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BEFORE I KNEW IT WAS TYPHOID by Pranada Comtois


 On my last pilgrimage to the holy town of Vrindavan, India, I contacted Typhoid…

 I wrote this poem the evening before I was diagnosed and rushed three hours away to a hospital in New Delhi. As I suffered that evening, I contemplated what it must feel like for a once verdant area to become a desert. That year of my visit, the monsoon rains had failed, meaning they didn't arrive.

The rains are crucial for crops that feed the Indian continent. 

For days I fretted about what no rain would mean for millions of people during the coming year. Somehow I felt that my suffering was the suffering of all people and animals and the earth itself.
'Woman Carrying Pot' by photographer Anders Blomqvist

Before I Knew it was Typhoid

Metal meets metal
  worn cylinder sounds
   release to crickets’ night trill

then intrudes again into twilight’s static:
  raw pads reflect
   driver’s reflex and neglect

Vrindavan, once oasis,
  where still a river flows,
   becomes a desert

please will you notice
  underground water evaporates:
   how many towns will vanish?

Tonight birds are silent, monkeys still
  the volcano sun will wait
   short hours to spill lava scorching

even absent, the white globe reigns
  earth’s fever does not subside
   as the village, so, too, I lie

awake, pinned
  between walls and ceiling ignited
   a ravening flame sears the brain

echoing people, animals--earth’s last wish--
  peacocks screech in relentless heat:
   Extinguish this blaze

         We are dying.
      ~

(780 million people on our planet lack access to clean water. 
Click here for more information) 

Gathering around well for water


Pranada Comtois spent two decades immersed as a contemplative-ascetic in an ashram, and the next twenty years raising a family and running two multi-million dollar businesses with the intention of embodying practical spirituality in the world. She brings the wisdom of multiple traditions and lessons from her own practice into her writing and speaking. Pranada is a spiritual activist who advocates for the Way of the Feminine Divine and the practice of unconditional love in daily life for personal and community transformation (Bhakti). She blogs at Little Ways of Being and is passionate about empowering women to find their unique gifts, voices, and strengths and to usher them into the world. Connect with her on facebook here. 


~If you are interested in seeing your poetry appear in this blog, or submitting a poem by a woman that has inspired you, please click here for submission guidelines. I greatly look forward to hearing from you!~ 


Comments

  1. Such a beautiful, moving piece. "Extinguish this blaze we are dying." It says so much. Peace

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