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photography Mukund Venkatraman
verses Tanya Mendonsa

Mukund Venkatraman

Throw your books into the water,
said Shams to the poet Rumi
and then see what happens to the sky there :

it shimmers with
a million birds in leaves
talking to each other
better than any page could.

Mukund Venkatraman

See the bones and the beauty of mortality laid bare :
on this childbed
an ancient trunk raises its legs in pain and glory
to re-birth the dance of the universe.

Mukund Venkatraman

the thunder of the stormclouds
shocks our branches to imitate the lightning
that pulls the rain down
to drench us in music

We are the listeners.

What do we hear from afar ?
clacking of empty endeavor;
thudding of tired hearts.

We are too busy ourselves
with symphonies of wings
and claws
and fur
that we shelter and feed effortlessly
from root
to sap
to crown

Mukund Venkatraman

so different
each from each
and yet we live together
without a murmur of war

Mukund Venkatraman

watch the trees kiss one another

feathery fingers
touching tip to tip
so gently

the wind thinks it is being kissed as well

Mukund Venkatraman

I look into the light
hoping to find myself
and, instead, learn a lesson :

we have to abandon ourselves to the world
before it can embrace us.

Mukund Venkatraman

O, the delicacy of the living thing
that bows to its neighbor !

About Mukund Venkatraman

Mukund is an award-winning designer who studies the lines between art, design and culture. He is the co-founder of Art Satva. You can follow him at @mukundvenkatram

About Tanya Mendonsa

Tanya was educated at Loreto school and college in Calcutta. After spending twenty years in Paris, studying French literature at the Sorbonne, painting and running a language school, she returned to India, a story told in her memoir The Book of Joshua. Her first collection of poetry, The Dreaming House, ranged effortlessly in theme, maintaining a startling clarity of vision and language. Her poems have been widely anthologized. Her second collection of poems is an exploration of a meditation on two eternal themes: love and friendship and is called “All The Answer I Shall Ever Get” by Harper Collins.

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