Invisible as gods, the women
of Jodhpur palace must have enjoyed
this private world, the breeze
through the riddle, the gossip about
the goings-on below. They gazed
down at the courtyards through these jalis,
screens of red sandstone
carved so they could see out,
but not be seen.
Sometimes, even though I know you well,
your eyes are jalis; you
behind them smiling, your world veiled
as it needs to be,
whispered through windows of stone.
George Such teaches academic writing at Lee College in Baytown, Texas. His creative writing has appeared in Arroyo Literary Review, Blue Mesa Review, Cape Rock, Dislocate, Evansville Review, and many other literary journals.