In the forest of Kaziranga, on the bank of the Brahmaputra,
a rhinoceros and heron saunter in flaxen-tipped grass in each other’s distant company.
No tigers this evening, my cousin and I descend the viewing stand. She grasps the bannister with my dead mother’s hand. It is more perfect than I have known, fingers tapering to coral pink in the waning light’s glow, the tawny skin now more sweet enveloped in gold.
She and I sit on the landing as two silhouettes facing the saffron-red sunset. She answers.
“This, this sky is beautiful when we see it is so, and the divine is divine since we are the real light.”
The day dives into the river, as does a tiger’s rustle and heron in swooping flight.