Sunita Thind – I have always been passionate about my writing and now I have the time to concentrate on it fully. I have dabbled in many things including being a model, primary and secondary school teacher and trained as a make up artist. Make up, poetry and animals are my passion. I have recently suffered from Ovarian Cancer and am grateful I have survived it but I am not in remission yet.
Brown on the outside.
White on the inside.
Said the Coconut Girl.
Jewelled doll in a salwar kameez
Gemstone bindiya targeted on the forehead.
Kiddha! Said the Coconut Girl.
All cinnamon legs in a profusion of glittered mini skirts.
Gin chaser, Whiskey Sour, chippy butty.
Fondled by the ‘Gaura’ boyfriend.
Meera Tika. Said the Coconut Girl.
Spangled head scarf gagging her.
‘You are so dark, lah,’ ‘You must lose weight lah,’
‘Tusee Karli’ ‘Tu see Muthi’
‘Did you see her niece? She got into Medicine.’
Chirps from the harpies, the banshees…the aunti jee, the mummy jee…
The Dadima, the Nanima….
Said the Coconut Girl.
Bejewelled Lengai, crystallized, hot pink and burnt gold.
Frenzied diamonds adorn her hair.
The perfect bride.
Said the Coconut Girl.
Mac cosmetic façade, mangled rhinestone embellished hot pants,
Holographic, stiletto boots…
Her dad saw her with that white guy.
Mute was the Coconut Girl.
Manacled to her Chura.
Her bedazzled bangles.
Terraformed to her Tika.
Feasting on a banquet of curries.
A Panjabi paradox was our sad little Coconut Girl.
Translations :Sarsee Akal! (‘Hello’ Punjabi) salwar kameez (Indian Suit) Kiddha! (‘How are you?’ Panjabi) ‘Gaura’ boyfriend. (Gaura- White) Meera Tika. (‘I am good,’ in Panjabi) ‘Meera Naam…….’ (‘My name is…’ is Panjabi) Tika. (Jewelled head piece-Indian) ‘Nahin! Nahin!,’ (‘No, No,’ in Panjabi’)
Gawping At The Gods Of The Gudawarda
Gawping at the Gods of the Gudawarda
Guru Nanak, Guru Hargobind, Guru Amar Das.
Waheguruji Ka Khalsa Waheguruji Ki Fateh.
“My face will be towards that person who says it first. My back will be towards that person who says it afterwards. I will be in between both of them, if both of them says it together.” Hence, in order to spread the message of brotherhood
Jewel tone chuni strangles me with all these customs.
Head must be covered with a scarf for a woman, a turban for a man.
Bare feet in the ceremonial hall, cover legs and arms for modesty.
Ik ounkaar satnaam karta purakh, nirrbhau nirvair aakal moorat, ajoonee saibhung gur prasaad
One universal creator, being. The name is truth the creative being, personified.
No fear, no hatred. Image of the undying. Beyond Birth. Self existent, By Guru’s Grace.
The five K’s emblazoned on the brain of me this Panjabi school student. Learning the Panjabi alphabet.
Kanga- slick with coconut oil my Dadima dragged through my hair.
Kesh – to symbolise spiritual power or in my case waist length knots.
Kirpan-Sikh sword for respect and justice.
Kara – unity of self and constant learning-which meant for me learning of cultural and religious restrictions.
I hear the Kirtan as my onyx black plait sloshes in my Dahl
and Aloo Gobi
I shovel in three roti into my mouth.
Before being dragged to worship in my itchy lime green and gold Salwar Kameez (Indian suit)
Jap aad sach jugaad sach.
True in the primal being. True through the ages.
The Granthi seated before The Guru Granth Sahib
Silver tipped beard of the Granthi sermonising and praying.
Atop his head is a burnt orange turban with a steel Khanda ornament fastened
I have numbed buttocks from sitting on the floor for hours of the ceremonial hall trying to decipher this exotic prayer. I am only partially bilingual.
I hear the vaja and dhol strike up a song a spiritual ‘Kirtan’.
The Dhol keeps drumming….
I continue to gawp and the gods of the Gudawara in befuddlement and awe.
Hai bhee sach, naanak hosee bhee sach
True here and now. O Nanak, forever and ever true.
Translations: the Gudawarda (Sikh Temple) chuni (headscarf) Kanga-comb for cleanliness Kesh-uncut hair Kara- steel bangle or in my case a golden one Kachera-shorts for modesty. Kirtan (Sikh religious hymns) Dahl (lentil curry) Aloo Gobi (potato and cauliflower curry). roti (chapattis) Salwar Kameez (Indian suit) The Granthi (Custodian) The Guru Granth Sahib (Sikh bible). Khanda ornament fastened (A circle with three weapons and a circle). This is the Sikh military emblem. vaja (harmonium) and dhol (drums)
The Moon’s Responsibility
Her face is a burnished massacre.
A diaphanous smile.
Glittering in enormity.
Grazing on the cult below.
Worshippers are her responsibility.
Eyes, shimmering transmitters.
Tin foil is her light,
Wax and wane.
Exhausted of her responsibility.
Hearing unintelligible homosapien squawks below.
Scouring an indigo sea with illuminated wisdom.
Marble heavy, exhausted of myths.
Cerberus licks her with inflamed tongue.
Sunless clouds, bloom magenta.
Ignited by nightingale and lullaby.
She is calcium and religion.
Plummeting to the stars.
Sucking nourishment from oceanic pearls.
Scratching away Lucifer.
Glittering and digesting angels.
Engorging herself on their sparkling souls.
It is her responsibility.
Calamitous Curry-Indian Banquet of Sabji
Paleek Paneer, Channa Masala
The obligatory roti that is burnt.
Oh my gesticulating tongue.
Dominion over these charismatic curries.
These sumptuous sabji’s
Fragrant dhals of yellow, lime, saffron and ruby lentils.
Scents of my skinny childhood.
Walled poppadoms, these radicalised colours.
Flash fried and kerosene bright.
A few scorchers to new nubile tongues.
‘Meera Dahl kaani’
‘Meera Do Roti Kaani’
Paratha lathered in golden ghee.
Ladle me with succulent lamb curry.
Overspilling from a gold saucepan, splattered up well worn walls.
My brother’s face dribbling with hot juice.
Small hands are slapped away from Punjabi fried chicken.
Chilli, garam masala, curry powder, turmeric whizzed up, doused on chicken and deep fried.
Basmati rice cumin ‘chaawal’ seeps up thick, sweet sauce of my mothers
A shimmer of dishes.
Mitosis of curried cuisine.
Translations :Paleek Paneer, (Cheese and Spinach Curry).Channa Masala (Chick Pea Curry). sabji’s (Punjabi for curry). ‘Meera Dahl kaani’ ‘I want to eat lentil curry,’-Punjabi. ‘Meera Do Roti Kaani’ ‘I want to eat two chappatis,’ Punjabi. Rasam- a South Indian soup bulging tomatoes, tangy sour spices. cumin (jeera)‘chaawal’ (rice) ‘Katsup’ Soya Sauce pork.
The littered glittered sky, the mother’s head is turned towards.
Tunnel of muscle.
Cherry syrup, soup like, berry and oily bodily juices.
Warm womb of water.
A glisten of forearms.
Squirming transparent skulls.
Bloody arcs and cackling cries.
Watered and dangling.
Scoop the soft brains and its new software.
Jelly and amniotic waters gushing from the rear.
Cavity of silver and ribs.
Dazzling in a yolk of birth.
Greased and warm you were.
Swollen and grappling.
Skin of the maternal.
Fleshy and oiled dancing in flashes.
Coddled in silks.
Saturated, no more a foetus.