Five

He was standing partially open-mouthed, his black knees covered thinly with white sand.

The right leg of his fading blue shorts had folded itself upward, at the edge, and the dirty brown band-aid on his thigh was curling at one end.

He had his father’s checkered handkerchief, folded twice, pinned to the pocket of his light blue shirt. His nose dribbled onto his upperlip, but he seemed to pay no attention.

His attention was paying its dues elsewhere. A few meters away, his classmate had spread a napkin neatly on her lap, and was tackling a deep, deep brown chocolate cake with a fork too big for her pudgy little hand.

He looked at her, with some intensity. The rest of the intensity, was masked with a silent pride that was innate. Pride of where he came from. Yet, every aspiration his head could come up with, seemed to manifest itself as a cuboid of chocolate, with generous amounts of icing, that was being hacked at by a miserably weilded fork.

His stupor broke. He blinked in rememberance.

He turned, and walked confidently to his own home-woven wire basket.
He sat down, unfolded his napkin over his folded legs.
He withdrew his yellow lunchbox, and calmly opened it.

Its emptiness did not dull his enthusiasm.

Instead, he licked the tip of his right index finger,
and picked at the crumbs, one by one.

Four

It was all for his
taking.

And he took it,
with time.

A universe,
treasured in units
called moments.

Till one day, he
forgot to forget
himself
in fleeting somethings.

Forgot to flutter.
Forgot to feel.

Today, he told me,
the
biting cold,
a moon blushing shades of gray,
a mouthful of fragrance of a flowers busy dying,
a silent beam of moonshine locking her finger under his chin,

made him spend the night
crying.