My house has people who run experiments
Like most other houses with people where
Some like to stir the pot, some like to tinker.
My father likes to salvage broken, discarded things,
Like making one arm of a scissor, separated from its sister arm
Into an instrument to plough through the mud in the many pots wedged together on our window sill.
He likes apples, oranges, watermelons and papayas
But he likes mangoes the most.
So he made a little contraption with a small bag and tied at the end of a pole
To pluck mangoes from the tree outside before the monkeys take them away from him.
My mother likes to dye fabrics with onions and turmeric
And leaves and twigs and tea bags and mordants and other kitchen chemicals.
She thinks of different ways to say the most obvious things
Through a brush stroke and a paint box or through waves of charcoal –
Crimson for power, blue for a muted, tired day and green for vitality or
Black and white for its quintessential game of chiaroscuro.
My brother talks about activating agents
And leavening and emulsifying and folding.
While checking for sponginess and airiness and density and weight
Against the background of the philosophy of conduction and convection.
And I have my own experiments.
Including an attempt to write this poem.