Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Ode to an Ajwain Life.....

Ajwain   (known variously as carom, ajowan, or bishop's weed)  leaves are a favourite for making bhajias.

 Easy to grow (from cuttings), with their smooth texture, amazing flavour, not to mention nutritional benefits  and slightly stiff physique, they are ideal material for coating and frying, on a rain drenched Mumbai monsoon afternoon.

While we enjoy, it suddenly comes to mind, that it isn't  such a pleasing prospect,if you are an ajwain leaf......

An ode.....  to those who simply wait and get fried in life .....

एक रेखीव , मउ , हिरवे आयुष्य ,
जोडी जोडीने किशोरवयात पदार्पण करणे ,
वर्षा ऋतूच्या शिडकाव्यात ओले चिंब होणे

चण्याच्या पिठाच्या विरहात तुटून जाणे ,
आसमंतात भिनलेल्या ओव्याच्या वासात
गुंग होउन
भजीच्या पिठात गटांगळ्या खाणे ……

अचानक गरम तेलात पडणे,
मोठे होणे,
आणि फुगून जाणे .

रेखीव , मउ , हिरवे आयुष्य
कसे एकदम
सोनेरी, ओबडधोबड , चकाक्त बनून
गरम चटका देउन जातं

नशीब ,
आयुष्याच्या शेवटच्या क्षणी
घोटभर चहा बरोबर होता….
A green, soft life,
full of direction,
a birthing and growing up
in identical pairs,
a teenage getting drenched
in monsoon showers.

A 'Besan'ic*  pining
for the soft yellow flour,
and a sudden drowning
in its fragrant paste
amidst whiffs of ajwain
celebrating in the air...

A sudden growing up,
and a puffing in consternation
as they fall in hot oil.

The green soft life
is history,
as they now singe the mind,
in their latest
hot golden, shining
amorphous avatar.

Thank God,
they had a cup of tea
for company
in their last moments....

*Besan ~ garbanzo flour, staple cover of all bhajias

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