|Pashupatinath on the Bagmati River in Kathmandu - Bob Ray photo|
TERZA RIMA TRIAL
A poem has bubbled up from my visit to Nepal last year at just this time. In Kathmandu, we visited Pashupatinath, the most scared Hindu temple, where we were only allowed outside. It was the first time we had witnessed cremation, which takes place around the clock on the banks of the sacred Bagmati River. It was a somber experience and Bob tried to be sensitive with his photography.
My first poetic attempt was in free verse. Yesterday I tried it in a form completely new to me. At first I got the rhyme scheme wrong and had to go back and fiddle with the lines, so I think some parts seem forced. And I think it came out in tetrameter, not pentameter, but maybe that’s okay.
So I’m sharing my draft of my first Terza Rima which I read about in J. Patrick Lewis’s Poetry Calisthenics, posted on Poetry at Play, and further researched on Poets.org. Feel free to comment, help me out, make suggestions. I’d love your feedback.
Thanks to Mary Lee who is hosting the Roundup today at A Year of Reading.
|Cremation pyre - Bob Ray photo|
On the shore above Bagmati
Shrouded bodies rest on stone pyres.
Monkeys chatter a litany.
Kindling smokes into flame and fire,
crackling like a snappy chorus
decked out in marigold attire.
I have known cremation minus
incense or wood smoke in the wind.
My dear ones’ ashes knew no fuss.
They have joined the soil or commend
themselves to dance with ship’s bows.
We’ll meet and mingle in the end,
because now your temple allows
no beef eaters, although my God
was first warmed by the breath of cows.
~ Joyce Ray - All Rights Reserved