I woke each morning, harboring a lusty continent.
Watching women wrapped in color
Legions of them.
Hardly a square foot without.
Hair so long it grazed the unapologetic curve of bare lower backs.
I tasted the shores and felt the spices simmer on my tongue.
I spat back the dirt—for oh, there was muck –
But nothing that could dissuade an evoked suitor.
If you had asked me then, I would have said I was thoroughly enchanted.
Enamored, if you will, to kiss the coast of such a glittering tapestry.
How blindly my fledgling pallet once rejoiced at mere shadows of true flavor.
I should have seen her coming at the onset of June.
I should have listened to the winds, her chariots, that brushed my ears.
“It won’t be long now” they told me as they jockeyed their horses on.
For those winds shot ashore with a madness.
They raged across the land, furiously drunk on their purpose,
Until they reached the Himalayas where the mountains forbade them further admittance.
The winds had no choice but to ricochet into the heavens,
Taking the clouds as their casualties, chilling them to the quick,
Which was just what she needed for her entrance.
She was not demure.
She did not lure me with coyness.
She lent me no disillusions of my grandeur.
She snarled from black clouds, ominous.
I – a Bay – for the first time experienced the fear of drowning.
She took my face in her hands, laughed, “Oh little Bengal! What a kitten!”
Her reign doused the coast, my fingertips crawled further inland than I’d ever been.
Her wind-minions, now unleashed, skimmed wildly along my edges,
Causing unflattering ripples on my surface.
In defense of my honor I answered her with a tidal wave.
She cackled like a fiend,
with no regard for my display.
I felt for the women I’d spent my time admiring,
They were powerless to her jealous vengeance.
She clenched them in her grasp, wringing them out just to soak them again.
And so I – again, being a Bay, i.e. the nearest receptacle of excess precipitation –
had no choice but to gulp her down, drink her in.
It was for the salvation of these people, you see.
That’s how it started.
My sacrifice for their survival.
And so I accepted her estuaries, and I drank her every drop.
It wasn’t long before I became intoxicated,
I grinned in anticipation of her next move.
She made a lush of me, I carried no regret.
I let her roam.
I crossed my heart in promise.
Our union made hallowed in our inseparable solution.
Wild as we were, the dwellers on the shore endured our onslaught.
They gave thanks as they harvested their cotton, their rice, and their grains.
A delivery well worth our wanton nature.
And so it was until the end of September,
When she looked at me so somber, drops of rain – or were they tears?
“I’ll be back in June, will you wait that long?”
Oh, I’ll wait.
I’ll wait again for my Monsoon.
Furious and fleeting,
The Bengal will have no other.
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