Saffron Threaded | A. Anupama

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A. Anupama (Anu, for short) is a writer, multimedia artist, and graduate of Vermont College of Fine Arts. Her poems, translations, reviews, essays have appeared in many publications, including Prairie Schooner, Tupelo Quarterly, and Numéro Cinq. She teaches writing intensives at a small, public liberal-arts college near her home in the lower Hudson Valley of New York, where she loves to spend her free time painting watercolor meditations as well as perfecting her biryani recipe for her family and neighbors. More about her at




Children making a list of the kinds of love will say
“doggie love” and “love of flying” and “pizza love”
and even “love of colors,” “love of money,”
and I knew that when I started the exercise with
a roomful of eight-year-olds typing along
to the scratch of my scented marker
on the sheet of roll paper taped to the wall.

The list got beautifully long, like a banana flower.

After the workshop, they all
skipped out of the room to their parents,
and I wrote “parents’ love” in a bit of free space near the top.
My intern looked embarrassed when I said
“maybe it’s better that they don’t know.”
No one can see what ball of fire
holds them tight.