On the night my grandfather rejected tea
and offered his last breath instead,
the earth shifted an inch.
And I listened out for a rustle of leaves
or a flash of thunder
amidst the wailers’ phonation.
At the funeral,
when the chorister sang
the paradise hymn in falsetto,
I imagined a brood of angels
heralding the arrival of my grandfather
who was migrating in a boat of glass.
It is a decade now,
and sighs have replaced hymns
in the order of memories.
The elegies too return to me
the way an empty alley
returns our gift of words in multiples.