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The ant's prayer

I was an empty riverbed uncut stone and haphazard rock
I was paper crumpled and creased
A tree with hunched shoulders and anemic roots.
Coursing through my veins angry wars and confused seahorses
Rusting shipwrecks and unclaimed treasure.

You were the water chilled and distilled

Stolen when the yeti slept,
Polishing pliant stone and directing the rocks
To territory chartered and boundaries defined.

I have known the childish excitement of a wakened river
I have tasted nirvana papered apricots
And grown taller in your shadow.
Where, once, I was a guardian of wasps,
I have become a farmer of butterflies.

You are the watermark on my ricepaper soul
The dateline of my wayward mind
And the sextant
Charting proximity
To my monocled God.

New migrant
It was not escape and it was not freedom
the pouch of stemcells unnoticed at customs
my currency of negotiation
I was oppressed and an oppressor
tetrapack crumpled emotions
dustbinned and years later
recycled I no longer bartered
my expertise for reward
my morality was not tax deductible and
my love had no caveats
undirected and scattered on soil that was not mapped
unexpecting and receiving
more than I deserved I finally
learnt to measure in sensations.

The ant's prayer
Ants firewalking over breathless stones
Burntcherry blur scurrying into labyrinths
As Angels of innocence cast
Imperfect shadows
God idioms are intoned
As morning ablutions
Disciples invoking pacts of compromise
Offering souls and solutions
Silent in their conspiracy
A shortcut to Nirvana
In dredged tantric mud. 

PoetVina Verma is a Sydney poet and an accredited journalist with Cricket Australia. He has had three volumes of poetry published in India by the Poetry Guild and Writers Workshop, and authored Kapil Dev's Biography, By God's Decree. He has written for Inside Sport, Inside Cricket, the Adelaide Advertiser and Daily News and Analysis, Mumbai.


Topic tags: new australian poems, vina verma, watermark, new migrant, the ant's prayer



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