A Picture of Our Sister

By Anjoli Roy


If I could take a picture of our sister, I’d want to take it today, after the morning mist rose off the evergreen trees in silver morning light, when the afternoon came and went like a hot hand, when the sun sail was slack in the corner and the sun had slipped behind pink clouds turned black with promise.

If I could take a picture of our sister, she’d be standing at the threshold of here and there, the dark doorway contracting in and out those of us drifting onto the deck, so many fish around their strong reef.

If I could take a picture of our sister, she’d be calling her sixth baby home from that threshold, saying she’s ready, and having baby come, just like that, wide-eyed and alert as her face surfaced the birthing tub, and she took in her papa and iya, two of her brothers, her sister, her dadu, her masis, with a look that said, quietly, that, yes, this is about what she had been expecting.

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Anjoli Roy - In fall 2017, Anjoli Roy received her PhD in English and creative writing from the English Department at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. Her dissertation, “Where the Water Is,” is a collection of creative nonfiction stories about her family that touches on her experiences as a mixed-race Bengali and German/English/Irish American, and of the body, healing, what it means to be a great granddaughter of a freedom-fighter, and her father’s experiences of growing up in the segregated south. Her recent work has appeared in Waxwing, The Asian American Literary Review, Hippocampus Magazine, Kore Press’s Poem of the Week, Kweli, River Teeth, and Spiral Orb. Links to her work are available at www.anjoliroy.com