Rebooting the SLQ Daily
How easy it is to get sidetracked! After we enjoyed Mandy Pannett’s review of Geoffrey Winch’s Velocities and Drifts of Wind, Emman Usman Shehu’s ‘Puzzles’ and my little reflection on defying the elements on (18th of August), I got sucked into an intense world of work with the publication of the print version of Sentinel Literary Quarterly, July-September 2020, and straight unto the final touches and going to press with Phil Vernon’s Poetry After Auschwitz to be released on the 10th of September. It has also been hot daring to complete work on Anne Osbourn’s Mock Orange and Frances Corkey Thompson’s Watching the Door. These three collections – the top three prize winners in the Sentinel Poetry Book Competition 2018 will all be released this September.
The impact of all these meant that the SLQ Daily took the back seat. We are back with our read of the day being Debasish Parashar’s ‘Of Sanskriti and Prajñā’. Parashar was our Monday Writer, 31 August 2020. Our blast from the past is ‘Reflections of Spring’ which we first published in Sentinel Poetry (Online), July 2003. Oh, how I smiled a smile of joy when I read the note at the foot of the poem; ’18-year-old Robert John Helms is a student at Preston College.’ Goodness! That was 17 years ago. I have tried to locate Robert’s contact details without success. I will keep trying. It would be nice to know how he has fared in the poetry world.
Welcome back to SLQ Daily. Happy Reading
Of Sanskriti and Prajñā
The tipsy town topsy-turvy
tamarind flavored hunted a pair of eyes
Prakṛiti and purusha hand-in-hand
handcuffed hornbills striving for a flight
across turmeric skies. What looks toppled
from above is not always a sanskriti. And a
sanskriti needs not always to be wise.
I often ask myself what Prajñā is after all.
Folding your trousers when you are half submerged in flood?
Standing in a queue when no one is around?
To become asleep-walker to escape insomnia?
Now that I stand on top and look down
to find the tipsy sanskriti topsy-turvy tilted
in grief of its unheard screams
I think I know what Prajñā is. Prajñā is
the samskara of playing songs in a loop,
listening lovingly to the songs of your choice
from a playlist not always set by you. Prajñā is
not leaving a cow alone in a desert to
survive its karma. Prajñā is to look inside
to make sense of the continuous tussle between sura
and asura. What is good is not always bad.
The purusha is not always the Prakṛiti.
One is two at times and two are one at other times.
Prajñā was. Prajñā is.
ROBERT JOHN HELMS
Reflections of Spring
Sweetly chilled raindrops,
against my cheek.
Streams of life,
gracefully descending from the heavens.
I am reminded of Spring.
Where the many tulips,
and daisies grow wildly,
under the palest blue sky.
A pair of young robins,
entwined in the spirit
of the calming breeze.
A bond of love,
inscribed in their peaceful
One of many
measured by nought
but a few blinks of the eye.
Where eternity could play out
in a single heartbeat.
as the autumn skies
are kindly soaking me,
raindrop after raindrop-
-my heart belongs to Spring.