Monday Poem

The Hindu image of Anantashayana portrays the god Vishnu
reclining upon a coiled snake upon a raft floating in a sea of milk
dreaming up the universe

Until the Sacred Cows Come Home

Vishnu reclines and sleeps
dreaming up the world
He lounges upon a coiled snake
in the image of 
ananta shayana
floating on a raft
upon an ocean of milk
pacifying the characters of his dreams,
protecting his turf: his realm of
pleasure and pain; concocting
his improbable dream of a universe,
making it up as he goes

Here and there Vishnu floats
in the logic of dreams
sailing his ship of tales
–at sea but ever in sight of land;
singing, mything, pointing
he goes dreaming on,
sailing and sinking simultaneously;
doing and undoing his work at once
within the same thought,
bobbing on waves of light
while flinging its particles
into black holes

But he is never fickle.
Vishnu can never be fickle
because he’s divine

Any ordinary Joe or Ananda
would be ridiculed for insisting yes
and no in the same breath,
but not Vishnu

All Gods may contradict themselves
without flaw,
say men
(who always give their God
the benefit of a doubt
in any argument)

Faults may never be divine;
not earthquake or plague,
and especially not
the death-rattle of love

So Vishnu will sail on
upon his coiled snake,
upon his raft,
upon his ocean of milk,
with his sidekicks Brahma and Shiva
managing the staysail and jib,
dreaming, thinking, uttering
without pause, forever,
or until the sacred cows come home
and the last man disappears
–whichever comes first

Jim Culleny