Tuesday, September 22, 2009


I stood in awe at this temple this morning. The sheer complexity of all those stories. I've been walking around Chennai for more than a month now, have passed the Kapaleeswarar Temple many times on foot, bus and auto-rickshaw, but getting close was unexpectedly overwhelming. The little pink cows are lower down and you feel like patting them, I'll save them for another day.

Parvathi dp288
for Chris

Shiva is such a softy his temple is filled
with small pink cows with blunt golden
horns and a cheeky smile their mouths
also soft put your hand in feel it

like cows amid traffic these bovines
keep their cool five stories up on a ledge
surrounded by a world Hieronymus
Bosch might have conjured they graze on

all those people to judge all that grass to eat
there are dragons and elephants demons
and devas the judgemental and the forgiving
the flippant and the playful hooded cobras too

it’s Parvathi I’ve come to see dressed in red
her right hand raised in blessing I’ve come
with flowers of fruit hand them in hope
that Yama is too busy to notice me


  1. I notice that you don't use any punctuation in your poems. Does that signify something? I like the way you juxtapose different aspects: traffic, bovines, Greek mythology. Interesting because the poem is named 'Parvathi' but she is mentioned in only one stanza and that too as a passing reference.

  2. Re punctuation some do some don't. You just happen to be reading me in a time when most don't.