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Thursday, October 16, 2008

GODDESS, Rewrite



The first time I saw you.
It was in a remote world;
It was years ago.

You, yourself, were in a niche, manifest,
In a Hindu temple, a marble figure,
With your eyes carved wide-open.
You were adorned in regal, pageant gown,
Dyed scarlet; gold thread woven within it
Made you shimmer in the flickering candle light;
I noticed your eyes were painted violet.

Your right arm, it protruded direct, out
From the shoulder, it was bent right angle
At the elbow, it had a barely clenched fist atop,
And from your fist a thumb extended
Straight up perpendicular to your head,
Its signal was unmistakable, providential,
It portended good luck, ‘thumb’s up’.

Brass bowls of red-hot coals burned
Perfumed joss sticks at your feet.

Your supplicants cued from portal to portal arch,
They humbly awaited chance to implore good fortune.

And they carried on polished metal trays
Oblations of fresh-cut flowers and I remember seeing
Strings of marigolds, cluster upon cluster of pompons,
And with them bunches of large lotus flowers.

They offered all kind of fruit.
There were bananas, coconuts, and pomegranates.

All was splashed with bright vermilion powder,
As if to inform the procession,
To remind those petitioners that once,
That once, it was not so long ago,
Blood had sanctified the sacrifice.

And me, I await, patient.
I am just another mortal, who prays for favor,
Hope to tease meaning from your stare,
I desire, I wish for you to bless me,

My eyes are locked,
They dwell upon your motionless and painted face.

I hear drums tap out devotional rhythm,
And through the distance a din of flutes and whistles,
Singers repeat your name to accent your ascendancy.
Oh! How deep the people’s love and ardor.

I go deep within my pocket, pull
Wrapped, hard candies, add them to my tray of gifts,
And excitedly show the temple priests,
I wear appropriate raiment. I tell them

My nostrils detect your mango fragrance!

And in the clamor, coming up, almost inaudible,
Against the background noises of the street,
I believe I hear your coded parlance,
'I miss you'. You tell me, you miss me.

I am on my knees, I plea,

Goddess, Love, grant me the serenity
To accept the long absence
Before you are flesh in my arms again,

The courage to change those things about me
So better to pray and be proper devotee,

And the wisdom to remain faithfully yours,
To be yours and yours alone, today, tomorrow,
Whatever obstacles may bar the way,
Stay a course steadfast and loyal, fervently always.

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