by Raju Peddada
(Swans - March 26, 2012)
The primal aura of ages,
from the dung & dirt, at dusk;
A rural theater, gift of a sage,
who's hearth, visit we must.
Education today: stagnant water,
daily toils, as the wisdom well;
Ancestors diligently gathered,
the maxims, on how to dwell.
Home, anchored by a Pipal tree,
the Tamarind & the Neem in hold;
A triumvirate shade, all of it free,
a hundred years, in blissful fold.
Their loving hearth,
lives only in the hearts & minds;
Ragolapalli: Aaah, that cuddle!
Their lair, many myths to find.
In matriarch's benevolent care,
festivities, blithefully staged;
Under grandfather's guiding stare,
ceremonies, got one made.
Ancient recipes, on wood fire,
delicious heritage, exquisite fare;
Ancient traditions, is it a mire?
In their court, anyone dare?
In the name of pious gaiety,
the village supped at dusk;
Dusty visitors ate heartily,
in total merriment, they bask.
Their augury: well of resource,
Everyone departed, fulfilled;
Providential blessings on course,
A wonder indeed, nothing billed.
Ancient souls, spirit a welcome,
to all of the descendents;
Lure of origins, for some,
in legends and stories to tend.
Somnolent leaves, in the day,
stir for conversations at night;
Arriving breeze, evenings of May,
leaves partying, simply outasight.
We lay in the dappled shade,
under the silvery lunar gaze;
Listening, to the leaves bade,
a reluctant farewell to the breeze.
Ragolapalli: that halcyon venue,
thwarted everyone's dysfunction;
Whoever, experienced it anew,
came away, with redemption.
Memories, in mental videos,
evoke that youthful fragrance;
mothers now, as hoary widows,
nothing left, only remembrances.
Everyone, departs their home,
never, to return again;
Stories remain, reluctant in some,
pushing on, thwarting the pain.
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About the Author
Raju Peddada is an industrial designer running an eponymous brand, purveyor of ultra luxury furnishings of his own design (see peddada.com). He is also a freelance correspondent/writer for several publications, specializing in commentary, essay, and opinions on architecture, design, photography, books, fashion, society, and culture. Peddada was born in Tallapudi, a small southern town in south India. He's lived in New Delhi and Bombay before migrating to the West Indies and eventually settling in Chicago, Illinois, where he worked in corporate America until he chose to set up his own designing firm. He lives with his family in Des Plaines. (back)