Monday, May 25, 2009

Deer Park, Bir

District Kangra
tea country.

from the roof 
panoramic valley views at sunset

here one gets just a tease of the Himalayas
we got fresh snow in the mountains yesterday
its May.

but the rivers are dry
choked by the heat
and the heap of plastic bottles
biscuit wrappers 

some afternoons
thunder storms blow through
intense, urgent in their will 
to unravel
the most stoic flagpoles

as i walk to the town from deer park
chirping birds give way 
to barking dogs
to honking taxis
to trucks rumbling thru
with daily loads of rocks
from the river

it is saka dawa
one of the holiest months in the buddhist calendar
and the whirring of large prayer wheels
chants and the tinkling of tea cups
permeates the tibetan settlement community center.

it is believed this month
the merit of good deeds are
multiplied many thousands of times.

(Pictured: Deer Park temple, a detail from one of the murals at Dzongsar Institute in Chauntra, Geeti and I for a walk down to the river, and the mani stones at Chokling Monastery.)

Saturday, May 16, 2009


the wind. it hit me like the voice of a familiar friend,
sending me back
to joys 
long lost 
past the memory of chili.

this place is music in the form
of spice
infiltrating the air
almost indistinguishable from dust
simmering in the sunlight
songs and thuds from taut
laughter in the morning
bare feet 

this place is music in the form
of prayer
praising the dawn
almost indistinguishable from birdsong
calling to life the wake
of children
sailing past fragrances
sweetly drifting
yellow boughs