DIASPORA

How did the thick flat
trapezoidal rock
nudging the palace museum

get there? It’s too heavy to be lifted,
let alone carted off.
The Art Diaspora Collective

had early claimed it.
Tagged in white as obj#31,
the tiny letters, sign

and numbers shouldered by the rock
failed to withstand
these slight monsoon rains.

Never have I seen anyone sit on it,
or beside it…
with a cup of tea or a book

or with a comrade
locked into a chessboard gambit
or like a tourist, out of breath

from the fume-clogged air.
Last week, inexplicably, it lay on its side
in the gutter opposite Nag Pokhari

pointing north, away from town.
The next day it vanished. Sunk beneath the pond’s
moss and sludge? or as foundation

for a building that will
never fully rise? Or back to the hill-side quarry
where women with child

slam chisels into stone
till the granite breeds gravel.
Not art, but fate.

To start life far from home,
in bits and pieces

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