Cultural Insights

These gentle folks of hearty laughter and endless mirth
Gather this crispy autumn morning of fresh birth
To once again share their lives together in a feast
Celebrating life and companions returned to the East

Simmering in a giant Longpi clay pot mysterious as night
An abundance of Raphei chilli powder for a stinging bite
Head, tails and all, a haohok, the centerpiece in today’s bill of fare
Bubbles without much fuss except for precious care

Enveloped by smoke from the damp reluctant firewood
One stirs the gurgling pot then rearranges the wood
Another comments to add more salt and chilli powder
Others pour more khor and soon the songs become louder

On plantain leaves laid out in a row the food is finally served
These joyous folks finally sit down for a meal well deserved
A few eat in a yamkok quipping how a serving will not suffice
And digs into thick blood-browned gravy ladled upon steaming rice

Now these sated folks of gentle persuasion and simple pleasures
Round the bonfire they sit and sing of spirits and forgotten treasures
Swiftly daylight turns into dusk and the fire slowly wanes
Farewells are finally said and each walk into the night that remains


Written by Chingya Luithui



Longpi is a village famous for its black pottery

Raphei is the Northern Tangkhul region

Khor is an indigenous drink brewed from rice

Yamkok is the big cane plates used for husking rice


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