The Offering
by Vicki Mandell-King

The boy fidgets in his seat.
Rinpoche rocks a soothing motion,
closes his eyes, lids fluttering,
collecting thought.

He must have been that young
when he entered the monastery.
His hands are soft – counting prayers
with smooth beads raises no callous.

He smiles at the boy, warm yet aloof.
The boy begs his mother, wearing
white silk and brown velvet,
strands of copper in her curls.

Shy and bold both,
he makes his offering –
the shawl embroidered
with the scent of her skin.

Illya's Honey Literary Journal

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