When Nature Wore Silk

silk woman

Nathi, the princess of Balapur, was travelling through a forest to see King Artha who dreamed of marrying her. She was wearing the beautiful silk garment that was presented to her by Artha.  On the way she saw a naked nun meditating in the forest. She looked young and beautiful. The men around her were singing praises. ‘Who is that?’ the princess asked to her charioteer. ‘That is Jalam, the great goddess of nature who protects the forest’, he replied.

‘I know you are not a goddess.’ Nathi shouted her, ‘Why are you not wearing any clothes? Are you not ashamed? You are questioning the dignity of women. You are a whore.’

Jalam asked, ‘How many silk worms did they kill to make that garment?’

Nathi was silent. She came out from the cocoon of her garments and meditated near Jalam. Nathi was never again polluted by clothes and wore only the skin that God and Nature had presented her. There were no artificial barriers to separate her from God and Nature. She never again thought of exploiting Nature to manufacture clothes.

Jalam turned into a spirit and entered into the silk garment. Numerous silkworms emerged from the garment which was not seen anymore. Jalam like a glow-worm flew into the heavens.

‘God has created us naked.

Why should we meddle with God’s creation?

God has made us beautiful.

Why should we hide our beauty?’ sang the devotees.

Nathi became the great goddess of Nature.

  • DENVOR FERNANDEZ
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The Dharmapuri Massacre, Chapter 1: Message in a bottle

August 15, 2015.

Buvana heard an ominous scream that resembled the ghastly screeches she had heard while watching a Tamil horror film. Her heart was hammering from inside. Why am I afraid?, she thought, there is a temple car festival going on in my village, people are celebrating, my father has contributed thousand rupees for our grand festival…

But, it was fright, pure dread. More screams visited Buvana’s ears. The echoes of the patriotic songs that she had sung at school still remained in the vibrations of her ear, in the depths of her throat. India is one, she reminded herself, there is no caste, religion, class or creed in the pure blood that flows into our hearts. The hand of her mother, Pavithra, clutched her and pulled her outside the house. They are attacking us, she said, the Vanniyars; we are Dalits and we are not supposed to pull the temple car through their streets. As they ran out they saw that many of the Dalit huts were on fire.

Buvana looked at the mob, the furious mob. She looked deep into the eyes of a middle-aged woman. The fire in her eyes could burn hell. She held a bottle in her hand. It was a liquor bottle. She threw it over their thatched roof and set it ablaze.

The Vanniyars are using petrol bombs!, Pavithra whispered. She remembered that it was only a week ago that all women had come together to fight the liquor mafia. Women were turning against women, children were turning against children: all in the name of caste.

A policeman who covered his blood dripping head with an hand kerchief cried out: Run, run to the fields!

Mother and daughter. The bond was so strong. No human vice could stop them. It rained heavily: a sign from above. They joined many other Dalits at the field. They were shivering. Where is Appa?. asked Buvana. The mother did not answer. She only sighed and sends an emotional signal to the gods that created the fields. The paddy fields kept them alive. Rice knows no caste, it only knows to feed.

The people in the field looked at each other. They were the oppressed. They were together. They were less in number, but the stabs of oppression pierced their hearts. Legends and traditions sang its epics in their hammering hearts. Their great culture and heritage defined their identity. They remembered a story, a true story. Everyone remembered it. It was stuck in the collective consciousness of their race. It was the story of Dharmapuri. The great massacre of Dharmapuri.

Religion and LIterature

Religion is the integral part of every civilization on earth. From the beginning of human existence, nature and its elements delighted and baffled him. He saw the mysteries of the world. He started asking questions. With the help of the God given imaginative mind, he started making ideas, theories and observations. He began to see the supernatural in the natural and the natural in the supernatural. Humans started believing that there is something above him, something supernatural, which keeps everything under control. The sun rises, the sun sets, the stars shine, the moon graces, the clouds move, the rainbow overshadows, the rains fall, the fires destroy, the animals run, the animals die, the humans die, the babies come,  the plants grow, the flowers blossom, the streams flow and the lightening terrify all because of this supernatural power.

He started worshiping this supernatural power. Whenever he was faced with problems, obstacles and pains, he ran towards the symbol of this supernatural power. The supernatural power was called God.  The symbol was called religion.

There were many peoples around the world. They perceived the world differently. Their brains imagined in different ways. They felt the presence of many Gods. There were religions.

In the beginning, the forces and elements of nature were made Gods. Then people started building temples for their Gods. Beliefs after beliefs started mounting over the religion to make it more powerful. The Mesopotamians built the ziggurat for the moon God ‘Ur’. Egyptians worshipped the sun God ‘Ra’. The people of the Indus valley civilization sacrificed their yielding to their Mother Goddess. The symbol of a female Goddess was transferred into Hinduism as Goddess Shakthi.

Some men were more powerful than the others were. There were kings and queens. They became the Gods for the people. Pyramids were built to preserve the bodies of the Pharaohs so they would not miss their bodies in the Otherworld.  The belief in life after death led to the greater development of religion. Monotheism replaced polytheism in certain societies. The Jews found meaning in undertaking a long journey to the Promised Land as Yahweh had promised them.

Religion, culture, ritual and tradition needed to be passed on to the future generations. The stories of the struggles, the hardships and the heroic deeds needed to be passed on to the future generations. Literature was born.

The Egyptians used nails, the Mesopotamians reed and the Chinese paint to tell the stories of their civilization. One would not have got information on the ancient religions and civilizations if they had not seen their literature. Religion is passed to father to son through stories, poems, hymns, myths and prose. So is literature.

Oxford dictionary defines literature as ‘a piece of writing which is valued as a work of art’. Religion gives the value to a piece of writing. From the beginning of history religion and literature has had a strong bond between them. The literature of a society reflects the religion and culture of the society. The religion and culture inspires the literature of a particular society.

HE, SHE

she and heHandsome, Hearty, Horny, He

Soft, Sexy, Sensible, She

Heavy, Hulky, Hemingway, He

Silent, Spiritual, Sappho, She

Hostile, Healthy, Hardware, He

Sporty, Spirited, Software, She

Hilarious, Honourable, Hero, He

Savage, Seductive, Sweetheart, She

Horrendous, Hazardous, Harasser, He

Sympathetic, Sceptical, Saviour, She

Hooligan, He

Spontaneous, She

Humanitarian, He

Supernatural, She

She made love to He.

He made love to She.

She was He

And He was She.

[When you read this poem for the second time convert ‘He’ into ‘She’ and ‘She’ into ‘He’.]

DENVOR FERNANDEZ

SPIDERMAN

spiderman

‘Awh! Look how beautiful is the shirt human’s wear.’

Said a spider hanging in the air.

‘I will make my version of it’, he said like a bear.

The spider worked and did not care.

‘Humans will know the greatness of spiders.’ he thought.

‘Web shirts will be the new fashion.’ he thought.

After working for days,

The web shirt was made.

‘Spiders are not asses.’ Fathers would say he thought

After looking at his masterpiece,

He took rest hoping for the best.

A small boy came into the room

With his tiny broom.

He destroyed the spider’s web shirt

And neatness came into the room.

The spider cried and cried.

He lost everything he dreamt of.

‘Was not this boy a fan of Spider-man?’ he thought

‘Is this the way to treat the animal that inspired Spider-man?’

Love Or Love

 

076Rubens-FeastOfVenus

Love, are you the one?
Who burns inside eloping couples,
Cries after the lost ones,
Springs revenge on being jilted,
Fills the brain with wild emotions.
Wild self-destructive emotions.

Love, are you lust?
which fires the world with energy,
Forces people into that divine touch
which makes them hate.
A hate which makes them angry
A lifelong self-destructive anger.

Love, can we make you
on bed with our loving hearts,
filling our blood with heat,
touching deeper and deeper,
kissing deeper and deeper,
which finally will make us multiply.

Love, can you be kind
As you are? Can you bring the
World together? Can you?
Can you make us reach God?
Who is you are, after all…
Do you cry? Do you laugh?

Love, are you the one?
who brought Jesus into this world.
You taught us peace,
patience, joy and gentleness.
Charity, faith and piety.
But you are still a mystery.

Love, are you Jesus?
You are not envious,
boastful, arrogant or rude.
You do not do evil.
You are the truth
which will save all.

Lets make love.
Lets make Love.

DENVOR FERNANDEZ

Di-Hydrogen Mono-Oxide

You stole me from my mother, nature,
And imprisoned me into plastic bottles
With strange names on it.
Let me out! Give me my freedom!
I have nothing but chains to lose.
I once played with my mother in the forest
And jumped from mountains and peaks.
I tickled the leaves and flowers
And let fishes into my heart.
The human race floated over me.
So did the animals of the woods.
You pulled me from wells and streams
And made houses your homes.
You stole the life force from me
And let me boil in rotten factories.
You fed me with toxic wastes
When I was not hungry at all.
You gave me strange names in science.
Two little hydrogen atoms
Carried by a caring oxygen atom-
H2O- Am I just that?
I am the divinity of the Ganga
And the baptism water of the Lord.
I am the delta of civilization.
I am here in the plastic bottle, just here!
Don’t waste your time looking for me in Mars!

©DENVOR FERNANDEZ