Langue and Parole

My mother speaks a language other than I.
She was a francophone in her

Canadian childhood. I am not part of her elite
vernacular assembly or

the linguistic, lyrical lodge between her and her
friends save watermarks of

words spoken and drafted here and there in
formless memories. My father

never fathomed much, but he soon caught up on
some chirping, their betrothal

telexed in both tongues.

I never threw myself into telling fleur from
papillon, but sometimes I want to

wander off into a foreign faubourg in search of
linguistic tesserae or stamped

editorials with fancy names for birds. I hopped
from preschool society to

college club for language class, my motives flaky
as eggshells on the sidewalk.

Perhaps I would never begin. The secret of
language is tight-lippedness.

Anannya Uberoi

Anannya Uberoi (she/her) is a full-time software engineer and part-time tea connoisseur based in Madrid. She has been previously recognized as the winner of Ayaskala Literary Magazine's National Poetry Writing Month challenge. Her poems and short stories have appeared in Jaggery, LandLocked, Deep Wild Journal, Tipton Poetry Journal, Lapis Lazuli, and MarĂ­as at Sampaguitas. Her writing has also featured on The Delhi Walla and The Dewdrop, among other literary blogs.