25/ 2017: Missing Pieces

It is in my greatest joys,
that I miss your presence
Those moments of chaotic noise
When I can sense your laughter’s absence.

© Manivillie Kanagasabapathy

AN: Whenever I get great news or am happy, I have a moment – just a moment, where my heart twinges and I miss the people who made me who I am but are no longer with me. 



Day 338: Multiplicative

They say it takes you
7 times as long as you
knew someone to
completely forget them.

I still know you in
memories and moments,
though you are not
beside me.

So 700 years after
I pass, I shall
finally forget
all about you.

© Manivillie Kanagasabapathy

Day 298: Lost Brothers (Manimaran)

You would have been fifty this year,
Blowing out candles on a giant cake,
Surrounded by all near and dear
Instead, this year’s gift is heartache.

Empty party halls and wishes,
imagining age on your face
is it lined with deep creases
but still full of grace?

Would time have cooled that temper,
or would it still spark but burn quickly?
Could you have learned to speak gentler
or continued, to tell the truth bluntly?

I wish you left us with a daughter or son,
someone who would carry pieces of you,
so instead, I search for you in everyone,
looking for the next incarnation of you.

© Manivillie Kanagasabapathy

AN: My younger (elder) brother would have been fifty this year. 

We lost him in 1999, on his 33rd birthday. It’s one of those things where he remains perpetually frozen at that age, but it hit me this year, as we attended one of our (and his close) friend’s 50th birthday party. I know he hasn’t aged because I miss him every day and every second it feels like I (we) just lost him yesterday.  

I only got to (really) know him after I turned 9, he and my older brother had lived in Sri Lanka and India, where they were finishing hight school and going to University. So sometimes, I get petty, and I get mad because I knew him for such a very short time – 10 odd years.  Twenty lifetimes is never enough with someone you love. 


My Brother, Manimaran, on (I believe) my 10th Birthday Party

Day 249: Missing Appa (Dad)

I will always search for you
in the fine silken threads
of white Vaetti and shirt,
in grey hairs and dark skin
and eyes laughing behind glasses.
This is unchanging and true.

You are there in
glasses that magnify the
love and respect within,
The belief that humanity
is inherently good.

I seek you in words
that move me
speeches without end
knowledge shared freely
and words crafted in care.

I see you in fragments,
long fingers tapping the
rhythms of classic dance and song.
Tall bodies, limping from
stubborn decisions.
Aged frames which hide
childish wonder and
a witty mind.

You are the band at the beginning,
the dramatic stripe at the end,
wrapping around in protection,
a mix of the past you left behind
and the future you sought.

Though you only wore white,
You were the stripe of golden colour
On the edges of the Vaetti,
brightening our otherwise plain lives.

© Manivillie Kanagasabapathy

AN: It’s my dad’s birthday today, he would have been 81. A year and a bit since he passed and I still miss his wisdom. He would have been so proud of my taking on this challenge; he always wanted me to write. I am sad that I didn’t do it when he was around but also know he is in all the words I write.


IMG_2197 2

My dad and I.  Photo courtesy: Ramya J Images


Tamil words:

Appa = Dad

Vaetti = It is a rectangular piece of unstitched cloth, usually around 4.5 metres (15 ft) long, wrapped around the waist and the legs and knotted at the waist. (Wiki)

Day 83:  Longing

To dream of you is not enough anymore
To wake lying with your arms around me
The warmth of your breath on my skin
Your heart beat a tattoo under my hand.

I want to open my eyes to your resting face
Touch softly the lashes the shield your eyes
Brush the hard planes of your cheeks
Kiss tenderly the lips smile in secret.

Awakening instead to a clutched pillow
Hands longing to caress satin skin.

(c) Manivillie Kanagasabapathy