Monday, November 4, 2013

Diwali once more

His eyes shine like that of a hungry kitten as the headlights of the car reflects in them. He is 6 or 7 eldest of 4 siblings and its a cold winter night in the North. Its Diwali today, his mother and youngest sister are shivering in high fever in their dimly lit hut in the slums. His father is missing with his drinking pals.  The other two are with him on the other side of the road rummaging the garbage through their freezing hands to find a coin that people may have thrown during the rituals or a big unused cracker that they could  sell. The headlights are too close but he has just spotted a ten rupee coin. He bends forward but is slightly late to bend back. His suffering is over.

The heavy embroidered saree is in place. the long artificial plait swings as she moves to the beat of the drum and sings aloud as if enjoying the attention from the neighbouring balconies and windows. The negotiations are louder than the songs, the juniors follow her lead in singing and negotiating. The servant serves them some juice in those separate glasses kept for the workers. The drummer stuffs the sweets and clothes into the bag. The lady of the house tells them to do their thing outside and not come in. The head eunuch blesses the new couple "May you have a son  soon !"

It is so easy and convenient to take two polarised views about Diwali
  1. We work hard all year why shouldn't we celebrate, spend money, burst crackers, exchange gifts?
  2. green Diwali, austere Diwali, socially aware Diwali

Ask the Margins
dear Power Center
your debates are useless
they change NOTHING.

Diwali once more.

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