Happy Teacher’s Day

Before I knew the word Guru,
I knew my Jejema was mine.
Her simple, grandmotherly words
(When not accusing everyone,
Or not complaining, grumbling, rude)
Were always dripping wisdom pearls.

I still preserve a memory
I have from baby cradle days.
(Or maybe it was later on
And now my mind is playing tricks.)
I had a plastic pointy star
Suspended from my cradle’s arch.
I tried to grab it, never could,
No matter how I stretched my arms.
And even if a fingertip
Would lightly tilt it to my side,
It quickly slid and rocked away
So much further from my reach.
Frustrated, I would kick it out,
And teasing me, it swung to me,
To only swing away again
Before I clutched my fingers tight.

She saw me do this all the time –
This constant game of pull and push –
And one day, smiling, spoke to me
In what I’d come to call her “voice”:
“It’s fruitless trying to control.
Attachment, pulling, takes away.
Avoidance, pushing, thrusts your way.
And such is life, my little one.
Remember this in everything.
I saw it late. You saw it now.
I hope someday you’ll understand.”

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