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Fire's Goal: Poems from the Hindu Year (Paperback)
The poems of Fire's Goal reflect a year of journeys to sacred river sources in India. Laurie Patton's poems were written after a decade of writing and reading in interpretation of India's most sacred Sanskrit compositions -- the Vedas. The book's first half, "Festavals," follows the main festivals of a Hindu year. Each poem is written in the voice of a bhakta, or devotee, as he or she performs rituals of devotion -- whether it be floating a flame down a river at Diwali or listening to the bell at a Ganesh temple at Ganeshotsav. The second half of the book, "Crossings," refers to the traditional term tirtha, or holy place. In India, a tirtha is a place where a god crossed over to be on earth. "Crossings" employs the images of Sanskrit learning to think about ordinary moments in contemporary life -- a lost lover, running with dogs, an encounter with a spiderweb, what a widow might say about her broken bangles. Fire's Goal is a poetic journey into the spirituality of India, with complimentary text that explains the festivals and sacrifices of Hinduism.