Person with two hands covering their face, but their face is shown through the hands
Mental Health

Miss Lily Grantham

Country of Origin: India

My garden of wonders bloomed with an amalgamate of

pink roses with overlapped thick velvety petals, and

herbs – chives, basil, fennel – common points for pollinators every

morning when I bid her goodbye before school bus on leathery wheels

that did back and forth for gaining orientation direct towards

the church on Fridays for prayers to Mary and her child who

had a relationship dearest rested upon tenderness and mercy. I

traversed with her too under polka dot umbrella and with raincoat on

accidental open-day meets during wet north-west monsoons, when

I circumvented my path instead of ascending the curled stairs.

Rama would roll in, a bundle of all cotton, silk, georgette clothes, with

her brown hands decorated with red mirror bangles that broke

time after time due to thrash in a nasty steamroller wedlock that

never made her a mutineer, but instead suppressed her vital force. Her

will saw dips on an electrocardiogram displayed on squared checks, not

a notion gladly tackled, but remains in subconscious displayed via weedy actions which

transforms into a chap-fallen identity abnormal for novice who

takes unsystematic treats on laxity and surmises nothing but judgments

coming as unbidden visitants in black gowns with purdah falling on features.

Songbirds did not recognize and flew higher to break free at least.

Not me in need of solid earth to certify belonging of courage here only.

As I look back on it, I could not step up there. My heart looked

for objects to insert and stop instantly the yelling, for numbness undo

paralyzed body full of sweat blisters on my broad forehead lowered,

with weariness out of shouting in reply to her abhorrent weeping. I

never could crawl on all four limbs, losing conviction in balance, this

unbridled anxiety lowering my posture pressing me to the ground. Thud.

She closed her eyelashes the moment blood rushed out of her minor nose, then.

No therapy I need. I rebelled in light blue uniform open frizzy hair for

the flawed emotional control would come again as ghost threatening.

Confronting my deformed motherhood was not capable to pull out

her from the cemented graveyard held by a chiseled stone by

the name of Miss Lily Grantham.

Thank you to Christina Lee for their inspired edit on this piece and everyone else on the Mental Health team.

If you are interested in submitting a piece to the DG Sentinel, please visit our submissions page here.

Sonali Sharma is a post graduate in Environmental Studies from Panjab University, Chandigarh. She is also a published writer and poet. Her works have been featured in the Indian Ruminations, Indian Periodical, Kali Project, US, FemAsia, Indus Woman Writing, International Human Rights Art Festival (IHRAF), New York. She wishes to pursue scientific research in future.

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