Far reaches of space

The keyword was “the far reaches of space

We , children ,squatted in the river water with our folded legs firmly on the bottom sand and our head just above  the water

As the bottom sand pulled us away  we squatted firmly and looked over the dizzy waters 

Toward the far reaches of space,toward the triangular Salihundam hillock with a hole on the top

There was long long ago a monastery where the hole is.

Where people lived,ate ,walked and prayed

Now there are stones where the monks wrote in incomprehensible language

The water here smelled good ,smelled of the distant mountains of Orissa which was the river’s home

Our ears buzzed with the sounds of the boys who jumped into the river with a splash 

The brass pitchers of the women on the other side  came floating  towards us as they were filling slowly with brown water

There ,beyond the brown stretch of waterless river,were the boats that stood listlessly waiting for the passengers

Some times we,children ,played under the cashew tree on the hot sands of the river bank

There were beautiful yellow fruits at the top on which hung kidney-shaped nuts

Yellow fruits  half-eaten by the birds,that smelled so fragrant

Mom says don’t eat the fruits which are not good for your throat

But mom, they are so fragrant ! So delectable!

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