Wednesday, 8 October 2014


She was not Patācāra or Kisā Gōtami
unmarked by birth or legend
role in a nidāna kathāva to illustrate salience;
she was Sriyani
not from Sāvatti
and unmentioned in the Therigātha.
Sriyani of Bowalawatte
is hardly poetic
widowed and tumored
she did not look for mustard
from deathless households
(she knew that story)
she bore her weights
she sent her son to school
and daughter too
who a month ago
was with words struck down
two -- lung, cancer
and she went her way
just the other day
but Sriyani of Bowalawatte
had breath and word
just enough to say:
‘Think, little one, of the Buddha’
and was blessed to hear her say
‘That’s what I do, Amma’
and those words she took with her
a mustard seed as salve enough
this nun of so much fortitude.

Please leave a comment

No comments :

Post a Comment