In the glittering temple of our village
the golden lingam sat as a magical mountain.
My father advanced, focused, but poured
the milk, thinking of the many starving children.
And murmuring, murmured a faint prayer.
Mother bowed worshipfully; with soft fingers
she dropped a datura before Shiva's emblem.
My little brother came, with bright eyes.
He tossed fragrant flowers on the stone.
Then I, and my wife too, came near in awe.
No one was really looking at us:
I saw Shiva, purple, powerful, and so real.
I smiled, sought His blessing, retreated, and
went out with many old sounds in my soul.
If you are a big perch,
I am just a little bird.
If you are real,
I have so many wild dreams.
If you are brown,
I have borrowed rainbow colors.
If you know many songs,
I am yet to learn singing.
If your flowers are always pink
I like all that's blue.
If your leaves love suicide
my feathers hatch fidelity.
If you are a swing
I'd love to swing a lifetime
and let the big gust
blow on, and on, and on.
Amit Parmessur owns interesting pots of flowers, especially purple. His work has appeared in journals like Transcendence, Mused and Aphelion. His dream is to catch a flying fish.