Puri Town: Sketch no 27

by Priyadarshi Patnaik

I can only paint

The way I know

With the yellows they mix with lime

And wait to dry in the sun among sounds

Of pigeons making homes among

Pictures made of salt and sea on walls

That peel like skins of old men

Among film posters with an adult letter A

Splattered with well aimed cow dung by

Children of these winding streets

That somehow still mange to get a sleepy

Winter sun to dapple houses made of cement

Straw and bamboo in unpredictable layers

Of money and time

And uncertain times

To love a town that has been painted over

So many times by the painters

Of old chitrakara artists' streets in bold

Colours on lime on wood on stone on palm leaf

The only way I know