Sunday, April 17, 2011

Actors, Peacocks and Poets

Pablo and Czeslaw
In their chessboard game
And kissed the cosmic atoms on their feet

By saying
They are better than me in every regard
I know Vinda
And they do not

Yellow Back Sunbird
The Peacock
Taking tiny steps
Twirling it's feathers
Trying to attract my attention

It didn't know
That the Peacock
Was exhausted
By the constant preening, daily wooings

How the Peacock wished
He could be a Yellow Back Sunbird
For one rainy day

She didn't know how to explain to her 12-year old daughter
That the two ugly boils which were multiplying on her chest
Weren't a curse

The bigger the boil
The lesser the dowry
Her unemployed father would have to pay

Very bleak
Too damn comfortable
So damnably easy
Muttered the thespian
Staring into his lucky mirror
After a thousand and one perfect shows

He knew
What to do
Press one button
They sighed or groaned
Another button
They gushed and roared

They even applauded his pregnant pauses
Shouting encore
Analysing his famous silence on their journey home

And yet
He despaired
He peeled off his wig
What new role?
He wiped off the foundation cream
What new method?

While he gargled
His acting muse bid adieu

The Thespian would falter

Day after
A blur
He would forget lines

In one year
It would be splutter, stammer, stutter
Commas, semi colons, hyphens, full stops
Until finally
There was nothing

He sat in his balcony
Feeding sparrows along with his grand-daughter
They surveyed the cityscape
Reveling in the infinite silence
Which he had sort of perfected

That's when his grand-daughter said: "Say something, na?
You're always so quiet, dada."

Warplanes in the sky
Tiny boats drowning
Someplace, somewhere the government takes big decisions
That matter to no one

She who knows nothing
Brushes her hair
On the shore
Orders a platter of fresh fish

She is surrounded by kittens
Who can sense that the next three day's meals are taken care of

Every full moon night
The goddess of eternal abstinence
Waits for the
Virile long-haired boy
And the older girl
To make love
In front of her stone idol
In the 12th century temple

The next morning
When the priest
Washes the floor with coconut milk
Lights a lamp and decorates her with kadamba flowers
She runs out of the sanctum santorum
Totally nude
And dives into the temple tank
To soothe her passions

In the summer night
The rain
Did its pitter-patter

On cue
Hundreds of peacocks did their dance
For the benefit of the ladies
Were suitably unimpressed
As they had been
For eons

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Not in vain, these references to the peacock. Re P. and the Yellow Sunbird- what oft is thought but ne'er so well express'd.