Toys of Reality


The artist uses mud to make toys only he can make,

He is satisfied with his premature work

Sitting back, he wipes the beads of sweat on his forehead with his muddy hands.

His wife calls him for lunch. 

He leaves the slimy unfinished toys unprotected,

Hoping to come back in a short while. 

These (to be) toys are marvellous.

Ones which infants would cry over

One’s lovers, filled with passion, would buy each other.

A single glance at the toys 

Makes one want to look at it again and again,

Just like how lovers peep at each other in public.

The ball of reality crashes into the toys 

From a group of boys playing nearby 

The fastest and bravest one dashes in

To retrieve it, stepping on the toys in the process. 

The jealous rival artisan next door, on his way to work

Covertly kicks over the toys to ensure his survival. 

Adulthood in the form of wind

Crystalizes the toy’s predicament. 

harada 4 1
Woodwork by Kazuaki Harada

The artist has returned

From the meal he enjoyed, hoping to make progress at his work. 

The toys are still intact

But hardly recognizable, compared to their former selves

These are ones infants would cry over, but for the wrong reasons

Ones which would classify lovers as cheap 

A single glance at the toys

Makes one look at it again and again 

Not for its beauty, but for sheer mockery.

The artist is quick on his feet 

He jumps in to save the toys

He bends and twists the mould of clay

But reality, competition and adulthood have made the toys unrecognisable, rigid and hard. 

Nothing can save the toys now

Not even the magic of the artist. 

The irreparable toys crack, and crumble into chunks of set mud. 

Not willing to be saved

Not willing to be changed

Okay with being satisfied pigs 

Instead of dissatisfied aristocrats.


Picture Saurav Thampan

Saurav Thampan

Saurav is a law student from Kochi. He writes to take a break from the cold letters of law and to reconnect with the forgotten parts of himself. He thinks he is a blahcksheep because he doesn’t conform to the brackets others set for him. Rather, he insists on putting his own punctuation in life.  

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