by George Green

George Green


The Nagas are Shaivite sadhus
who go around naked
or in loinclothes.
They cover themselves with ashes
from funeral pyres.

They resemble Rastafarians
in that they wear their hair
long and matted in a style
similar to dreadlocks
and smoke copious quantities
of hashish in chillums.

They arm themselves
with tridents and with
long knives, like ratchets
or machetes.
It was these tridents
that prodded the Buddhists
out of India.

They beg and often extort alms
from householders or passersby.
Most of them are celibate.

My friend the Swami
once saw a Naga
string his cock
between two wooden blocks
and then hammer the top block
down again and again
as though he meant
to pulverize himself
and in that way
diminsh sexual desire.

Mah?dev?, a V?rasaiva
bhakta saint,
was married to Shiva
like a nun.
All her songs
are about her
search for him.

She wandered around
twelfth-century India
naked, covered only
in her tresses,
like Lady Godiva.

She was of surpassing beauty,
and men pursued her.
Somehow she eluded them.
Finally, she was forced
into a marriage
with Kaúsika, the king.
But she escaped
to Sr?saila,
the holy mountain,
and died in a state
of god-intoxication
or oneness-with-Shiva.
She was 25.


I think that Jesus was mad
when he cast the money-changers
out of the temple. The Johannine Gospel
places the incident at the beginning
of His ministry, but I believe the
Synoptics are correct, and it happened
only days before the Passion.

I don’t think He started a riot
just because they were selling some pigeons.
I think that Jesus was mad
because He didn’t want to leave
His own sweet human body
He knew that they were going to
torture Him to death,
but He had no idea
what the Resurrection Body would be like,
or how terrible it might be
to live in eternity.

He was afraid.
He thought the world was coming
to an end in a few years.
He was wrong about that.
He loved His human body.
He wanted things to stay the same.
I don’t think He knew
that He’d get to stay
around for a while
after the Resurrection,
and eat the honeycomb,
and cook some fish,
and walk on the road again
for miles in the dust,
explaining the Scriptures,
appearing and disappearing,
shoving Thomas’s hand
into the hole in His side.

Last updated August 19, 2022