An epiclet: Apsara 5

Canto five

In the village, love was stirring
treacherously, as always
between the stereotyped farmer’s daughter
and the poor blacksmith’s son who helped
his father in shoeing horses for the newly arrived white-skinned firangis.
He loved the wheel that sent out sparks, the horseshoes and the whetting stone
the ability to make keys and duplicates
in the smithy’s fiery small, dark forge
but all his love went to Apsara
as hers to him by the well, one day
drawing water or by the still village lake
or in the green paddy fields that turned brown as dust
in the summer of frog croaks, no rains.
For beautiful was she as any Indian girl, brown as a berry
with black eyes and hair
that was almost, at times, as lustrous as the blue diamond
And he was also handsome, in his simple rustic dress
whether driving cattle to their homes
or helping in his father’s trade
and both went to the temple often
to pay their obeisance
to the lady in the dark niche
and saw the blue stone dream
with its blinding light in the forehead of
the fair silent figurine
beautiful and distant
to whom she prayed, so constant
and of whom he thought
secretly, to himself
I wish her skin was like
Apsara’s, so nut brown
but whom he loved more than her.
He knew, like all , the difference
between the love that gives
asking nothing in return
and all human love, that only, finally, kills

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Dr A.V. Koshy is presently working as Assistant Professor in Dept. of English, Faculty of Arts and Humanities, Jazan University, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. He has authored or co-authored seven or eight books of poetry, theory and criticism. He is an editor and anthologist. He is also a distinguished teacher of the English language and literature and a critic, with a Ph.D in modern poetry, specifically Samuel Beckett's poems in English. He was a Pushcart Prize nominee for poetry in 2012 and his book Art of Poetry was selected as Best Reads 2012 by Butterfly and the Bee. He has been editor's pick on Camel Saloon thrice and poet of the month thrice in Destiny Poets UK besides often having his poems appear in the highly selected category. Has other international awards, diplomas and certificates to his credit too.

5 thoughts on “An epiclet: Apsara 5

  1. Louis Kasatkin

    ” An eplicet :Apsara ” taken as an indivisible whole, ( although appearing on this site in individualised cantos ) certainly wants for nothing as regards scope and audacity. I think it entirely admirable that a poet , any poet ,commits their skills and acquired craft to such heroic endeavours.

  2. Koshy

    Loius, first of all thanks for your appreciation. It is highly valued. Secondly, I find it interesting that you like my poems and everyone else ignores me, except Nalini and on one poem Keith Wallis. Any idea why? Should I stop commenting on the other poems?

    1. Louis Kasatkin

      Firstly , keep on commenting it is a much prized skill not easily acquired other than by rigourous endeavour. Ah yes the great Comments Paradox. I fully understand,my honoured friend,why you formulated the conclusion that you have posted regarding the paucity and often absence of a comment/review on one’s own is my firm belief,arrived at after many years of practical experience of promoting poetry,that most people who like to see their own work published,tend most of the time to adopt a very narrow focus on which they concentrate.This usually means their own work and maybe that,occasionally of a very limited range of others. This is perfectly normal behaviour.It hardly ever varies,it is however boringly predictable,but that’s o.k. It helps seperates the sheep from the goats.


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