In New York’s Jamaica Bay, local Hindus perform visarjan, the traditional practice of setting sacred objects afloat on the water. To them, it is an age-old act of devotion. To some non-Hindus, it is an act of pollution.
Over time, the bark swelled and waned and folded over the wires, swallowing them. Now six of our fitneh trees have bumpy trunks, and I wonder whether their form is a reminder of our cruelty. We never wrapped any lights around the bougainvillea. They remain intact, their branches full of thorns, and perhaps for this reason they will not remember us.
Kamel had raised the American flag on his rooftop in the hope that the French would not aim their guns in his direction. But the French attacks were more wanton and severe. A shell raged toward his house, piercing one of its walls.