What He Said to His Charioteer, on His Way Back

Akananuru 134

Rains in season,
forests grow beautiful.
Black pregnant clouds
bring the monsoons, and stay.
Between flower and blue-gem
flower on the bilberry tree
the red-backed moths multiply,
and fallen jasmines
cover the ground.
It looks like
a skilled man's work of art,
this jasmine country.

Friend, drive softly here.
Put aside the whip for now.
Slow down
these leaping pairs of legs,
these majestic horses
galloping in style
as if to music.

Think of the stag, his twisted antlers

like banana stems
after the clustering bud
and the one big blossom
have dropped,

think of the lovely bamboo-legged doe
ready in desire:

if they hear the clatter
of horse and chariot,
how can they mate
at their usual dead of night?
Author of original: 
Cittalai Cattanar
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