Varghese has no home

Varghese has no home.
Stays in his workplace.
Jesus’s very own man.
Big rosary around his neck.
And a matching wooden cross.
He gardens around the yard
On days of no work.
Holds a deep grudge
Against the trees around.

Doomed are they the moment
His eyes settle on them.

Asked him once whether
His rancor was because
Jesus was crucified on wood.
Or, was it the wheezing that
the Acacia trees caused?
Or, was it the itchy worms
from the soft wood trees?
He said time and again
‘Brother, I love the trees
More than you love them.’

Have seen many times
The birds from the trees
Chopped down by Varghese
Looking for their nests.

Clearing the bushes along
The road to the office was
Varghese’s job for the day.

When I went out for a smoke
Glowing was he about
How the place gleamed.

Midnight, after work,
Was driving along the path
Shorn clean by Varghese.

In the blaze of the headlight
A hare dashed frantically
Looking for its bush.

(trans from Malayalam by  Ra Sh)