Category Archives: India


The best of the poems, photos, and meditations to appear on UPICTURE have now been collected in a book,  KILLERS IN TUTUS, available at Amazon.  Click here.  The cover photo appeared on November 2, 2012 in an essay on Fasching … Continue reading

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Nine stories up from Bangalore

. We breath in winter breath out color, making the world. Memory is not invented until we touch it.

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Progress and paralysis

“What paralyzes life is lack of faith and lack of audacity. The difficulty lies not in solving problems but in expressing them. And so we cannot avoid this conclusion: it is biologically evident that to gain control of passion and … Continue reading

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Children, food, discipline, strangers

I understand why this woman is annoyed, with me or with her child, or with both of us. She bought the kid the stick of candy he was whining for, and now he turns away, no gratitude. She lifts her … Continue reading

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Thrity Umrigar

“This body that we occupy, that we have worn like a coat from the moment of our birth – from before birth, even – is still a stranger to us. After all, almost everything we do in our lives is … Continue reading

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The Challenges of Vegetarianism

This woman and her children sat at the next table in a vegetarian restaurant in Kelambakkam, Tamil Nadu. I went in because it was clean, cheap, and authentically local. They were perhaps followers of the guru who ran the restaurant, … Continue reading

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Child of India

“Tomorrow. The word hangs in the air for a moment, both a promise and a threat. Then it floats away like a paper boat, taken from her by the water licking at her ankles.” ― Thrity Umrigar

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Flower sellers, Bangalore market, India

In many surveys India ranks among the top five nations in happiness. The World Values Surveys reports that “in several of these countries— India, Ireland, Mexico, Puerto Rico and South Korea—there are steeply rising trends” for 1990-2008. And while Indians … Continue reading

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Bangalore, two girls in a tree, 2005

One head, but two pair of feet, if you look closely. I saw the brilliant sari from 100 yards. This park was the only thing to do in town, aside from the wonderful market. I carried my bigger camera at … Continue reading

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Mumbai, India, 2005, men scraping a boat for repainting, in the Bay

When we think of India and low-cost labor, most of us think of call centers and perhaps rote computer coding and accounting. But those are actually upper-middle class professions there. The real cheap labor, which includes Dalit women, digs ditches … Continue reading

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