Aswaddumization

fallow

A Sinhalese word meaning cultivation
Like when seeds are sowed on arable land

And that is a rare Sinhalese word
Found in English dictionaries, yet used sparsely

And I’m a lecturer who throws seeds of knowledge
Like a sarong-clad sower, in Sinhalese, English and Singlish

And just like the parable, some seeds grow
On neuron soil, making dendrites and synapses

And relay the beauty of neurotransmitters
Into the currency of education

And that is my vocation, to simplify obese text books
And cultivate seeds of working knoweldge

On impressionable soil, to grow and bear a harvest
A yield of grains, as golden as sunlight

And when I come home after a long day at work
I’m a different sort of farmer practicing aswaddumization

I sow love, in flicking words of romance, in gazes
That hold their field like lighthouses and in making love

Like a plough scooping out a little bit of bliss
And making the fecund soil, a little happier

And one day, after 30 years of lecturing and love-making
When I have a nagging pain in my heart

And I’m put to sleep by fate, then too I will
Be fertilizing the soil with nutrients and organic matter

“Aswaddumization” will be my legacy, an obscure word
In the English dictionary no one remembers, and

Only a lengthy poetry blog and a frozen facebook page
Aswaddumizing my alibi, my own tangibility

In the otherwise fallow fields of history.

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Author: meandererworld (Dilantha Gunawardana)

Dr Dilantha Gunawardana is a molecular biologist who graduated from the University of Melbourne. He moonlights as a poet. His poems have been accepted/published in Forage, American Journal of Poetry, Kitaab, Eastlit and Ravens Perch. He mixes science with poetry for a living, when what matters is the expression of both DNA and words into something serendipitous. Although an Australian citizen, Dilantha is domiciled in Sri Lanka, his country of birth.

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