By Cyril Dabydeen

He wavered, he kept thinking–  imagining, Dr Aziz did, hoping to meet  his wife somewhere after, and he began  to love her only after being married, now  thinking with an English sentiment…  being a medical doctor. 

He amused himself thinking about this;  she was gone, and there was no one  really like his wife; over time he began  to feel she’d sent all the beauty and joy  of the world into Paradise! Would he  meet her again beyond the grave?

He’d lost the sensuous feeling gradually, 
for his relatives had chosen her to be 
his wife; but, you see, the feeling would 
have disappeared after a while in 
nature’s way; and being himself only, 
in the Muslim manner. 

Belief in the life to come, almost like 
Christian epiphany, which paled to a hope, 
then reappeared in a dozen heart-beats: 
the corpuscles in his blood deciding 
which opinion he should hold long– 
as nothing ever strayed, nothing passed 
that didn`t return, the circulation being 
ceaseless, it kept him young, for he truly 
mourned his wife, her selfdom. 

She became a mother to his son–  and in giving him a second son she’d died;  Aziz realized what he had lost, and no  woman could ever take her place; now  what is the uniqueness of love anyway?  Could Miss Quested tell?  Mrs Moore…let her be! 

Ah, let Mrs Moore be her own self  –an echo divine, and oh, let it  be a declaration, about where we go  from here, not to the Marabar caves  again, you see. Aziz will keep asking with  tremor in his veins; with Professor Godbole  saying “Come, come,” in his Brahmin`s way!  Adapted from E.M. Forster’s  A Passage to India. 


I kiss you my chair, table,  typewriter, I kiss you all;  I take offence at this leaving,  a feeling bursting in my heart  with words alone I cannot tell. 

Artefacts, signs of creativity–  compelling moments really  sharing parts of myself &  asking you to forgive me  for not giving of my best. 

Momentum of blood & bone,  a bleeding heart in my  archive of feelings with  wood & plaster I bring to you,  the years’ testament only. 

Cyril Dabydeen is a recent prize winner in the International Short Story in English Conference and the Strands International Flash Fiction contest. His stories have appeared in numerous literary magazines, e.g. Prairie Schooner and World Literature Today/USA. His short fiction books include My Undiscovered Country, Play a Song Somebody, My Brahmin Days, and North of the Equator. He is Ottawa Poet Laureate Emeritus.