Sleeping Woman


(A tribute to Haruki Murakami)

Up in the hill,
Beside the pipal tree,
Beneath its longevity,
There’s a little hut,
Where a woman sleeps,
Day in and day out.

A young woman of hundred,
Her face, as hard as granite
Shines silver gray
as if scrubbed repeatedly
With a sandpaper, by dexterous hands.
She looks like an alabaster statue
With fine boughs of pipal
Branching from the top of her head,
Which sneaks out of the gable window,
Defiant and aggressive.

The little flowers in the pipal tree
Are full of pollen grains
And the bees have a business to do.
One by one, they carry the pollen
From the flowers and fly into the hut
Where they drop the grains
With their adept, tiny legs
Like bombs from night vision helicopters.

She’s been sleeping since her birth
Since the flowers first started
To bloom in the pipal tree
And since the bees came from the distant villages
Dancing in the air with their hairy little bodies
Like solitary nomads,
Drifting from one place to another.

The bees lulled her into a deep slumber.
And the flowers are just too many.
She’ll keep sleeping as long as the pipal tree
Stands upright on that ground
And as long as the bees keep dancing in the air.


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