Sunday Morning Beggars at Puri

by Bibhu Padhi (December 2015)


I become a mother, a father,

a mistress, a master.

 

The calls get louder, then

turn into shouts at

 

no one in particular, perhaps

meant only for the sky

 

and the gods and goddesses

who might not be here.

 

The early morning air trembles

with weekly sounds,

 

settles into an uneasy peace,

bruised with the colours

 

of sharp, throaty voices

that cut across its rest

 

and sleep, rush into

its long, eloquent dreams.

 

Lying on the sofa, I think of

the numerous other voices

 

that have chosen not to disturb

our Sunday sleep,

 

maintaining their sounds

for death’s no-sound zone,

 

listening to an interior speech

that I may not hear,

 

is lost deliberately.

What has happened to their

 

ability to speak, to ask for things

we may not own, their

 

simple questions that will not

find an answer in a world

 

of common things?

Perhaps they alone

 

know the answer

but would not speak.

 

___________________________

 

Bibhu Padhi's tenth book of poems, Midnight Diary, has just been published. He lives with his family in Bhubaneswar, India.

 

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