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Navrin Madras
Lingua domum
(The Language of Home)

I saw you in a book long ago.
Nouns, adjectives, verbs, adverbs,
Your cells differentiated and labeled.
Clauses, phrases, idioms, expressions,
Your organs dissected, tissues identified.
It helped me see you sharply,
Like a well-focused photograph,
Stimulating the rods and cones in my retina.
But how do I sense you today?
In smiles I haven’t seen in years,
Heartbeats that sounded in silence,
Laughter that filled every space,
Touches that warmed my skin,
Hugs that filled my arms.
Familiar places that I visit without ever leaving.
I open my mouth,
You take me home.

Navrin Madras
My City

Before I had drawn a week’s breath,   
Arms brought me into your embrace.
New, your sights filled my eyes; your sounds 
Grew into my heartbeat.
Amid your bustling streets, I
Learned to cross happy ways.
Often I think of you as I
Reside thousands of miles away now,  
Ever wishing you enveloped me again.

Navin Madras teaches Computer Science at Elizabethtown CTC. His favorite writers include Martin Cruz Smith, P. G. Wodehouse, and W. Somerset Maugham.

 

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