Posts Tagged ‘India’

In the course of a conversation, yesterday, I made a comment regarding an experience from my childhood, that I would visit the zoo some distance from my school, each day, and spend my lunch period there with a tiger.  A gift from India (now the largest democratic nation in the world), the rare, white Bengal tiger came to our country as a gift to the children of America though the combined work of the Maharaja of Rewa, John Kluge (a German-American billionaire), India’s Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru, U. S. President Dwight David Eisenhower, and many others whose names I do not know.  I felt challenged to write a poem (see below) that would be simple, yet, confident, and would express somewhat the spirit in me as a ten-year-old boy.  I hesitated to use rhymed couplets (they often sour, sound silly, and become sing-song), however, I could not dismiss their demand for both restraint and understatement.

 

 

 

When Talking to the Tiger
[A Poem Recalling the Daughter of Mohan:
Mohini (Enchantress), the Princess of Rewa]

 

It would be rude to start or say
Please don’t eat me up, today

I only came to sit a spell
To visit and make sure you’re well

I know its hard, so far from home
Fenced in and caged so you won’t roam

Imagine what a fright there’d be
If you had come to visit me

We need not rush…yet I can’t stay
They give us only time to play

Or eat a lunch we have to bring
And, truth is, I don’t have a thing

Yours must be a careful diet
One that keeps you strong and quiet

Mine I get from GOD above
And so my meals are mostly love

As we get closer we can share
Our feelings and our thoughts as prayer

White tiger’s wisdom, and the claw
Can feed with me on sacred law

And I may learn in this your school
The way to wear my crown, and rule

Once we are free of all our fears
We’ll wipe away each others tears

I’ll brush your stripes with gentle touch
And we won’t have to cry so much

The stripes of poverty are the same
No matter what the country’s name

Our city is a jungle too
And dangers lurk outside this zoo

The stripes of poverty we bear
Have been the same, both here and there

No less than life’s diversity
That yolks us in humility

The gift to Adam, Noah too
That now is given me and you

Thereby the heirs of kings are taught
That freedom is not cheaply bought

Soon all the creatures living here
Will know our covenant is clear

That Michael’s heart is now your throne
Princess Mohini’s not alone

Should night come and you feel a chill
Just think of me as with you still

For in the dark you’ll hear me sing
The boy whose father is the King.

 

Signature Mark

©Michael Andrew Williams, 2014.  All rights reserved.

 

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