Where have all the Burghers gone?

786px-Map-of-ceylon-c1692

Once, in the 80s and 90s, tamils
Were wiped out from the north
Just like rows of banana plants
Were toppled by the raging monsoon winds
But then, how about shedding a tear
For the wind-torn banana leaves
Which were beautifully folded
And embellished with spices
To be given as a peace offering
– Which are only found now in colonial hotspots
And coastal haunts…….-
We shout – and even fight over – for the darker skin
When we, as cultural cowboys, drove out
The fairer-citizens through ships by sea
And planes through air
So what good is a kaleidoscopic lamprais
– Wrapped in banana paper –
In the absence of an alabaster-coated egg
To indulge in color and taste?
After all our contemporary culture
Is only as insipid as the tyranny of color
Laying hideous melanin walls.

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Published by

meandererworld (Dilantha Gunawardana)

Dr Dilantha Gunawardana is a molecular biologist, who graduated from the University of Melbourne. He moonlights as a poet. Dilantha wrote his first poem at the ripe age of 32 and now has more than 1700 poems on his blog. His poems have been accepted/published in Forage, Kitaab, Eastlit, American Journal of Poetry and Ravens Perch, among others. He was also awarded the prize for "The emerging writer of the year - 2016" in the Godage National Literary Awards, Sri Lanka for his first collection of poems (Kite Dreams – A Sarasavi Publication), while being shortlisted for the poetry prize. Dilantha is a dual citizen of Sri Lanka and Australia, and shares his experiences from two different cultures. He blogs at - https://meandererworld. wordpress.com/

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