The monk spoke

In an abrasive tone

Hard hitting realities

He acted out

One by one

We sat there mesmerized

He prodded and probed

Asked for our opinion

we laughed so hard

Till our sides ached

I have never laughed so much 

At a sermon


The next day we were invited for breakfast

He admonished his disciples

For not laying out on the table

A tomato curry he had got made

Especially for me

He served me a spoon full

And I thought

It’s funny how he serves the laymen

Being a monk

I was slightly uncomfortable at this

But he cracked so many jokes

It was soon forgotten


I revealed I was not married

And he said

I have been looking

Around myself for the past 38 years

And grinned cheekily

When I close my eyes

I can still see

The absolute mirth and gaiety of the man

I will write you a verse

Not a love poem – he added

Recite it daily

It will give you courage


We parted

I have never enjoyed

The company of a monk

As I did that day

He was a revelation



Sashikala Premawardhane

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