Monday, January 20, 2014

Monday beach

At four Bela was developing a memory.
The word yesterday entered her vocab-
ulary, though its meaning was elastic,
synonymous with whatever was no long-
er the case. The past collapsed, in
no particular order, contained by a
single word.

.. the ink has dried,
And found its own perpet-  ual circuit here,
Cast its own net
Of little, formless    
 mimicry around itself.
And you must turn away,  smile ..
and forget.

It was the English word she used. It 
was in English that the past was uni-
lateral; in Bengali, the word for yes-
terday, kal, was also the word for to-
morrow. In Bengali one needed an ad-
jective, or relied on the tense of a
verb, to distinguish what had already
happened from what would be. 

i, iii  Jhumpa Lahiri
         The Lowland
         Alfred A. Knopf, 2013©

ii       Lawrence Durrell
          Selected Poems
         op. cit.

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