Monkey King (At The Buddhist Cave Temple At Dambulla) - Poem by Sheena Blackhall
Hanuman, small monkey king
Adopts the perfect pose of the adept beggar
He has captured the plea to a T
Those soulful eyes, just on the brink of tears
That one hand cupped for alms like a broken stalk
Hs wife, two steps behind,
Clutches their skinny baby like a holdall
Full of credit cards in a land of thieves
Sitting, bored in the sun, a dreadlocked bead seller
Clucks invites with his tongue, extend his fingertips
Apes the potential giver. Lures them in,
Then throws a well-aimed stick.
Rage defeats servility. The small male screeches a war dance,
Wheels and charges, teeth bared like a demon.
The peddler bats him away,
A water bottle smacked against his snout
A laughter- ripple circulates the stalls
Then, silence in the cauldron of the sun.
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