by Best Poem
May in Srinigar
I slept on a boat out in the middle of the lake and when I wanted to go
to the mainland a little dingy would take me there. And there I would walk
up the big mountain to the old temple and sit there for a while watching
the army run drills and hear soldiers make announcements over the speakers.
Or I would take a few steps through the main markets
where the mutton was sold and I didn’t know that mutton was goat
until I came face to face with a head hanging on a hook. There was the cheese man
and the many vegetable sellers sitting on blankets and the pharmacist
who sold vitamins to me when I was sick. And the boys in the phone booth
who listened to the radio all day while I made phone calls.
Then when I went back to the boat I would sit in the front
and watch as little boats passed us and some were stores
and others were just drifting by. Some would shout to make their presence known –
they said Aaaooo Aaaooo. The nights would come and a man would bring me
warm milk if I wanted it or hot tea after dinner and I would sit there reading a play
or a novel while the boat rocked gently on the lake.
Daniel Rosenkrantz was raised in Connecticut and spent two years at the University of Rhode Island. Since then he has traveled throughout Europe and India, worked on a farm in California, and lived in Berlin, Germany writing and working as an English teacher. In 2006, Daniel self-published a book of poetry entitled, A Leave of Absence.