Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Not about spiders this time ... :)

This picture, of a vine growing on our backyard fence reminds me of one of my favourite poems - by Rajlakshmee Battacharya.

Punarnava

In some rainy month, did you decide
to climb up our lichened wall, to reach
the rusty tin-roof, transforming
its shabbiness into velvet-green,
to hang your emerald-pendants
around the neck of our home?

All knew the perennial Madhavilata,
the fragrant Hasnuhana, queen of the night,
they gaped when they saw you
running wild on our roof,
velvet-green, strange, unknown.
We shouted with glee, "It is Punonnoba -- Punarnava."

That you had medicinal properties ---
that your juice soothes and heals---
we never knew till the vaid
sent his servant,
a demon who expertly climbed our roof --
hacked away at its emerald-fringed coverlet !

Oh the despair and the hope---
the running out in soaking rain---
to watch you extending tendrils,
sprouting leaves,
growing in greenness--Punarnava--
eternal companion on the roof-top.

That home was left behind,
as birth-strings snapped.
A refugee, wanderer, I
look for you, but no one knows
your name. No one knows
a velvet-green, medicinal creeper.
Lost to me, Punarnava,
your shade, your cool decor,
your healing magic.

3 comments:

Raghav said...

What about the moonlight picture?

Deepa said...

wow, poetess, gardener, animal lover, environmentalist, statistician...!! :)

bindu said...

hey Deepa,
This isn't my poem - though I wish it was! The poetess is Rajalakshmee Bhattacharya - as I mentioned above the poem. I'm not confident enough to post my poems yet - maybe some time soon .. :)