“How much did you say it will cost?” inquired a prospective buyer.
I loomed into that calculating lawyer trance. How much? How much?
The words echoed. Much like the mirror ahead trapping my reflection as I lie down enlisting, enumerating, emancipating. Stock count was in order to liquidize my assets.
This house has been lived for more than 78 years, carving the secrets of our ancestor’s warm prints in its canvas. How much for the whispers of love engrained in these walls? For the stifled sobs I secretly shared?
The laughter downstairs when they met every weekend sprawled on the mat, hitting serendipitous shots at a game of Carom and Ludo. The cackle of old stove, your uninhibited giggle, clanking of utensils when looking for your favorite “chamach” (spoon). The number of screams accumulated in the beams of the balcony where you forced me to spy on many of unsuspecting passerby’s scratching, poking their nose, checking their reflections in the mirror, fixing their hair-
My name sieved in, my younger self, when you called out my name unabashing-ly from the unfounded darkness of store where the bulb always failed to survive more than a week, where you couldn’t find ‘that’ coat you specifically needed to wear that very day.
How much for the leaking faucet that kept us busy wiping the kitchen like a team ready to uphold any natural disaster?