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Tara Gupta
Tara Gupta
Tara Gupta
Tara Gupta
Tara Gupta


My father was born in south India

And never wears shoes in the house

He prays everyday on his way to work Thanks Shiva for this life, and bows 

My mother was born in urban China

And does taxes in Shanghainese 
She put me in all of the martial arts

All the kung fus and karates 

Coriander fills the air in our house

Mixed with some cumin and chili

Battles for dominance with other smells Like green onions and sesame 

But I am lost when it comes to the names Of the dishes I grew up on 
Is it chapati, dosa or roti? 
Porridge?—no, pao fan?—no, congee? 


And how can I ever try conversing

With all my uncles and aunties? 
Can’t speak Mandarin, no Cantonese too Not a single word of Hindi 


So at their parties I cling to the wall Waiting for them to be over 
I feel so alone, not able to speak 
Or understand my own mother 


I barely fit in with others at school

At least I know ‘nough to get by 
I laugh at their jokes and try to relate

And sometimes I don’t have to try 

But with my shallow depth of knowledge, I Worry for my future children 
I know too little to try to pass on

All of the culture of our kin
So what should I do when stuck between worlds?

Select one over the other? 
But if I do that, then what ‘bout my kids? Know only one half forever? 


Or will all my culture just die with me? Food and art and history past? 
They all say that I’m first generation 
So why do I feel like the last?


Sonia Savur

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Self Portrait

Anu Zaman

Anu_Zaman_selfportrait - Anusha Zaman.JP