MOONING

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Surya, Indian cinema seems preoccupied with the moon!

Well, our poets, from as early as Sangam literature times, have been obsessed with Moon because of the soft glow, grace, cool & calmness that Moon affords. Poets always compared the moon to women and the Moon is considered Female. So the natural association of a woman & moon in literature!

Really?

Also,  the moon was the beloved friend of literary heroines to whom she could confide her deepest emotions; and often her emissary! Cinema lyricists, inheriting such literary legacy, endowed the Moon in film songs.

My name is Nila!

Your parents must be quite romantic!

*Surya is the name for Sun and Nila is the name for the moon in most South Indian languages.
*In terms of film output, India ranks first in the world, followed by Nollywood, Hollywood and China!
*Sangam period is the period in the history of ancient Tamil Nadu (known as the Tamilakam) spanning from c. 3rd century BC to c. 3rd century AD. It is named after the famous Sangam academies of poets and scholars centered in the city of Madurai. In Old Tamil language, the term Tamilakam referred to the whole of the ancient Tamil-speaking area, corresponding roughly to the area known as southern India today, consisting of the territories of the present-day Indian states of Tamil Nadu, Kerala, parts of Andhra Pradesh, parts of Karnataka and northern Sri Lanka also known as Eelam. According to Tamil legends, there were three Sangam periods, namely Head Sangam, Middle Sangam and Last Sangam period. Historians use the term Sangam period to refer the last of these, with the first two being legendary. So it is also called Last Sangam period or Third Sangam period. The Sangam literature is thought to have been produced in three Sangam academies of each period. The evidence on the early history of the Tamil kingdoms consists of the epigraphs of the region, the Sangam literature, and archaeological data. The period between 600 BC to AD 200, Tamilakam was ruled by the three Tamil dynasties of Pandya, Chola and Chera, and a few independent chieftains, the Velir. There is a wealth of sources detailing the history, socio-political environment and cultural practices of ancient Tamilakam, including volumes of literature and epigraphy. Tamilakan’s history is split into three periods; prehistoric, classical  and medieval. A vast array of literary, epigraphical and inscribed sources from around the world provide insight into the socio-political and cultural occurrences in the Tamil nation. The ancient Tamil literature consists of the great grammatical work Tolkappiyam, the ten anthologies Patthupattu, the eight anthologies Ettuttogai, the eighteen minor works Pathinenkeelkanaku and the five great epics, Silappadikaram, Manimegalai, Sivaga-Cindamani, Valayapathi and Kundalakesi.
*Friday Fictioneers is talented group of enthusiasts penning down a story, a poem, a prose, etc., expressing their heart about a photo prompt, every week. Thanks for this week’s beautiful photo prompt © Ted Strutz
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MARITAL & MARTIAL

The plains of marriage are littered,
With the dead and the dying,
What was meant to be a garden,
With beauty and blessing,
Today has become a field of battle,
Pitting against one another,
Two who were meant to be one!

The crops of the union have become
Poisonous hemlock and bitter gall,
The fruits of the fusion were designed to be
Sweet to taste and strength to life!
The real victims of this evolution
Often are the innocent and the endearing
Little ones who are a message from heaven!

Whatever happened, to passion and compassion
God in Your mercy, grant us to be human!

*Wrote this when I was burdened and sad about the increasing number marital breakups. Not judging anybody or anything, its the outpouring of my heart!

I chopped up my poem to fit the word limit. Here is the full version!

MARITAL & MARTIAL
The plains of marriage are littered,
With the dead and the dying,
What was meant to be a garden,
With beauty and blessing,
Today has become a field of battle,
Pitting against one another,
Two who were meant to be one!
The crops of the union have become
Poisonous hemlock and bitter gall,
The fruits of the fusion were designed to be
Sweet to taste and strength to life!
The real victims of this evolution
Often are the innocent and the endearing
Little ones who are a message from heaven!
Whither this change, so dramatic and drastic,
So damaging and destroying!
Wherefore this phase, so blatant and blase,
So blustery and blundering!
Whatever happened, to passion and compassion
To endearment and endurance!
God in Your mercy, grant us to be atleast human!
*Friday Fictioneers is talented group of enthusiasts penning down a story, a poem, a prose, etc., expressing their heart about a photo prompt, every week. Thanks for this week’s beautiful photo prompt ©  J Hardy Carroll
                                                      

 

GOLDEN SLIPPERS

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"Children, today I am going to teach you O DEM GOLDEN SLIPPERS". 

(Sings and teaches them to sing). 

"Not them but dem!" 

"Why?" 

"Its a negro spiritual and must be sung like that." 

"Its so sad, Thatha!" 

"Yes, maganae. 
It echoes the heart and longing of a negro slave
He is yearning for heaven because he will be treated as human being.
He wants to be valued and be equal to everybody else!"

"Why do people make slaves of others? 
We are all God's creation!"

"I don't know!"

My paternal grandfather was a good singer and taught all his grandchildren from his rich repertoire of songs. I remember him teaching us negro spirituals and insisting on their language. This photo prompt reminded me of one of the first songs I/we learnt at his feet!

In its original form, it was a spiritual sung by black slaves to express the hope of freedom and of meeting God. 

Golden Slippers Also known as Oh, Dem Golden Slippers 1879 was a popular song commonly sung by blackface minstrel performers in the late 1800’s. Golden Slippers was written by James Bland, a black songwriter who wrote for minstrel shows. Bland was also the first man to put the 5th string on a banjo. He did very well touring Europe in 1800’s. Bland had much less success touring in the States because blacks weren’t permitted on many stages, unless it was to perform for an all-black audience.
The song’s first stanza tells of setting aside such fine clothes as golden slippers, a long-tailed coat and a white robe for a chariot ride in the morning (presumably to heaven). The song is well-known today as the unofficial theme song of the Philadelphia Mummers Parade.
LYRICS
Oh, my golden slippers am laid away
‘Cause I don’t spect to wear ’em til my wedding day
And my long tailed coat, that I love so well
I will wear up in the chariot in the morn.
And my long white robe that I bought last June
I’m goin’ to get changed ’cause it fits too soon
And the old grey hoss that I used to drive
I will hitch him to the chariot in the morn.
CHORUS:
Oh, dem golden slippers
Oh, dem golden slippers
Golden slippers I’se goin’ to wear
Because they look so neat.
Oh, dem golden slippers
Oh, dem golden slippers
Golden slippers I’se goin’ to wear
To walk the golden street.
Oh, my old banjo hangs on the wall
‘Cause it ain’t been tuned since way last fall
But the darks all say we’ll have a good time
When we ride up in the chariot in the morn.
There’s ol’ brother Ben and his sister, Luce
They will telegraph the news to uncle Bacco Juice
What a great camp meetin’ there will be that day
When we ride up in the chariot in the morn.
So, it’s good-bye, children I will have to go
Where the rain don’t fall and the wind don’t blow
And yer ulster coats, why, you will not need
When you ride up in the chariot in the morn.
But yer golden slippers must be nice and clean
And yer age must be just sweet sixteen
And yer white kid gloves you will have to wear
When you ride up in the chariot in the morn.
http://www.digitalhistory.uh.edu/music/titles_noncopyright.cfm

*(Thatha – grandfather, Maganae – son in Tamil)

*Friday Fictioneers is talented group of enthusiasts penning down a story, a poem, a prose, etc., expressing their heart about a photo prompt, every week. Thanks for this week’s beautiful photo prompt © Sarah Potter

GONE ON WITH THE WIND

Gone from what is called life,
Gone to live another better life,
Gone from the shackles of pain & death,
Gone to the freedom of sustaining bliss.

Gone from the bottles of earthly life,
Gone to drink from rivers of heavenly life,
Gone from the food that rots the bones,
Gone to eat from the tree that restores youth!

Gone to be bathed in the rays of eternal sunshine,
Gone to a life of everlasting gladness,
Gone to walk in the streets of golden joy,
Gone to laugh and dance for every time!

Gone to a place of peaceful coexistence,
Gone to a realm of loving kindness.
Gone to a home of freedom from care,
Gone to a land of all that you longed to have!

Gone because life, not death, called you,
Gone because healing, not sickness, overwhelmed you.
Gone because joy, not sorrow, filled you,
Gone because God, not devil, claimed you!

Sabina Tagore Immanuel

BY BREAD ALONE

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Abby, stop sulking. Come along.
You said it would be fine, Leah. Its not!
Of course it is. I love all this walking!
Are you kidding me? We were safe inside. You said it's better outside!
You were the one cribbing and couldn't wait to get out!
I didn't know what we won't have! What we would go through!
Just wait. It will get better, don't worry. At least no one is watching us constantly!
I liked that at first, but now I am tired. Of wandering!
I love it all, our freedom!
I miss it all, especially the bread!
*Friday Fictioneers is talented group of enthusiasts penning down a story, a poem, a prose, etc., expressing their heart about a photo prompt, every week. Thanks for this week’s beautiful photo prompt © Kelvin M. Knight
 

 

LOW POINT HIGH GROUND

Forlorn in desolation,
Yet majestic in isolation.
Desperate with barrenness,
But pregnant with promise.
Lowly in appearance,
Yet noble in substance.
Lost in vastness,
But protected in fineness.
Darkness around the nearness,
Yet lightness around the horizon.
Overshadowed by the depth of the grave,
But canopied by the grace of the heavens.
Standing in the history of the Tomb,
Yet resting in the promise of the Resurrection.
Missing you forever in the present,
But meeting you forever in the future,
In weakness made strong,
Standing tall in this my strength!

*I am writing this in the aftermath of my sister’s early demise last week around this same time frame. This is more an echo of what my bro-in-law is/will be feeling right now, an articulation of a lonely path he is right now treading. They didn’t have kids and so his being left behind is poignant. Please do pray for him.

The expression of my own sorrow is my earlier blog https://mullingspicewordpresscom.wordpress.com/2017/09/07/tribute-to-my-sister/

*Friday Fictioneers is talented group of enthusiasts penning down a story, a poem, a prose, etc., expressing their heart about a photo prompt, every week. Thanks for this week’s beautiful photo prompt © Danny Bowman

TRIBUTE TO MY SISTER

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Who can bear the loss of a life,
A daughter, a sister, a wife, a friend, a mentor,
All rolled together in one?

Who can know the extent of breath,
Whether it is an hour, a day, a month, a year,
All condensed to form a living!

Who can redeem the lost,
Restore the marred, repair the breach,
All making it anew!

Who can fill the​ essence of someone that
Twined her life in birth, interlaced her days in marriage,
Walked together in time, but unbraided herself in death!

Who can fathom the length of a trail,
The height of a flight, the depth of a plunge,
Or the breadth of a range!

Who can but You O Lord,
Calm the storm, quiet the seas, carry the weak,
And destroy death’s decay!

Strengthen that which remains,
Smoothen that which trembles,
Straighten that which bends,
Supplement that which was lost,
O God of my existence, my sustenance!
                                                                        Sabina Tagore Immanuel

*My youngest sibling moved on to greener pastures, painless place & no-tears permanence on Aug 30th 2017 in Trichy, S. India. She was fiercely loyal, intensely committed, passionately vocal person, born homemaker, intuitive teacher, instinctive mother,  warrior wife, dutiful daughter & supportive sibling. She battled sickness with tenacity and fought the good fight till the end. I wrote this as an outpouring of the constriction of my heart as her absence hit me with force beyond compare.

 

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As maid of honor at our cousin’s wedding when she was at the height of her womanhood!