes buzzing
The call of the “koel” heralding monsoon
The Indian summers, scorching hot
Are seared in my memory, I cannot
Separate summer from these memories in my mind
I remember with my senses, nostalgia I find…