Bhanu Kapil

from “India: Notebooks”

An account begun, mid-ocean, in a storm.

I went to Vimhans in New Delhi, poking holes with my umbrella in the shimmering air.

Beyond the hospital’s waiting room, art galleries exploded, crumpled, and were recollected: bags of dust.

I was visiting a person with a head injury. A bulky cloud of soot came out of her mouth when she spoke. “Who’s that?”

I was visiting a person who needed medicine. She needed a mask.