The waves were raucous and strangely unfamiliar. Choppy was not the word she would usually use to describe the water that surrounded her, but there simply seemed to be no other word that fit better.
A few moments ago, she had been fascinated to look at them from a distance. And had walked closer of her own accord. As the waves had lapped at her feet, she had seen how they had looked like they were inviting her in. Stepped in she had, without hesitation.
And then the water had sucked her in.
She had swum; floated a bit.
Drowned, too. And then submerged herself willingly.
Until understanding dawned that she had to ask for the waves to allow her to pass.
Was it not the same water that had longed to touch His feet? Should it not connect with Her the same way?
As if in response to Her thoughts, the mighty Jumna parted, its water trickling by and touching Her feet, flowing over her adorned toes, jingling her anklet as it went. There was a sublime nobility and satisfaction in the way the water parted but still kept her tethered by touching her ankles.
She walked along the bed, which now felt familiar and warm, until the banks opposite. She climbed aboard, feeling serene happiness.
Snapping awake, Kodhai looked around. She had been standing with her hands around the central wooden pillar of the kitchen, lost in thoughts.
“I’m in here, Swami!”
Vishnu Cittar entered, smiling at her as he deposited the flower basket on the wooden bench beside her.
“Maalavan has chosen the crepe jasmine for today. Please tie this garland soon. I am late for my prayers.”
Nodding, Kodhai got to work. Her deft fingers brought the flowers together in intricate patterns as she wove her thoughts of love and longing with them into a garland.
But the waves and water filled her thoughts, and she was sure that if she kept His Paancha-janyam to her ears, she would still hear the waves roiling and crashing against the shore; and her legs.
The conch would sense her blood’s as it swirled inside her.
As if He had answered her, a conch sounded from somewhere in the mountains, shaking the foundation of her house; and herself.