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Sunday, 6 March 2011

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A warning Cry

I was created by God almighty
In seven days only
He left me not lonely
He created unbounded beauty
He created Adam
He created Eve
God said inherit
They caused to sin
and they did multiply

They did care for me
I know they did
Thousands of years
Have just gone by
Time has ticked away
Neglected by humans
Ignorantly or unjustly
Only you would know

I now make my plea
As nature unfolds
Disasters untold
Climate changes around you
Can never be foretold
What have you done
I cry out in pain
Nevertheless in vain
Is there a reason
I don't understand

I cradle you in my belly
From the day you see light
from the heavens above
That makes the world look bright
Is this the reason you do not care

I cradle you once again
Ever so tightly than before
When your last breath
Is gone away
And there is nothing left to say

No one to protect you
But I will take care of you
From swirling winds
Thunder storms and fierce battles
Of raging weather changes
Even though you do not know
All I ask when life is yours
For gratitude and not destruction
I give you so much pleasure
For your eyes to see
And hands to touch
Because I know it means so much

It's depressing to know
I go unnoticed
It's as though
I am unworthy

I carry the ocean
A million miles over
Lulling ships
That travel the world over
You dump waste and make me not at rest
By destroying fish and nature

It's not a time to slumber anymore
"Feel it!" I tend to gravitate
Even though you do not know
Cast your eyes
And cast your deeds
With reverence for me

For I shall not hold back
But unfold
Misery untold

I cry out to you
As mother earth
Sending signals
By shaking the earth

Start fretting
And start sighing
Because God is watching
And so am I

Dilrukshi De Silva

The poet laments over the wanton destruction of nature and the environment pollution which have threatened the very existence of life on the earth. It is the earth speaking and cries and says that God has created it and it has been providing all what is necessary to sustain life. But human begin to destroy the environment causing climate change and unprecedented natural disasters like earthquakes, floods and prolonged droughts. The poet has skilfully personified the earth as if the earth tells its woeful story.


The romance of trees!

When old earth heaves herself slowly
Glorious time beckon
When land emerged from frozen water,
Repetition of summer begin
As catkins of willow burst forth
The Dawn of life heralds ...

The valley of seeding sprout
And spread the emeralds to lowlands
Mingle and seep the watery falls,
As nature resumes her miracles,
Recapitulate the urgency
Of geological summer mystery ...

Amidst the purple ridged mountains
Besides the playful streams
Shines a spell of golden sun,
On hillocks of exotic blooms
Of coral pink and shimmering white
And retrace a valley of charming trees ...

Wood anemones spread the leaf
And open the fragile bud!
Draws me deeper into mysteries
On nature's stream of life
And I breathe the air of subtle scent
When the valley of trees romance...

Awake! the season of myriad splashes
When white is white and colours are bright
Sun-kissed leaves atop the spreading bough
Shrouds the unfurling, blushing buds,
Of silky lustrous million petals,
That makes the sparking trees...

As summer warms the fruits of life,
Of life so pristine and pure
And bewitching tapestry of tangling vines,
Vines of fragrance love
And my heart fills in the wonders
Of laughing, romancing trees

Gwen Herat

In this narrative poem, the poet skilfully portrays summer and the abundance of life it brings about. As the snow melts down the maiden land emerges into the dawn of summer with bathing sunlight. From the waterways, trees and vines seem to have rejuvenated. The poet perceives this natural phenomenon as the romance of the trees. The poet's power of imagination and the use of apt metaphors reminds of Wordsworth's 'Daffodils' and the 'cosmic dance' and John Keats's 'Ode to Autumn' albeit the poem is about summer. The poem is noted for its brilliant crafting and stands out as one of the best poems by a Sri Lankan poet in English.


Misinterpretation

Is it a goodbye
You're trying to improvise,
To evacuating me
From your heart's deluxe room?
I thought it was my place-
A haven for someone displaced,
At the end of each new race,
Where I found solace and comfort in place.
A fast shut door for years,
Unlocked with a once lost key;
Barring the ruthless thieves,
Who stole happiness from me.
Yet, how mistaken I was!
A tenant I seem to have been,
Of an abandoned room-
given out of pity,
For the cost of ten years of loyalty.

G.C.Priyangwada Perera

The poem is about a girl who has been betrayed by her lover. At the end, the lover bids goodbye simply to expel her from his world. After ten years of courtship, she realised that his heart which she compares to a luxury room was given to her out of pity and that she was only a tenant. The entire affair is a misinterpretation. The poet has used simple diction and is noted for its skilful crafting.


I am still here

I am still here like a moving wind
drooping, fading, and mixing
like thick air after a hurricane.

I am still here trying to mend
breathing fresh air;
with no pollens and fumes of million cars
building walls on the banks of the Swan River.

I am still here hiding in my City of Light
searching for my lost children
like a grieving refugee,
in a detention centre.

I am still here trying to sing my songs
hiding among the winds and
Looking for my stolen words

somewhere during my journey.

I am still here finding my path
on the banks of the Swan River
nestling amongst the black swans
Having seen white swans
in my other home
across the Mute Indian Ocean.

I am still here trying to reach the
Rainbow Serpent in Dreaming
through my diminutive walks
across this vast Noongar land.

I am still here
hiding behind white walls
until you hear my words of clatter
as my own lyrics for a song
carrying stories of my journey
across the Mute Indian Ocean.

(19 February 2011)

Sunil Govinnage
Perth, Western Australia

Dreaming -Aboriginal 'Dreaming' (stories) carry the "truth" from the past, together with their codes of Law. 'Dreaming' is also often used to refer to an individual's or group's set of beliefs or spirituality. Dreaming stories vary throughout Australia, with variations on the same theme.

Rainbow Serpent -The Noongar people believe the Waagle, or Rainbow Serpent, dominated the earth and the sky creating waterways and people.

Noongar Country-The vast space which used to be the name given to the land across and beyond Perth's Swan River spreading as far as to the Southwest Australia.

This narrative poem represents the feelings of alienation and melancholia in the midst of strong desire to have his own identity and the voice of a poet living in a far away land who is "nestling amongst black swans having seen white swans" in his native country. It is also ironical that the poet is "hiding behind white walls" alluding to writing in English leaving behind a language which is 2500 years old.The poet develops his message effectively utilising words from another (Aboriginal) culture suggesting symbols such as Rainbow Serpent, Dreaming and Noongar Land which used to be the name of the land across and beyond Perth's Swan River going as far as to the Southwest Australia. This poem also could be considered as an experimental poem.


The mercenary

I am Death for sale.
Tell me who to kill
And I will kill for you.
Show me what to fight
And I will fight for you.
These notes, these coins
This is my price;
This is what my life is worth.
You speak of cost?
Consider:
You have lots of money
But I have only one life.
But yes.
I will kill for you
I will die for you.
And you will pay the piper;
I am Death
For sale.

- Yudhanjaya Wijeratne

The poem is about mercenaries whose duty is to fight for money. The poet interprets the service of mercenaries as death for sale. So the price is for the kill. What mercenary soldier has is only his life. But he sacrifices it for money.

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