Astronomer – A K Ramanujan

Sky-man in a manhole
with astronomy for dream,
astrology for nightmare;

fat man full of proverbs,
the language of lean years,
living in square after

almanac square prefiguring
the day of windfall and landslide

through a calculus of good hours,
clutching at the tear

in his birthday shirt
as at a hole in his
mildewed horoscope,

 

squinting at the
parallax of black planets,
his Tiger, his Hare

moving in Sanskrit zodiacs,
forever troubled by the fractions,
the kidneys

in his Tamil flesh,
his body the Great Bear
dipping for the honey,

the woman-smell
in the small curly hair
down there.

 

Astronomer – A K Ramanujan