He must have sniffed me passing him, his gora girl. Perhaps I smelled like keka, my hair atwirl?
He chased me like a lion. I whirled around, hearing pounding behind me, so frightened.
My name is Bobby, he told me. You are the prettiest kuri I have ever seen. Hanji.
By next week I was hooked on him, his black eyes. Another teddy bear, rose gold, by my bedside.
He drove me in luxury. I was transported, speeding through the city. Leaving my country.
I love you, he told me. You are special to me. You have the prettiest muha I have ever seen. Touch me.
Each week he grew angrier at me, my naivety. Disturbing his dosa with my purity. Confusing.
He invaded my room like a Sultanate, nothing about this man was Sikh. He dripped his lack of control on my carpet.
I, as a girl, stayed on. But he told me he loved me, I was his jaan! I learned his real name was Pavitar.
Overnight in his apartment, I couldn’t sleep. Counting pops of soaking chickpeas while he dozed next to me.
My caramel charmer, only accessible in his dreams. Bobby pins in his bed? A pink toothbrush next to my red? Why was he hiding his phone calls from me?
I decided I’d rather not lose him. I would just lose me. Because maybe no one else could love me?
I told him how I saved myself up. About my ten years of sweet fantasy. He could marry me. I loved him too. I could do a sari.
One January snow, I didn’t tell him no.
But in the last minute, I remembered what I meant!
And I said NO!
But my arms were bent. My wrists held behind me.
He cracked my head against his headboard. I became the sheet.
I crunched through the snow dripping blood behind me. I needed to get clean. Safa.
Before I left, I had prayed to Ganesh in his cabinet door.
Move this obstacle. Move me.
I am cargo.