The Supernova

 

Markandeya Purana: “Durga came into being. The unique light, pervading the Three Worlds with its luster, combined into one, and became a female form”.

Let me be the Goddess in shining armor,

Let me be the surreal creative feminine force,

Let me regain my ten mighty arms, my fiery red clothes, my infinite power.

Bring me back my thunderbolt, my trident, my lion and lotus flower.

The cosmic rampage, the reign of terror is back,

Unleashed on earth. All forms of human–horrifying, grotesque,

Clenching, hungry–surround me, threaten me, mock my prowess.

A nemesis is here, an invisible cauldron, boiling along with

Black sins of human demons. Today, as the world invokes me

In temples and pandals, inside sacred places,

Let me creep inside the being of every woman,

Let me be the burst of elemental energy inside all of them,

Let me break my proverbial omnipotence, my impetuosity

Into thin slices, and bestow each one with a handful!

Within each of them, Durga, the unique light, the synthesis

Of beauty and power, would be dancing, rippling in waves,

Sputtering in myth and mystery. Amid the abysmal darkness

Of diminishing humanity, let me rise thus, from my ashes

And be the ‘Every Woman.’

( Footnote: This poem is my humble tribute to all my women friends around the world, on the auspicious occasion of Durga Puja, as I felt there is, and also there needs to be a Durga in all of us.)

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About Lopa Banerjee

Lopa Banerjee has studied Creative Nonfiction at the University of Nebraska at Omaha and has a Masters' in English and Journalism from Kolkata, India. She has written a a book-length collection of personal essays and also a poetry collection. She is a regular contributor to 'Cafe Dissensus', an alternate journal of literature and the arts. Her poetry and essays have also appeared at journals and anthologies including 'Fine Lines', 'About Place', 'Yahoo Voices', 'Northeast Review', 'River Poets' Journal', 'Indian Review', ‘The Mind Creative’, 'Prairie Fire' and 'Incredible Women of India'.

7 thoughts on “The Supernova

  1. Louis Kasatkin

    The casual reader will find this to be a richly textured and comprehensive narrative poem.For those unfamiliar with its historic context and cultural origins,I have gleaned this from Wikipedia:-

    Durga Puja is widely celebrated in the Indian states of Assam, Bihar, Jharkhand, Manipur, Odisha, Tripura and West Bengal, where it is a five-day annual holiday.[3] In West Bengal, Assam ,Tripura, which has a majority of Bengali Hindus and Assamese Hindus, it is the biggest festival of the year. Not only is it the biggest Hindu festival celebrated throughout the state, it is also the most significant socio-cultural event in Bengali Hindu society. Apart from eastern India, Durga Puja is also celebrated in Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Punjab, Kashmir, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Kerala. Durga Puja is also celebrated as a major festival in Nepal where 91% is Hindu, and in Bangladesh where the 8% population is Hindu. Nowadays, many diaspora Assamese and Bengali cultural organisations arrange for Durgotsab in countries such as the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia, Germany, France, The Netherlands, Singapore and Kuwait, among others. In 2006, a grand Durga Puja ceremony was held in the Great Court of the British Museum.[4]

    The prominence of Durga Puja increased gradually during the British Raj in Bengal and erstwhile Assam.[5] After the Hindu reformists identified Durga with India, she became an icon for the Indian independence movement. In the first quarter of the 20th century, the tradition of Baroyari or Community Puja was popularised due to this. After independence, Durga Puja became one of the largest celebrated festivals in the whole world. It is also the largest open Air Art Exhibition in the World.

    Reply
  2. Lopa Banerjee

    Thank you, Louis Kasatkin for this illuminating addition as a post-script to my poem…it will surely make the readers better understand the context of my poem, and the idealogy behind it. And thanks again for your kind words!

    Best,
    Lopa.

    Reply
  3. Lopa Banerjee Post author

    Thanks a lot, Ampat Koshy Sir and Santosh jee, for your gracious comments!! Really glad that you liked my humble tribute 🙂

    Best,
    Lopa.

    Reply
  4. Anand Sehgal

    A nemesis is here, an invisible cauldron, boiling along with

    Black sins of human demons. Today, as the world invokes me

    In temples and pandals, inside sacred places,

    Let me creep inside the being of every woman,

    Let me be the burst of elemental energy inside all of them,

    you showed you spirit here. Bravo ! You are indeed a strong woman.

    Reply
  5. Lopa Banerjee Post author

    Thank you, Rudrodeep (Anand Sehgal) for your kind words! So glad that you liked this one!

    Best,
    Didi.

    Reply

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