Wednesday 30 March 2011

Krishnadeva's Lament

O Saluva Timma, Mahamandaleshwara!
Should I ever have trusted you, you who were to me
As great and glorious as the Lord Venkateshwara?

When your dying king bid you blind his infant brother
You deceived him with goat's eyes, what evil treachery,
Saluva Timma, Mahamandaleshwara!

You saved me, you crowned this Krishnadeva emperor
And hold all the Coromandel as your demesne
As great and glorious as the Lord Venkateshwara?

My wealth, my victories, my imperial demeanour
I lay them all at your feet, if you would but ask me.
Saluva Timma, Mahamandaleshwara!

But now my son is poisoned; you stand charged with murder.
If it were proven true, how could you stand before me
As great and glorious as the Lord Venkateshwara?

The law says to blind you, whom I loved as a father
You who gave me glory, will you bear this infamy
Saluva Timma, Mahamandaleshwara,
As great and glorious as the Lord Venkateshwara?

Saluva Timma, Mahamandaleshwara

Saluva Timma, Mahamandaleshwara
Shall I tell the story of how you came to be
Blind beggar at the shrine of Venkateshwara?

When your dying king bid you blind his young brother
You deceived him with goat's eyes, what vile treachery!
Saluva Timma, Mahamandaleshwara!

You who crowned Krishnadevaraya emperor
With all the Coromandel as your demesne
Blind beggar at the shrine of Venkateshwara!

The king's son was poisoned; he charged you for murder.
He put out your eyes and granted you no mercy -
Saluva Timma, Mahamandaleshwara!

The truth was discovered, you regained your honour
He sought to atone and restore you to glory -
Blind beggar at the shrine of Venkateshwara.

Beware a kings' whims and all his behaviour:
Let that be what we learn from this tragic story.
Saluva Timma, Mahamandaleshwara
Blind beggar at the shrine of Venkateshwara.

Tuesday 15 March 2011

My name is Milo Minderbender

Power struggles at home
beta male snapping at the top dog;

Gazing at Midday mates
perhaps a little less than the norm
lingering perhaps a little longer
at ads for male underwear;

Celebrating small triumphs with mousse
and crying into pillows for being a nobody;

Wondering every morning
whether to shave myself
or let the razor cut the jugular;

Waking early for exercise
but not before checking email;

Wild mood swings between vinaigrette salad
and cheese masala sandwich;

Reading the Dhammapada while failing at trying
not to think of a Canon Powershot SX 30;

And a serious desire to poison a puppy-poisoner.

My name is Milo Minderbender.
I am thirty years old.

Saturday 12 March 2011


'Who poisoned my boy? Who poisoned my boy?'
She goes around asking everyone.
In her arms the rigid corpse of her son,
Paralysed arms still clutching his last toy.
Hollow glassy eyes stripped naked of joy
Relentlessly repeating their question.
Answers to which she bore on her person -
Her own guilt that madness will not destroy.

Pieces of bread soaked in insecticide
She fed the puppies with great tenderness.
'They'll infect my child' she smilingly said
To the tail-wagging bitch who stood beside.
'Lest he get some incurable illness,
'Tis best I kill off your children instead.'

Tuesday 8 March 2011

The green dot of guilt

That green dot is so full of guilt
and indecision
should I
should I not
will she rake up the past
has she moved on
should I say hi
dare I say hi
should I
should I not
is it guilt
or fear
or remorse
or loathing
for her
or for myself?

Friday 4 March 2011

Two soldiers

Purple satin cushions blemished with blood;
Likewise the golden cup crusted with gore;
Velvet carpeting disfigured with mud;
Crystal chandeliers that tinkle no more.
Amidst all he lay – his body putrid –
Chevrons proclaiming: base common soldier.
Crawling with maggots, in his neck buried:
A golden dagger, prize for his valour.

Tha sabre that cut him was now at last
Ornamented — with noble blood drying;
Wailing and gasping for glories now past,
Thrashing in gloom the marshal lay dying.
One among hundreds with no pomp or show,
His medallioned breast still outshone the snow.

Thursday 3 March 2011

To S

A neuron fires: his thick glasses come into view;
A synapse transmits: his silly laughter rings out;
Axon meets dendrite: that's me learning something new,
For now there's lots of him I yearn to know about.

Currents so tiny they cannot even be felt
Overwhelm me - his awkward grace, his gleeful smile;
He's not there
yet he's seen, he's held, he's touched, he's smelt.
The circuit loops on - it's him, him, him all the while.

The sight of him trigger's my brain's reward pathway
In ways that chocolate or alcohol will not
Anymore; my survival instincts shooed away
As he seems to take over every nerve I've got.

The heartbeat rises as enlightenment kicks in:
It's love's electrostatic torrent that I'm in.


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