Guest poem submitted by Avni Rambhia:
(Poem #1375) The Bangle Sellers
Bangle sellers are we who bear Our shining loads to the temple fair... Who will buy these delicate, bright Rainbow-tinted circles of light? Lustrous tokens of radiant lives, For happy daughters and happy wives. Some are meet for a maiden's wrist, Silver and blue as the mountain mist, Some are flushed like the buds that dream On the tranquil brow of a woodland stream, Some are aglow wth the bloom that cleaves To the limpid glory of new born leaves Some are like fields of sunlit corn, Meet for a bride on her bridal morn, Some, like the flame of her marriage fire, Or, rich with the hue of her heart's desire, Tinkling, luminous, tender, and clear, Like her bridal laughter and bridal tear. Some are purple and gold flecked grey For she who has journeyed through life midway, Whose hands have cherished, whose love has blest, And cradled fair sons on her faithful breast, And serves her household in fruitful pride, And worships the gods at her husband's side.
Sarojini Naidu is a rather unique phenomenon in Indian literature - she seems to be one of its few poet(esse)s who is an English writer in language, style and meter. Yet her works are so Indian, it almost seems as if they emanated out of the monsoon-damped ground and hung in a shimmering veil for her to capture and pen. We studied this poem in 10th grade, and it has stayed with me ever since. It played in the back of my mind as I bought my own bangles on festivals, and as I picked out my wedding trousseau several years ago. Recently while packing my stuff to prepare for a move, I came across my bangle box and was reminded of the poem again. Google searching didn't yield much of its text  so my sister dug out my old textbook for the full poem (thanks, kid!). Not being part of the Golden Threshold, arguably Sarojini Naidu's most widely known work, has perhaps contributed to the Bangle Seller's limited recognition and availability. However, this is my hands-down favorite Naidu poem. As much for its capture of the moods and events in her Indian woman's lifetime, as for the sheer extravagance and _rightness_, so to speak, of imagery and comparison.  It did bring up, though, an illuminating discussion on the significance of Indian Jewelry - http://www.exoticindiaart.com/article/jewelry -Avni.