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Who would milk the Tigress

Who would milk the Tigress wears no armour gasmask pail within squat thighs nor bloodless forefinger and thumb Cows wear forlorn looks distressed mien trailing tarred roadmap streaks dry udder tears for lost stripes after mynas taken to the hills forever abandon torrid flatlands to the reverberating mockery of magpies splintered limbs split podiyal torn fiber ribs jut through mortar-upturned tarmac signposts to a lost bickering Peninsula and island children Adam’s Bridge of Hanuman hordes loping to reclaim Sita ghost-towns where once-fenced-in palmleaf thatched huts in mud-caked villages husbanded grain the unswaying palmyra droops with juice heavy nongku the tiger cub teen thrust up in sepoy bayonet salutes thrusts her unsung virtue down blind plunge in backgarden well a warrior race of she-cats buried deep behind kitchen smoke Those who came to milk the cow and drink peace eat with hands besplurged with menstrual-blood Where has the milkmaid gone her pail half filled with her brother’s blood The wombs of Purananuru mothers long dry bleed for their sons untethered tigers longgone from lairs their stripes for flags Is there a Mughal in Delhi fears a Sivaji in Jaffna or the ageing monarch in Colombo his Nizam-ul-mulk in Trincomalee who would have gladly traded his throne to an armourless English captain armed to The Buddha’s Tooth Would a Muhammad Shah prepare for the coming of a Nadir Shah from the far fastnesses of The Middle Kingdom Whose no-man’s-land would skirt the Tiger-lined jungle trails see stripes wavering at the cluck of each rubber fruit Who would then growl to remind us of thunder of righteous anger of wayward peoples trekking for elbow space under the hardy palmyra with only the nongku to slake sterile trampled soil miles and miles of heaving padi-fields wreathed in fatigues the lone lithe tigress licking her paw sweet Resources The historical references hark back to the events preceding the gradual rise under Jehangir’s reign and final collapse of the great Mughal Empire: 1739-54 to 1858 in the Indo-Lanka context. Other references draw on the Sanskrit epic: Ramayana in the Indo-Lanka context. -From the privately pub. coll. (re-worked: 2016): longhand notes (a binding of poems), 1999, 115p. © T. Wignesan – Paris, 2016

Copyright © | Year Posted 2016

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Date: 1/29/2016 1:34:00 AM
The imagery is amazing. A well researched and layered piece. I really enjoyed reading this. SuZ
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T Wignesan
Date: 1/29/2016 4:19:00 AM
Morning, Su ! What can I add after that! Except to say, thank you from the bottom of the hearts of sturdy teenaged girls who took the tiger trail and whose bodies long litter ground sans signposts, girls whose callow bones lie trampled oblivious to the male cause they had no means of controlling - the so-called leaders! Great 2016! Every good wish.