My love affair with Teesta

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She spreads her legs wide as to mother India’s eastern region,

from her emanates – love, empathy, unrestrained compassion;

but she can also be tough, and will drown you in her currents –

if you attempt to bathe, dowse in her your unbridled lusty sins.

 

An essence of raw beauty, at hilltops see her in embryonic pose;

at valleys – lying on her sides as a figurine of a damsel in bronze;

from bridges as if on her bridal bed lined by a medley of petals –

strings of waterfalls trickling her black-rock tresses – as if Jasmine.

 

As you drive up, your sights touching her enticing green silhouette,

she gently opens up her legs wide – to embrace you into her realm:

you’re lost in scents of her long silken tresses blowing on your face –

but her white-stone lined banks keep you falling in without caution.

 

This morning after breakfast, we set out from a hotel in Kalimpong –

to get a first glimpse of Teesta, after a downward drive for an hour:

her lean upper torso we’d traversed – getting down from Darjeeling;

then her yellow bridge covering her hips – as a sarong she’s wearing.

 

My love affair with the river Teesta started when I was a girl of five –

driving by her verges with parents, to school at St. Joseph’s Convent:

I remained sorely homesick year long – crying to sleep at the dorm,

craving to be in Teesta’s arms – every night after the light went out;

to dream she’d carry me in her arms – reach me back home by dawn.

 

 

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