On International Women's Day
On this early Spring day in the Beltway I think of all the women
who have woken me up, fed and clothed me, teased and got me
out of bed and into walking shoes, who have inspired my writing
books, who give me a pacific healing embrace when I start to stiffen,
fall into despair; and then I think of women poets who have taught
my lyrics to dance, of Sylvia Plath's rhythms, Emily Dickinson's
ellipses and dashes, of fragments that remain of the enigmatic
Sappho, and then of diplomats and poets, of Rosario Castellanos,
Gabriela Mistral who spread her lyrics in the League of Nations.
So today, friends, I celebrate women who have helped to make
me a poet and diplomat, a boy turned into man, a friend embracing
the child and birth while cries of the murdered are calling out
from the battle fields that engage their troops despite
this day where hope and rhyme entwine.
Indran Amirthanayagam c) March 8, 2022