And now, I want you to close your eyes one last time before everything ends. We won’t get a second chance at this. It’s now or never.

I shall count to 10 in my mind, and you will hear me count with your eyes closed. When I reach 10, I shall whisper in your ear. It will be a heart-to-heart whisper meant only for you.

Then, after listening to my whisper, it will be your turn to count in your mind. But you will count backwards from 10 to 1. Don’t say or think anything at that very moment. There must be no words between us. Nobody and none of the things that surround us should get to know anything. Not even you and I. Everything between us will be an unspoken heart-to-heart.

And then, when you begin counting backwards, I shall whisper again in your ear. I shall finish before you end the count. Only then must you open your eyes.

We will see the unseen. We will hear the unheard. We will touch what can’t be touched. We will smell what can’t be smelled. We will taste what can’t be tasted. We will feel what can’t be felt. We will dream what can’t be dreamt. We will live what can’t be lived. And we will love what can’t be loved.

Deal? We begin now. Don’t rush. This has to be done very carefully and slowly as if death masquerading as life were at our doorstep, waiting to deal the final blow. Time, in its dying moments, has chosen us to be the sole recipients of the last remnant of its own flesh and blood. Who knows – it could be a boon. We live off it as slowly as possible so as to prolong its end indefinitely and until infinity.

Ready? Eyes closed. Yes, just like this. On my count…

Day 18

Wednesday, April 8 2020


you bartered love – our only hope –
for Time – our only foe –
at last.


you discovered
the end of infinity
at last.

The Cleansing

seeing a sprinkler nozzle aimed towards him,
the man whispers, “be still, darling,
it is going to rain.”

clinging to the man, the child says,
“why is the rain so prickly,

“don’t you remember, my dear,
the first rain is always

“Daddy, daddy,
is this our new

Day 19

Thursday, April 9 2020


you wondered
if i was dead or alive
at last.


the rumour – dead man found alive –
turned out to be true
at last.

The Game

“don’t be scared, my child,
the gun the man is holding is only
a toy.”

“Daddy, daddy,
why can’t i come

“listen, my darling, remember the game;
you stay in that box, i stay in this box;
cross this line, and you will lose two points.”

“Daddy, daddy,
can you make me a toy gun
just like that man’s?”

Day 20

Friday, April 10 2020


my life
is in your hands
at last.


i couldn’t plead innocent
even when not guilty
at last.

The Savings

“Daddy, daddy,
why aren’t the dogs barking

“because they have their tummies full
and have gone to sleep,
my child.”

seeing the little girl slip a slice of bread into her pocket,
the man says, “eat it today, darling, we will be given some more

looking at the man, the woman says,
“what if tomorrow
they don’t?’

Day 21

Saturday, April 11 2020


at last has come
your turn
to hide.


at last has come
my turn
to burn.

The Act

“Daddy, daddy,
the little girl is not waking up,
is she…?”

“no, no, son, she’s not,
she’s only pretending
just like that man there.”

“wake up, little girl,
i will show you
how to…”

“don’t you dare show her
the tricks

Day 22

Sunday, April 12 2020


my past
collapsed into your present
at last.


the belief – you are mine and i am yours forever –
at last.

The Farewell

“Daddy, daddy,
tell them to stop raining
the prickly rain on us.”

“Daddy, daddy,
can you get me some

“Daddy, daddy, i want to go back
to the house
with the prickly rain.”

“what are you going to tell her now?
what is going to happen to her?”
says the woman to the man.

Excerpted with permission from Love in the Time of Quarantine, Siddhartha Gigoo, Kindle edition.