One died when my grandmother praised
the neat way I folded the clothes.
A couple when I picked up the ladle,
Sorry for my mother
Who struggled with my brothers’ voracious greed
And my father’s fastidious tongue.
Vatsala started writing at the age of 48 alongside her profession as a systems engineer at IIT, Chennai. She reads her Naan En Kavingnar Agavillai [Why Didn’t I Become a Poet] for Bol, with her translator and daughter K Srilata.