Written in Arlington

During the month of April 2020, Arlington Poet Laureate Emerita Katherine E. Young is posting poems from the forthcoming anthology Written in Arlington, which showcases the poets and poems of Arlington, Virginia.


Monday Morning & Chai 
by Sushmita Mazumdar 

You go change the world 
While I sit here on my back porch steps  
having my morning chai with the oak,  
the Black-Eyed Susan, and the chives.  
You go negotiate complex deals  
for peace and stability 
And I’ll look around to try and find  
where the cicadas hide when they  
sing their mesmerizing song. 
You go educate and inform  
the wide, wild masses 
And I’ll be here watching the squirrels  
do their morning warm-ups on the fence. 
And when you finally someday  
sit down to take a breath and  
enjoy the fruits of your labor 
I’ll still be here, basically, 
Doing nothing much. 
But I can make you a chai. 

Sushmita Mazumdar is the owner of Studio Pause, a community art space in Arlington, VA. She works across stories, book arts, and visual art, mixing into it the community who collaborate, discuss, and respond to inform her creations. From Mumbai, India, Mazumdar quit a fifteen-year career in advertising to write stories and make them into storybooks by hand, and encourage children, families, and seniors to share stories of home, heritage, and migration through art. http://studiopause.com

Written in Arlington / Spoken in Arlington is a print and digital collection of the poets and poems of Arlington, VA, edited by Katherine E. Young and published by Paycock Press (forthcoming, fall 2020). It is supported in part by Arlington County through the Arlington Cultural Affairs division of Arlington Economic Development and the Arlington Commission for the Arts. For more information, visit Arlington Arts.

Image: After the Rain mixed media/collage on canvas by Anya Getter (fragment)

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