I am the goddess in this temple


I am the goddess in this temple

            you come to this isolated

            corner to worship

            my ethereal body

            my skin is a mixture

            of gold and copper

            my lips are as sweet

            as morning lotus

            I might have heard your prayer—

            those verses flow

            like river out of your monklike 


            I am the fish that swims

            beneath your pious 


Ismim Putera (he/him) is a poet and writer from Sarawak, Malaysian Borneo. He is the author of a poetry chapbook Tide of Time (Mug and Paper Publishing, 2021), and recently won third place in 7th Singapore Poetry Contest. His latest work can be found in Anak Sastra, Prismatica Magazine and Be Me: LGBTQ+ Stories of Belongings.