The Blog of Cafe Dissensus Magazine – we DISSENT

Two Poems

Painting: Laura Pentzin

By Tikuli

Crossing the Threshold 

in the half light of dawn the breeze –
laden with the scent of mango blossom –
drifts in from the courtyard,
calling her thoughts to the waiting river;
quietly she leaves her bed,
gathers her unkempt hair in a loose bun
then pauses for a moment,
listens to her husband’s measured breathing,
then silently tiptoes out,
tucking in the corner of her sari at the waist
she hastily collects the fallen Parijatak in her pallu
placing a few in her hair at the same time,
the red from their stalks rising to her cheeks;
beside the well the empty pitchers wait,
nearby the battered clay stove
recalls her own scars,
for a split second she wavers, then crosses
the threshold, her heart frantic with haste,
leaving behind the walls
that had risen around her brick by brick;
the river hears her hurried footsteps
with rapt attention, at its bend
under the shade of the mangroves,
a boat and a promise patiently wait
ready to carry her away.

*** 

The Convergence

she stands among the ancient trees,
hair fluttering protestingly over her full breasts,
strings of beads resting around her neck,
draped in red cotton her dark skin glistening in sweat,
her kohl eyes like fiery embers,
a sliver of sun on her forehead,
behind her, smeared in symbolic vermilion,
the Goddess sits cross-legged,
leaning against the matted roots of a tree,
defiant, wise, independent,
the power stemming from her womb,
non-conformist, non-submissive.
from a quiet corner I watch them,
fierce, unapologetic; both born of the soil,
somewhere beyond the hills a river turns red,
an embodiment of the eternal truth –
sa’ham asmi
the Aashad clouds gather
beating their ancient drums
as the earth receives its first rain

Bio:
Tikuli is a blogger and author from Delhi. Her short stories and poems have appeared in print and in online literary magazines including Le Zaparougue, MiCROW 8, The Smoking Book (Poets Wear Prada Press, US), Life And legends, Levure Littéraire 10, The Enchanting Verses Literary Review, Open Road Review, Cafe Dissensus, Mnemosyne Literary Journal, Women’s Web, Readomania and Troubadour21. Tikuli’s print publications include poems in Guntur National Poetry Festival Anthology, Melange – a Potpourri of thoughts and the much acclaimedChicken Soup For The Indian Romantic Soul (Westland). Her debut poetry book, Collection Of Chaos, was published in 2014 by Leaky Boot Press. She blogs at tikulicious.wordpress.com.

***

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Cafe Dissensus Everyday is the blog of Cafe Dissensus magazine, based in New York City, USA. All materials on the site are protected under Creative Commons License.

***

Read the latest issue of Cafe Dissensus Magazine on ‘Women as the ‘displaced’: The context of South Asia’, edited by Suranjana Choudhury, academic and Nabanita Sengupta, academic, India.

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