© 2009 Ronni Shendar mangalore_shore5

Mangalore Beach

From Ulal Beach South of Mangalore, Karnataka.



Dragon flies the size of my hand
balance atop a single flower with no effort

Hordes of crows poise themselves on palm trees that blow in the wind
the curved branches swing up and down like waves in the sea
and sail them as the fearless seamen here

Our boys tan in the hot morning sun
their sun lotion sparkles in the low angled light
as they sip their first coffee

The next door construction site is already bustling
but one needs to look to notice
as slow handwork is almost silent
bricks are passed by hand
cement stirred with sticks
the few workers climb barefoot through the bamboo stick frame holding up the house’s weight

I’ve never seen so many women working in construction
sifting and straining piles of sand
sowing then from side to side
stacking them into pyramids
stirring and gathering
as they carry bricks and blocks atop their head
at times wearing special helmets
other times not
both old and young
barefoot in their sarees
as we watch the sun climb from the poolside

The sunsets here are my favorite
everybody steps out
the entire village comes to sea
walking along the waterline

School children in uniform
fishermen in longis
women in staggering colors decorate the sandy beach
as stray dogs run in packs marking each other’s territories

Sunset is when the birds come out
flocks of ravens fly over the sea
black and white eagles roam the higher sky
thin legged water birds trample the sands
picking at the crabs that peer out their holes

They all scream and squawk
their boisterous uproar mashing with the breaking waves
calling out at the sinking red ball
under a glowing pink sky
my feet in the sand
a little sunburn on my arms
the fisherman pull their nets from the water
the boys run from the waves