letter to chuiya.... my li'l sister

Sweet little chuiya,
The clock just struck four and there.....
            Do you hear  the golawala call ?
            Do you hear the clatter of his cart-wheels
                         The shrills following him thence ?

Ever since the day of the mela
I haven't had a single gola....
saved every aana in my pot
so that together we can have  orange and kala khatta ,-
when someday-    a policewala brings you home.

Li'l sister, I promise
I'll buy you the red and golden bangles,
             the shining bindis you adore...
I'll even give you my gudiya  
for which you had begged and implored...
My dear sister please come home
I'll never fuss with you again
I'll give you my mala and lehenga... 
O' come home for ammi's sake.....

At night,  after the lights dim off
I have often heard ammi sulk,
heard her cry, whimper sometimes
and say, Chuiya, my l'il one.... my li'l darling child....
She thinks you have forgotten us
or something terrible has struck...
But abbu comforts, -says, have faith in Allah,
and soon  He'll  bring our gudiya to us...

I wish i could keep abbu's faith
and not be torn like ammi...
But four Ids have passed without you
and the fifth   i am scared   will pass by too...
I fear that you've forgotten us 
and blame myself hence....
Had i known li'l sister   you'll abandon us thus
I would never have left you   and run after the candywala thence...

*aana is penny,  gola is ice-candy,  golawala is ice-candy man, gudiya is doll, mela is fair in Hindi.

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