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Voicing Silence 7

Thursday, May 22, 2008

A quick tale 209

This product and others like this one

This product was not tested on animals, read the label on the face cream she was holding. She felt good just holding it. Good holding the box that held the cream that was not tested on animals. Though she didn’t know how animals would look with face cream on them. Probably no different to how they looked without face cream. Fewer wrinkles, may be. But then, you would have to get real close to see that the difference. And you wouldn’t want to do that to an orang-utan. Or a rhinoceros. And definitely not a giraffe. As giraffes are reputed to suffer from real bad halitosis. Though that remains to be confirmed. And will remain a rumour as long as no one ever gets close enough to smell its breath. And if they did they may also notice that the giraffe has fewer lines around the eye. In which case it would be safe to conclude that the giraffe has had a couple of smears of face cream tested on it. Which may be good news for the face cream as it then proves that the cream works. But bad news for the giraffe which may not have a say in the brand it prefers. But that is only for animal rights activists to comment upon. And not for ordinary consumers like herself who simply had a few minutes to spare during a Thursday lunchtime and chose to saunter into a shop flogging face cream that had not been tested on animals.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Afternoon

If I made a list of things I miss about India, the weather would certainly not feature in it. I never loved the raw red heat of Chennai summers and now that I’m away, I miss it even less. But yet the other day, when I was talking to family back in India and I heard them complain about the ruthless afternoon sun, I realised in a bittersweet way, that it was indeed the sensation of a summer afternoon I missed most. Crisply dried laundry, lone trickle of sweat down the back, drowsy long afternoons. And this week’s Saturday poem from the Guardian captures it effortlessly well.

Afternoon

-MR Peacocke

The wool rolls down. The needless droop

A spider at the corner pane

Schemes for a pittance line by line.

The dull doves in the neighbouring wood

Call Could you do Do do You could.

A wakeless lull that's less than sleep

Brims in her eyes and palms and lap.

Something is finished. Nothing's done.

A lapse, a loss, a truce, a peace.

One lacewing trembles at the netted glass.

~

Here’s what I want from you. Your memories of summer afternoons. Be it a photo, a poem, a story or anything that to you typifies the blessed dullness of a scorching mid-day in May.