Poem

BETTER A DOG THAN YOUNGER BROTHER

—Persian proverb

When did I start seeing him father-figure?
It wasn’t an endearment shining shoes
for my older brother. Himalayas
shaped his character. I couldn’t call out

his name. “We don’t address our father
using first name, Harry the shrink said.
“He can’t help but see you as kid brother
but, remember, he gets into his pants
as all men do, one leg follows the other.
Banish imaginary gods. Demolish

the ego, for a seed mingles into dust
before blooming. The world is vast. Plumb
your own universe. Forgive your father
for new wife younger than his daughter.”

More poems by Rafiq Kathwari here.

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