Bihar

I’m back in Bangalore now and am still unable to reconcile myself to being in a city.

Sometimes I dream about Bihar – the relief camps, the masculine eyes, the submerged villages with bones dried and now glittering in the sun.

I know that I am not emotionally capable of handling it. So I distance.

I hear with the unfeeling ears the stories which are being told to me – of the woman who lost her house, of the nine people who drowned in the ferry which was taking them home, of the uppercaste man who complained that he was not entitled to benefits. Unfortunately, I am of the opinion that social work is for the poor. The rich can handle themselves.

People have lost land, people have lost homes, people have lost lives. People have lost everything.

I am reading it in the papers. I am watching it on television. I am hearing about it from people there.

I turn around and go back to my life.

My work. My children. My home. My life. My intact, perfect life.

While the rest of the world disintegrates around me, I remain alone and together, perfect.

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