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Pallavi Narayan
Pallavi Narayan


 


NONVERSATION
 
I avoid speaking of politics. I know there
will be people speaking over me and I’m
too tired of fending them off. My voice
gets tinny and high and I lose my cool and
I get flushed and warm and all in all,
uncomfortable.
 
They gather in newsrooms. Blather on
news shows. Gather in homes and mutter.
On occasion there is a whimper, without
the accompanying bang.
 
Things can get awkward. And all I usually
want is a measure of comfort.
 
So I refrain. I am made to feel
embarrassed, too, of not speaking. It’s as
if a challenge is the only way they engage
with one.
 
Challenges are usually viewed as good in
the sense that the overcomer can say they
did. Overcome, that is.
 
And that is the point they all shake their
heads in unison and mutual
congratulation. The furtive smiles between
fingers. Wary eyes betray their insecurity.
 
For security too has a sorry price. And it
won’t except one.
 
I get uncomfortable and warm and flushed
and my voice gets high and tinny and I get
tired of fending them off even as I lose my
cool and they shout all over me and they
are about to…
 

♣♣♣END♣♣♣

Issue 79 (May-Jun 2018)

feature INDIAN WRITING IN ENGLISH
  • Editorial
    • Editorial: GJV Prasad
  • Poetry
    • Amlanjyoti Goswami
    • Arundhathi Subramaniam
    • Bibhu Padhi
    • Brati Biswas
    • Deepa V
    • Ishmeet Kaur
    • Janaky Sreedharan
    • Jyotirmoy Sil
    • Keki Daruwalla
    • Malati Mathur
    • Manjari Thakur
    • Mrinalini Harchandrai
    • Nabina Das
    • Nitoo Das
    • Pallavi Narayan
    • Priya Sarukkai Chabria
    • Rajashree Gandhi
    • Richa Dawar
    • Rochelle Potkar
    • Sanjeev Sethi
    • Semeen Ali
    • Somrita Ganguly
    • Smeeta Bhoumik
    • Sujay Thakur
    • Sukrita Paul Kumar
    • Sumita Puri
    • Tabish Khair
    • Temsula Ao
    • Uddipana Goswami
    • Vidya Namika
    • Zaara Haroon
  • Essays
    • Gujneet Aurora: Nayantara Sahgal’s ‘Rich Like Us’
    • Sami Ahmad Khan: Annihilation of Cloning
    • Suniti Madaan: Tinkle through the Male gaze
  • Graphic Novel (Excerpt)
    • Devapriya Roy & Priya Kurian: Excerpt from ‘Indira’, a graphic novel
  • Long Fiction (Excerpt)
    • Saikat Majumdar: Excerpt from ‘The Scent of God’, a novel
  • Short Fiction
    • Krishna Shastri Devulapalli: ‘An Open Letter to Marimuthu the Istriwallah’
    • Leisangthem Gitarani Devi: ‘The wind Whispers’
    • Monoj Hazarika: ‘The Journey’
    • Pooja Elangbam: ‘Negotiation of two Worlds in a third Language’
    • Shayeari Dutta: ‘Turf’
    • Srinjoyee Dutta: ‘One for Sorrow’