The Pipal Tree
(At Bauji’s Place)

Shining so much in love.
Seven green leaves,
Fall upon the crinkled backs
Of suffused autumn heaps.
Seven fresh leaves of Pipal Tree.

I collect them with reverence,
Like pieces of great finery.
I sought their beauty
Through their placate look,
Kindling in my hands.
The keynotes of my childhood talk to me.

My remainder days will immortalize
The contoured, knotty trunk of the Pipal Tree —
Which had timelessly stood
Against Bauji’s unused car garage.
The garage was older than the abounding Pipal Tree.

Where ... passing through a dozen seasons,
I had made a little courtyard,
Akin, to my flower-dreams.
Then ... around the rotund tower,
Made impish appearances: playing hide and seek!
Again and again — by the sides of my Pipal Tree.

Geeta Chhabra

The Pipal Tree — The Ficus religiosa is a species of banyan fig native to Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, southwest China and Indochina. It is a large dry season-deciduous or semi-evergreen tree up to 30 m tall and with a trunk diameter of up to 3 m. The leaves are cordate in shape with a distinctive extended tip. The tree's massive trunk is often the site of Hindu and Buddhist shrines.
Bauji — Grand-father (The word originates from Punjabi language).
Bauji — My mother’s father.

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