Iowa Writes

Durga Puja

Last year . . .
shiuli hadn't blossomed
in my courtyard;
yet the dhak's staccato beat
echoed like a mother
calling her lost child;
how could I resist that call?
So I went—
with the priest's chant
filling the void
between my emptiness
and somber divinity.
Today . . .
I've seen
the first shiuli blossom
in my courtyard,
shimmering with dewdrops,
shy to be the first flower
of kartik.
The unmindful wind
prances across the kash fields
and whispers
through my open window;
do I hear from afar
the celestial notes
of jingling anklets on her lotus feet?

About Iowa Writes

Since 2006, Iowa Writes has featured the work of Iowa-identified writers (whether they have Iowa roots or live here now) and work published by Iowa journals and publishers on The Daily Palette. Iowa Writes features poetry, fiction, or nonfiction twice a week on the Palette.

In November of 2008, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) designated Iowa City, Iowa, the world's third City of Literature, making the community part of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network.

Iowa City has joined Edinburgh, Scotland and Melbourne, Australia as UNESCO Cities of Literature.

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This poem originally appeared in Volume 5, Number 6 of 100 Words, a journal published by The University of Iowa's International Writing Program between 1993 and 1998. Each piece in the journal had to be 100 words or fewer, and each issue had a theme. This issue's theme was "On Garden."

This page was first displayed
on June 08, 2009

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