Komal Patel Mathew

An American
October 05, 2012

Every Diwali, I explain to my friends at school why I am so tired—garba it’s like dancing—pujas? I guess like praying—  I explain in fragments because even we don’t know why we wash statues with milk, why worshipping God takes so many coats. I don’t ask,  just sit beside my mother when she sings. My sister and I watch our father struggle to cross his legs; his laughter resting on his lifted knees.  He closes his eyes, pretending to pray. We believe my mother made this temple herself, found pictures and tiny murtis, gold coins with Shiva, rice and turmeric  stored in tiny steel jars.