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This poem is taken from PN Review 66, Volume 15 Number 4, March - April 1989.

Maninagar Days Sujata Bhatt

They are always there
just as pigeons or flies
can be always there
and the children have to fight them off,
especially during those hot May afternoons
when they dare to jump down from the trees
into the cool shaded spots, the corners between
the canna flower beds
still moist from the morning's watering.

Monkeys in the garden -
I'm talking about rhesus monkeys
the colour of dirt roads and khaki
              and sometimes even of honey.
Rhesus monkeys that travel in small groups,
extended families: usually three or four mothers,
frequently two strong males, sometimes a very old

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