Surely Mr.Feynman, youâ€™ve heard of Kumbakonam?
No, noâ€”my hometown, Kumbakonam. Iâ€™ve brought you its famous sathukudis
â€”But I thought the tuberculosis killed you?
It did. *coughs blood* Now let me try chalking one of those diagrams of yoursâ€¦what do you think?
Why, thank you Mr.Feynman, Iâ€™m glad you approve of my drawing skillsâ€”if I werenâ€™t a mathematician, Iâ€™d have likely been an architectâ€”or a puppeteer at the least
â€”I *sheepish* was actually referring to your fruitâ€”the, the…well itâ€™s yummy all the same.
Oh thatâ€”*a little disappointed*â€” Iâ€™ll bring you jackfruit the next time around
Iâ€™ve already explained it to Hardy
â€”Laurel and Hardy?
My mentorâ€”G.H.Hardy; the guy who had me shipped to England, it was the number of his taxi cabâ€”ayirathi ezhunuthi irubathi omb
â€”I thought it morbid at first
â€”I meant the anecdote; the numbers eating you from within; your cube roots of solitude, bed and bouillon
But I had no choice, Mr.Feynman; there wereâ€¦
â€”Please call me Dick
in Putney, Dick. Whoâ€™s Champollion? *tap dancing*
â€”And obviously, no taxi cabs in yourâ€”damn!â€”what was the name again? keeps
reminding me of bongo drumsâ€”you ever play bongo drums?
Iâ€™ve never had rum
â€”but hold on; I asked you about jackfruit; or was it starfish?
Yes, definitely an interesting one, but also an â€œunfavorable omenâ€, as Hardy put it
The starfish. I saw it on an English beach one frigid morning. Its five arms splitting me like five infinities
â€”No doubtâ€”starfish make for excellent cabbies
*Dusts his chalky hands and admires his Diagram*
â€”Is dying yummy?
I miss Laurel and Hardy
~ Arjun Rajendran
Arjun Rajendran‘s first collection of poems, â€˜SNAKE WINEâ€™, was published by the Zaporogue Press last year. His work has recently appeared at AntiSerious and in The Bombay Literary Magazine.