Dilantha Gunawardana


Undressing An Arranged Marriage


Fingers wrapped in thread
And water dripping down the underside of palms
Two fibrous sculptures of bronze
In a promise to commemorate every second of pledged time
Like the tide that knows every ripple in every direction

Confluence of destinies
In the absence of the convergence of lips
Where sacred rights are entombed
In the security of trust and ownership
In the dearth of unholy ties

Man and woman, standing before one crossroad
To a destiny that matters only to two curious souls
Marooned by choice to each other's hearts
And before long clasped in lip and in bliss
As the music of the bodies rapture and enrapture
The primal grail of the human experience

Oh how potent is a paper advertisement
Fate's intervention to the fusion of two
As two souls stealthily surrender to each other's eyes
The first gaze as man and woman
With a pledge to endure beyond the palisades of time

An arranged marriage is not a makeshift destiny
but a leap of faith with an open heart
A narration of fate that supplants the mechanics of love
Where beyond the horizon is the cradle
Of finding each other, first in the merits of body
And then in the virtues of love

Love is a journey so is an arranged marriage
When clarity is a casualty, but faith lies on a podium
Where the heart gropes imprinted by first impressions
And lunges forward like a fencer battling fate

An arranged marriage, is but a sacrament of mystery
A journey with a lantern that will culminate in the brilliance of love

Submitted: Thursday, May 15, 2014

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