Ambika Talwar: Poetry inspired by Cinema



AMBIKA TALWAR is an educator, author and artist, who has written poetry since her teen years. She has authored Creative Resonance: Poetry—Elegant Play, Elegant Change; 4 Stars & 25 Roses; and other chapbooks. Her style is ecstatic making her poetry a “bridge to other worlds.” She is published in Kyoto Journal, Inkwater Ink – vol. 3, Chopin with Cherries, On Divine Names, VIA-Vision in Action, in Poets on Site collections, in St. Julian Press, Tower Journal, and others; has been interviewed by KPFK; has recorded poems for the Pacific Asia Museum. She has also won an award for a short film at a festival in Belgium. She practices IE:Intuition-Energetics™, a fusion of modalities, sacred geometry and creative principles for wellness and teaches English at a community college. “Both poetry and holistic practices work beautifully together, for language is intricately coded in us…,” she notes. Originally from India, she resides in Los Angeles, California.
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Note: “Rosebud’s Contract”  was written during the “Literature and Art of Cinema Workshop” held at the 2014 Silent River Film Festival. The Poem was inspired by the lead character in the film Pretty Rosebud. The story reveals the conflicts of Rosebud in her marriage and other alliances as she searches for who she truly is. The film is directed by Oscar Torre and written by Chuti Tiu, who also played the lead character. 





Rosebud’s Contract

What does Rosebud desire?
What does any rosebud desire
but to make the air fragrant?

Dress me in yellow bandage mother
why is the world full of lies
why must I speak a million apologies
to a man of god
am I not a woman of goddess

what does Rosebud desire?
Surely love, amity, freedom as that of land untouched
not curdled by another’s lust
Wanton violence – Why am I seduced by
power? Why not ground to dust
by face of sinners?

Bless me Father for I have sinned,
you tell me to say.

Bless me for I believe not any more in sin.

Do I wish to be a butterfly?
Shall I dance?
Metanoia of grief wracks my skins

Everywhere I turn the air is tense
with wounds so grave
as to risk being covered with dust of nations.

What of humanity?
Yours, Father, and mine?
Is there no sin in the house of god?

Isn’t the whole world god’s own house?
its walls built with lies.
Bless me – if you have never seen
the colors of sin, the tastes of skin.

I shall be a bridesmaid with oil
I shall march with truth’s socks
I shall rub ash on my forehead

before I look through the window
where time’s crossings
repeat my story. Yours.

May I sing a song of buds
for my child…?

What does Rosebud desire?
What does any rosebud desire
but to make the air fragrant
before the blue sky
becomes murky
and sex loses its way.
How have I sinned mother?
Same road same gravel
unwinds as yellow bandage

Is this not where everyone travels?
Sing me the song, the child song.
Remember what Rosebud desires…!




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One Comment:

  1. Ambika – I am touched by your soulful poetry – it captures and extends so much of the film’s themes. Many, many thanks!

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