KETI SUNDAR WOMEN OF NEPAL
Women who live in or come from Nepal,
You are all aspects of Devi,
Incarnations of the One Goddess,
Unacknowledged divinites of love.
Your eyes are deeper than sky or than night,
A sort of infinite violet darkness,
An evening where we learn to adjust
To unaccustomed depths of the shadows,
Eyes where beneath a dome of stars
We wander garden paths in long silences,
Eyes where the light dives in and stops running.
Your hair is as rich and dense as a forest,
A place where a man might easily lose himself,
Leaving behind the world to go further,
Farther from home, pursuing your scent,
Or your hair could perhaps be the grove where we hide
From our enemies to find weapons and gain
Certainty in the truth of our cause.
But your hair is so soft, and as
Delicate as the breeze that stirs
Curtains in the first chill of evening,
Separating the fabric to refresh
Rooms where the atmosphere had grown stale,
Hair we follow as though it were pulling us.
Your hands are each an entire body,
Accustomed to going everywhere nude,
Unencumbered by fabric or shame,
Female without the issue of being female,
Unafraid and without any secrets,
Ready to touch whatever touches them,
Willing when everything else is tired,
Generous, opening valleys to give
The wealth of their incredible usefulness,
The beauty of their length, their warmth, and
Everything, everything, everything they have.
But we must never forget your feet,
Whether or not they are sore or tired,
Whether or not they remember where you went
Following them up the rocky mountain path,
Whether or not you cut them on stones,
Tore them with thorns and bruised them on logs,
Your feet deserve eternal massages,
Oil to smooth the places where they hurt,
Fingers and thumbs to press and release,
An army of worshippers to revere them,
And kisses, more kisses even than your hands,
Because they suffer in secret, more kisses,
Along the curve of the soles to their toes,
Which speak entirely in folk dances,
And up, perhaps all the way to your ankles,
Because ankles, never, ever get kisses,
Descending the tendons back to your heels,
And your feet, which nobody ever kisses, with
Kisses that rise out of storage inside us,
Numberless kisses that fly out like birds
From the wheat when a raptor circles above them,
More kisses than people have words to speak with,
More kisses than people have needs to explain,
Because your feet carry you without payment,
Because your feet have no tongues to describe
How they feel when you go to sleep at night
And they are the only parts of your body
Unable to snuggle like spoons in a drawer,
Unable to touch and be touched the way hands touch,
Because they are beautiful, even more kisses,
As beautiful as the Earth they know so well,
As beautiful as Spring which no one can resist,
Because they are often unloved, more kisses,
As many kisses, I think, as your mouth,
The window where your soul emerges
As your voice and embraces us, or your lips,
The softest place in a hard universe,
The pillows where dreams can go to sleep
After a long hard day of dreaming
And dream that they are dreaming on your lips,
Moistened occasionally by your tongue,
Warming the rest of the time in the sun
Or cooled by the evening when the world opens
And objects begin to dream on their own,
Your lips, where longing is finally satisfied,
Anguish is answered, and loneliness dies,
The sensual curve of your beautiful lips
Which should always, always, always be kissed.
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