"Wading neck deep in a swamp, your revolver is neither use nor ornament until you have had time to clean it" Mary H. Kingsley (1897)

dance

The Grand Finale

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With the procession having reached its destination and the musicians refreshed,

it is time for a magnificently choreographed finale.

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“It’s the finale. It’s the last impression. A bad dessert can ruin the meal!”   Anne McManus

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Fame

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Less than an hour’s journey from Thrissur is the Kalamandalam, Kerala’s school of performing arts.

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On our tour of the campus, we join up with a party of very English Girl Guides.

It seems a somewhat surreal juxtaposition.

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Temple To The Arts

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During the monsoon rains I visit a temple dedicated to the performing arts.

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The Rhythm Of Kalam

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The sun has set.

With the dying of the light, Kalampattu begins.

The drums start pulsing their hypnotic rhythms.

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Song, dance and frenzy conjure up dark powers.

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Suddenly, my sensibilities are repulsed by what is enacted.

I feel as shocked as any Victorian puritan.

I put away my camera.

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Chicken may be gone from my menu for some time…

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Fevered Forms

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Fever: my pores weep.

Gentle staff, they comfort me.

I blow hot and cold.

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Shapes form, wax then wane.

Thoughts trapped in endless haiku.

Kind hands wipe my brow.

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Rigor and pain melt.

Mind at last released from verse.

Shiva’s dance transformed.

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