My mother’s sari fills the void she left behind.
It is her essence, it still carries her fragrance.
The nine yards are:
the nine years symbolic of her absence.
In the pleats of her sari,
I used to bury my head and
wish the cares of my life away.
And, they’d actually be gone.
Clinging on to the fall of her pallav,
I knew I was holding my anchor.
It was also my touchstone.
And sometimes, I would wipe my brow with it.
My mother’s saris, so fondly collected,
to be passed on to her daughters,
are still hanging in her closet.
I visit it time and again, and borrow from it.
In wearing her saris, I feel a sense of pride;
a surreal embrace that envelops me,
of clutching on to the nostalgic past,
which slowly slips away into memory.
But, there is this one sari belonging to Ma,
which I will never wear.
Never will I ever take it out of her closet.
I dare not move it or, wash it, or air it.
I will not share it,
when everything else is a matter of the mind
and all words and deeds of comfort fail,
this one sari is what I can hold in my hand
bury my head in,
still smell Ma in it.
My only way of filling the void, that she left behind.
– Shraddha 10/5/15