The Lavenders-Utkarsh Pathak

Illustration by Ilisha Dhond

Amma always said
that lavender
is a plant of forgiveness.

She said it forgives even as it is dying,
cut down by the axeman’s toil.

With its dying breath
it will reward him
with the fragrance of its flower.

Abba said I was born
among the lavenders.
It is to their smell
that I cried my first breath.

He said I forgave as much as they did,
that I was happy then,
and that the lavenders did it.

The lavenders,
in every room
knew that –
they were happy;

The house would feel
this happiness in their scent.

I was there this summer.
The house was the same,
as far as I could see.
The walls were the same,
the rooms were just as big
and the hallway, slightly crooked
just as it had been.

But there were no lavenders anymore.
There was only black soil
and sorrow.


With my lavenders,
forgiveness lived in the yesterday,
the whispers of the house
were too loud to ignore

They said –
that the next child
to be born in these walls
would not be as forgiving.

The lavenders were gone.

Utkarsh Pathak is an 18-year-old first year student of Design at Srishti, Bangalore. He began his life at age 0, as most usually do, and spent his first few seconds confused about everything that’s happening. 18 years down the line, not much has changed. His confusion leads him to explore and interact with new art forms, which is what attracted him to Slam Poetry in the first place; it’s fusion nature of theatre and poetry. He’s been writing for as long as he can remember, and hopes to be able to explore better and more honest ways to do it.