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A Hundred Gourds 4:3 June 2015

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page 12  

Raamesh Gowri Raghavan - India


Overture to a Root Canal


The sweet I love the most is the jangiri. I have to describe it here, because the description is itself a reliving of the moments spent eating one. A thick dough of black gram flour, kneaded to pouring consistency. Wrapped in a muslin piping bag and iced into the shape of a flower - right over a pan full of boiling oil. Fried to a rich red-orange, and then soaked in syrup.

I must have it cold, preferably refrigerated, so the sugar crystallises forming a thin frost around it. Not for me the philistine method of eating it piping hot. For me, the eating is unhurried, petal by petal, nibbling it by the edges, till only the central roundel remains. This I then place in the mouth till it dissolves. This is a time for meditation and the contemplation of the beauty of the world around me. For after it perhaps work and the sameness of it; or a twist in the course of life that takes me far away; or perhaps, just perhaps, another jangiri, with which to stretch time to infinity.

eugenol:
the smell of
peas pulao



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