I Wish We Could Go Back To The Time When…

By Sonya Rehman

I wish we could go back to the time when,

Holidays didn’t need to be validated by likes and crummy virtual hearts,

When driving up to Murree meant,

Not having to ‘check-in,’

And every misty evening, mountain top, slothful mountain snail didn’t need to be shared,

With such urgency,

Living in the eyes of the others,

As if our every breath, word, move, sneaky wind-passing,

Was to be tallied up, calculated, JUDGED,

I wish we could go back to the time when driving in our beat up old beige Suzuki meant a good time,

A swirly cone from Liberty,

The windows down…

I wish we could go back to the time when,

I didn’t have to strut around like I had a pair of balls,

An iron FIST,

And for once, just once,

Not feel so distrustful,

In a city that was always the womb,

I wish we could go back to the time when,

I wore my un-cynical DIL on my kurta sleeve,

Talking to Mama in the twilight,

About the fantasized loves of my life,

I wish we could go back to the time when,

Nana handed me a bouquet of red roses (and for once didn’t badger me about losing weight),

In India,

Where my body self-inaugurated womanhood in his bathroom (on Palace Road, in Bangalore),

At the age of thirteen,

With my first PERIOD,

I wish we could go back to the time when,

The now-clichéd weren’t the mainstream and the mundane,

And when staying out past your curfew meant a show-down at home,

There were rules wrapped in love,

That was validation enough,

Not likes, shares, crummy hearts,

That pixilated defecation that never fills up the 21st Century VOID,

I wish we could go back to the time when,

Instagrammed pictures of sides, mains, desserts,

Didn’t manipulate us to swoon over average food in nice cutlery,

(Just like cute profile pictures of average mummy-daddy chootias),

I wish we could go back to the time when,

The scarcity made you a better person.

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