T (no first name) Wignesan

Too Late For Amends - Poem by T (no first name) Wignesan

It is as though an unjust hand punished you
As if the Adlerian guiltless position in the constellation wasn't enough
toppling you from a pedestal

You were groomed for position
for heading a family
vacated by the head himself
out of time

So they protected you
pampered you
the custom required it

there were sisters whose dowries you were supposed to earn
there were grounds whose circumferences you were designated to crush
there were centuries and goals you were bound to knock with stick and bat
there were exams you were deemed to sail through
there were jobs you were merely to inherit on merit

The second son was sacrificed
He was too close a second
They turned a deaf eye to your sacrificial deeds
the suffocating cries

'Work on what has been spoiled by the father and the mother.'
-Hexagram 18-

Other hands worked on the second son
Other sacrifices nearly came to pass
Fierce jungles
swirling muddy rivers
stalking cobras
poisonous thorns
aboriginal hunters
even your suffocating arms to lock the broken neck
fresh from a hanging

These worked
where the mother and father failed
and instilled a wish for survival in your Abel

How could you be blamed for being the first born boy
if the second took longer to arrive
or instead came as a baby girl

Neither parent may be faulted
How could either have known or foreseen
Your traversing of the desert
often in shame
in fear of being found out

You kept your back straight
You honoured your position
You wore that air of masterfulness
in your stride
in your respect for the meek for the fairer sex
in your willingness to come to the aid of the needy
in your alas mind's reach
bereft of the means to give it authority

In your own mind
you had wandered far
as far and beyond the distances of your strides
within three posts four walls open ground and air
you never bothered with approving thumps on the back
nor the little-watched heroic actions on some turf
nor did you recount these match-winning feats
in a thirst for applause

You were the quintessential sportsman
You played your last game alone
far away from your folk
You had no wish for a farewell

Yet you are mourned in pain by all

Dedicated to T. Ganesan (1931-1985)

(© T.Wignesan 1993, Paris, April 14,1993; from the collection: back to background material,1993]

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Poem Submitted: Thursday, July 12, 2012

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