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I return to the brick kiln two years later. The place has changed beyond recognition. The bridge has disappered. The island has disappeared in the rising river. But the kiln is still there. The same infernal machination of back-breaking labor. The same wooden expression in the face of men and women trudging from one end to the other, bearing loads of brick and collecting a token for every load. Children, male and female, hardly ten years old, toiling under the relentless sun. Now at least there is a dry wind, a wind that blows moister off the laboring skin, but a wind that whips up the dust and covers all in a layer of fine silt. The men and women have the look of utter resignation in their faces. They hardly look at me. They move with robot-like precision. Some are probably bonded, trying to pay off an old debt. I am reminded of a Bergman film. There is silence when he broke open the seventh seal. Why is there silence in heaven? How long will this silence last. What is the space of a half hour in human time?
No one laughs at the silence but this one child.

[I saw in the newspaper later that the same day a group of social workers had rescued a few bonded laborers from a nearby brik kiln, though not this one]

[Tri-X exposed at 100 ASA, pull-processed by 1.5 stops]

don_narayan, arnabchat, bnallama, partha, KevRyan, chc, Mistral, kajspice, neelkaak heeft deze opmerking als nuttig gemarkeerd

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Additional Photos by Animesh Ray (AnimeshRay) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 689 W: 44 N: 846] (9089)
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