My Shadow and I

My shadow and I

 

By

Dr. G. Rauf Roashan

 

My shadow and I were running away

From each other

 

The sun would bring us together

And it would also push us apart

 

Sometimes I would end up shorter

And sometimes my shadow

 

If I spoke,

If I laughed

If I hummed

He was silent

 

When my heart pounded

My arteries pulsed

His heart did not beat

His arteries did not pulse

 

Many times I walked behind him

Many times he walked behind me

And sometimes by my side

 

I didn’t truly know him, nor did he know me

And when I fell in love

My shadow would run away from me

It wanted to walk behind my love

 

But I would be quicker

My shadow would appear by my side

And later in front of me

It wanted to tell me that my back was to the sun

I used to tell him

My sun is different

 

Later I was afraid of it

I was afraid it would expose

The secrets of my heart

My heart’s secrets were love and devotion

 

 

People were drowned in lust

In deceit

They did not care for love or faithfulness

These were commodities nobody bought

And if anyone possessed them

He would be laughed at

 

They would evict him and his shadow

From the garden

They would take his flowers away

And pluck away their petals on dust

 

Their verdict would be a life in hell

For his crime of taking in esteem

Love and devotion

And the longings of his heart

 

At a time like that, my shadow would burn with wrath

It would become shorter and then longer

It would run away from the sun

It would seek a shadow to melt in

 

And in the dark shadow

It would pull me in

And take me in its arms

And my shadow and I would become one

And would know each other for the very first time

South Asian Dance

South Asian Dance

By

Dr. G. Rauf Roashan

 

Her eyes are black

Her red dress of silk

She swirls and swirls

And spreads out her white arms

Flirtatiously

 

Her long fingers

Want to converse with the air

That wants to clasp

 Her vivacious body

 

They want to tell of passion

Of want, of carnal needs of the spirit

 

Her body fills

The red dress with desire

 

Her eyes talk

Call closer

And send away, at the same time

And her cascade of long curls

Tie innumerable hearts to her

 

Her tempting dance

Nullifies all former repentances

And breaks all other allegiances

 

Oriental South Asian dance is the tale

Of secrets and mysteries

 

‘T’is the tale of love

The tale of wishes

A tale of thousands of unmet desires

And the tale of aspirations and longings

‘T’is a tale of bodies and souls

 

Each step an expression

Each movement of hands a book of desire

Each glance

Each smile, a story of love

Ecstatic in nature

 

Each movement of the body

A non-spoken invitation to compassion

Shrouded in acceptable garment

Of social behavior overshadowed by music

That shapes all wishes and desires