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Night and the Elephant


Night and the Elephant

K. Satchidanandan (India)

In Coorg it is hard to know

the elephant from the night.

You think it is night; but

do not find the moon.

You think it is the tusker; but

do not find its tusks.


Is it that the night and the elephant

gave up both as they could not tell

the moon's curve from the tusk’s?


But this intense fragrance, mixed,

of sugarcane, wild berries and

the Queen of the Night blossoming

in moonlight: is it the night's scent

or the elephant's?