Kesbawa Lake ii
The retreat is situated near a lake that is man made
We arrive in the evening, the sun softly shimmering
The crows take off from the trees
Surrounding us and baulk, screeching into the
twilight, the smaller ones are nervous
We can tell–can they tell–that we are nervous, too?
But not about the crows. About the retreat.
And the disorder that we have,
Although Viren is miles behind me as
He stays off the medication.
I have been on it since May 2015 and
it has changed me in subtle ways.
We are massaged daily. Then
Left to do as will, in our rooms.
the garden or stroll around the lake
Oh, how small our world gets,
So small that I am compelled to
listen to podcasts
From far away and hear
Michael been interviewed.
The lady of the retreat
Wears a redda and hatte
She is concerned about our food,
which is good enough
But much better when we order
Pol sambal, kade paan, dhal curry, marmite,
An omelet SRI LANKAN style.
We sigh in pleasure.
I walk around the lake in the morning
There are a few walkers and joggers on the trail,
It’s clean and peaceful country living
the light- Crystal clear and soft-
a variety of trees, the familiar:
Coconut, Palmyra, Jak, Mango
The incessant sounds of bird calls– a cacophony–
of which Vernon would be able to identify, I can’t,
Strung between two trees are the whitest clothes
A dress, 2 sarongs, a skirt, some dishtowels,
a pair of shorts. I am wishing I had my phone so
I could photograph it. to make a postcard.
Black and white and red all over.
I break into a jog and look over
At the lake, the lotuses in full bloom.
I spot a man boating on a tire
He uses a short paddle and has a bunch of
rags tied on the tire which reminds me of the bundles
Dhobis used to carry.
He looks like he is about to light a pipe.
But he is boating so he can clean the lake.
I am hoping I’ll get clean, too.
At this gentle retreat where they
look after you the traditional way
Using plants and herbs, oils and massage.
Softly coaxing self – healing. I pray.