a garland of words
eulogized by occidental cosmologists today
to deify the milky way
for five millennia,
in clandestine chambers of
the temple of the lord with a lotus navel,
oriental sages, finely tuned into
ultimate mantras of the cosmos,
initiated ‘twice born’ namboodris of kerala
into a mellifluous sanskrit verse....
a potent heart melting hymn
where our star-studded galaxy,
milky in complexion,
is seen as a spinning jagged-edged discus,
worn as an ornamental ring
around vishnu’s slender index finger,
from whose whirling lotus navel
the birth of inseparable twins:
warped space intertwined with flowing time
now this is a garland of exquisite beauty!
vishnu: the all pervading one
namboodris: a sect of brahmins from kerala
Brahma, Vishnu, Shiva -
sit eternally on lotuses.
Shiva loves to destroy the universe.
He has as many arms as it takes.
Plus one, to hold a mirror.
Brahma rebuilds it all as needed.
He has four heads and four arms.
That seems about right.
Sitting between Big Bang and Big Finish
is blue Vishnu,
who symbolizes energy.
Iris and Murray Klughart of Yonkers
don't symbolize anything.
Neither do their children.
All their marriage the Klugharts have saved
for a trip to the Taj Mahal.
Each one secretly fears
the other will be disappointed.
They pray their kids will have more.
Iris lights up the place when anyone calls.
Murray lights up a dreadful cigar,
sits back like a living room ornithologist,
and fully hears her song.
The creature is in full cackle.
He'll tell her about his bad MRI -
They are no one,
and their aching backs
prop up every axis,
and out-of-work deity.
Iris cries when she reads Emily Dickinson.
Iris laughs in her sleep.
The Klugharts loved the Taj so much,
Shiva dropped his mirror.
(originally published in Red River Review.)
Jack Ritter www.houseofwords.com
— The End —