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Song of the Little Road
Characters

Apu—boy of six
Durga—girl of eight
Auntie—“Father’s” mother, old bag of bones
Oaf
Mother—disillusioned
Father—impotent
same ol same ol
Neekamel—God
Fruit has no name on it
learning to love generously


      Bamboo birds and girls in gardens

Oil, salt, chilies stolen from the kitchen


like a fork in the road


the orchard is private property


Auntie: Must I ask for chilies & guava at my age? And anyway, fruit has no name on it.





                 The candyman always wants 
                 more than the sweets he offers

                 He promotes desire, discord
                 with his Halvah and fudge


Mother drags daughter
by her beautiful mane
beads and seeds fall from her
magic box—cowries

                 inadmissible
                       desires
                       dying’s
                 the easy part
                 like shutting off the projector and sitting in the dark

Afterwards brother finds her
precious booty. Neekamel keeps guard.

Mother: This home is like living in the forest!
              No one to talk to.

We stop looking
At the other


                 Apu: There’s a ghost in the water.

This is about monsoons
                    towels
                 her seeds
                 buttons

                       his

                 sex


Sometimes it’s necessary to leave home. 
 

Martine Bellen’s works include This Amazing Cage of Light (Spuyten Duyvil) and the monodrama opera Moon in the Mirror (text cowritten by Zhang Er and music by Stephen Dembski).