I know all Ammi wants is to perch me on her shoulder and feed me the saalan she is busy stirring. I rest under her gaze a few moons but fly I must. I flap my wings, and escape her wrinkled, cupped hands only to return next winter with beakfuls of sagas, eyefuls of galas, and nightfuls of dramas from distant lands. Clutched in my claws are perfumes from Paris, artifacts from Abu Dhabi, janamaaz form Jordan, teapots from Turkey, keffiyeh from Kuwait, and magnets from Michigan. She looks at the calendar on the wall; she dabs her eyes with the corner of her dupatta; she places her palm on my head; she holds the items to her cheek, and she secures them in her gift trunk.
Sara Siddiqui Chansarkar is an Indian American. She was born in a middle-class family in India and will forever be indebted to her parents for educating her beyond their means. She now lives in the United States. Her life is blessed with plenitude but she is oceans away from her family. That pain makes her write and express herself. Her work has been published in MsMagazine, The Same, The Sidereal, Star82 Review among others. She blogs at Puny Fingers and can be reached at Twitter