The priest said I must have killed
a holy snake in my previous life;
and so my crops don't grow and
the cow died, and the baby too.
For a hundred rupees, the priest
will plead with the Gods for mercy.
If I had a hundred rupees, the baby
would have had milk, and lived.
'What good is a God that needs a bribe'
the missionary asks in a gentle voice
'You did not have a previous life
and killed no snakes; come to me
Jesus will save you and end your woes.'
So I went; but even with a new name,
new prayer and God, the crop failed
and my eldest son became very sick.
When I asked the missionary why,
he told me it was my fate to suffer
because of a man he called Adam
and the apple that was eaten by him:
all this at the behest of a snake.
And so I now pay for his mistakes.
What matter which God I worship?
It is snakes who determine my fate!