MEDITATION ON A SWEET POTATO

The scientific Latin name
for the kūmara, following the pattern
as laid down by Linaeus
is Ipomoea batatas; “batatas” is
relatively straightforward
Neo-Latin for “potato” and “Ipomoea”
is based on the Greek:
“ips”, meaning “worm”, and “homoios”,
meaning “same”, from the resemblance
of the sweet potatoe
to a slow fat grub,
but in te reo Māori,
“ipo moea” in correct syntax
as “moea i po” is to dream in the night
like a kūmara buried in its mound of earth.

Coincidentally,
Kumara is a name of the Hindu war god
Murugan, and the four child sages
Sanaka, Sanatana, Sanandana

and Sanatkumara, born of Brahma’s mind.

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