An Invitation To Old Flames... - Poem by Makarand Paranjape
Dears RP, DT, UK, PP, ST, J, LK, SR, SC, AB, JR, NV, RR, II, LC, RU ....
I solicit the honour of your presence
In this collection of love poems.
Like friends and well-wishers at a wedding ceremony,
I invite you to witness and bless
This garland of verses offered to my beloved.
Before saying anything else,
Let me declare that I cherish you-
Even unto eternity, to you a part of me belongs.
I am grateful for all that you've done for me
and my loyalty to you will never falter.
For like Krishna, my loves are many
And for every step that you've taken towards me,
I shall take two steps towards you.
I am sorry if I imposed myself on you
Sorry if my insistence made you anxious:
If thirsting is adolescence,
I don't know if I am grown up even now.
Each of you tried to teach me a lesson
Which I did not learn:
Don't ask for love, wait to receive it.
How unreasonable if not impossible were my demands
How hard I made it for myself and for you.
You have every right to think of me unkindly
As a tiresome jerk who couldn't take no for an answer.
Yet I don't want to forget you,
To reject my past, to lay old ghosts to rest,
To clear all debts with one measly poem.
Now that many of you are happily married,
You know I shall wish you the very best,
Of happiness, love, and prosperity,
And for those who are still single,
I wish you the partner of your choice
And a life full of fulfillment ahead.
So won't you, as my old friends and lovers,
Join this ceremony now and lend strength
With your good wishes, to this verse-necklace
For my wife: as I tie it around her neck
Like a sacred _mangalsutra_, won't you
Hands poised, shower on us consecrated rice
As they do confetti in western weddings?
[From The Serene Flame]
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