Translations from Ṛtusaṃhāra and Meghadūta by Kalidasa
Kālidāsa was a Classical Sanskrit author who is often considered ancient India's greatest poet and playwright. His plays and poetry are primarily based on the Vedas, the Rāmāyaṇa, the Mahābhārata and the Purāṇas. His surviving works consist of three plays, two epic poems and two shorter poems.
The new entrant teacher was her mother’s friend, Mrs Prendergast. Tall and loud, she wore two thick, long plaits that cracked through the air like whips when she moved suddenly. She moved suddenly a LOT. Along with her mother, Mrs Prendergast believed that children should be seen, but not heard. Tolerated. Just.
What if this belly
was where you buried your sorrows
nestled into disappointment
shame and fear.
What if this belly
like the time you refused
and pledge allegiance.
But then, there he was again, outside at the mall entry, near where the jacarandas line the footpath down the street. He was getting money out of the ATM just as the red and white truck drove into the nearest of the trees. Blind clumsy driving. There was no reason to drive into it.
She bent close to him. Errant strands of white hair sprouted from his mostly bald, age spotted head. She kissed it, her insides recoiling. His eyes were closed. She moved his tray and checked his supply of diapers and drinks. She tiptoed toward the door. “I’d like to think you got your love of wildflowers and gardening from me.”
My mind won’t place me there,
not today, or tomorrow, or
those four days in December,
when the drive became a ritual
and in the evenings, after the nurses
said enough, it’s almost Christmas
go home, sleep in your beds, not
hunched over like a burlap bag
of coffee beans on a storeroom floor;
Remember the gulf between who you are on the outside and who you are in the privacy of your skull? Yes, yes, you try to assimilate as best you can but you’re never quite…enough. While you know this is the case for most people, somehow, it causes you more problems than you will admit, perhaps because you’ve been raised to believe they’re character deficits and you can’t accept they define you.
Mrs. Rivera will take care of you and Marie, he assured Kalista. Leave the logistics to her. Mrs. Rivera was a premature widow of forty with pale Spanish skin and an air of puzzled resignation. Her husband, an engineer, had been killed in an accident at Richard’s mine.
I watched him climb over the splintered railing of the bridge and stand on the short planks on the other side. When he saw me on the bank, he let go and waved at me. I wanted to tell him not to jump, but when I stood up and tried to yell, I could not remember the words.
Their catnaps were high-speed energy recharges. On cool days, they slept in either of two baskets alone or together. Most days, they found sunny or shady corners around the house. We once discovered them entwined to resemble a heart. They had a favorite conjoined twin pose where they slept with their heads against each other.
You wade through the swarm of people, automobiles, and animals and find a clean spot to display your wares. Nobody looks at what you have to offer. There are too many things to buy here, you see. You slip under the radar, and somewhere you are thankful for it.