Upon arrival, the air is like incense
The hazy, dusty fog makes me see
I no longer need my Western sense
Or even warp speed – I can just be.
Ganesha, Siva, Krishna and Ram all swing
From rickshaws barreling over rocky road
Temples on every corner where they sing
God is everywhere, didn’t you know?
Relatives I barely saw as a child greet me,
I feel utterly connected yet a distant being
Wondering had I lived here who I would be
But knowing both worlds has been freeing.
I receive looks from curiosity to fear by all
Who is this Indian with the Western flair?
Chai and snacks, plus here wear this shawl
For you’ve come home with news to share.
We go to the chaotic markets to shop
Past the lust obvious in men’s eyes
Our driver yells at the beggars to stop
I see no masks; none wear a disguise.
Shopkeepers sweep and bargain smiling
Dirty little children sell loose bobby pins
The women running sari shops compiling
Lists of measurements and a tally of sins.
Children asking for pencils and your story
Beside helpful guides looking for bakshish
A lesson in when to give or say sorry
And how to avoid the peddlers of hashish.
Shrines in every corner adorned in Jasmine
All else dressed in red, green, silver and gold
Arrays of sweets, fruit and spices in bins
A vibrant energy sizzles in the young and old.
Steaming rich curry and saffron rice is served
With crispy buttered naan upon a large thali
For Golab jamun or kulfi space is reserved
Eating is both reverent and utterly jolly.
Cows, dogs and elephants are allowed to stray
Here where the Earth is rarely ever tamed
New hotels, shopping malls signal a new day
But Dharma runs too deep to be contained.
Sun showers wash the roads of grime
Bells, drums and horns sound in the breeze
Everyday a celebration of the sublime
With processions of orange-robed swamis.
Computers and the metro spike power troubles
While cars get smaller and cheaper to own
The divide between rich and poor doubles
But few want to serve in someone else’s home.
We travel up north to Haridwar and Rishikesh
The seat of spiritual reverence and power
The sacred Ganges purges all sins from flesh
Green mountains awaken the inner flower.
I felt the ancient Earth supporting me
The Air stealing my sadness far away
Fire igniting as passion in my belly
Water sending alms into another day.
The Ghats are full of meditating sadhus
With matted locks and ash on their faces
The surnise and sunset pujas for Hindus
Rouse and enrich my Inner spaces.
A magnificent statue of Lord Siva graces
Love and compassion to all who come near
Following him has led to amazing places;
What I must do has become crystal clear.
A world of extremes and opposites exist
But Modern India is still the land of the free
Enlightenment is there for all who insist
On nourishing their soul for eternity.
July 23, 2010
This is independence day
For all the pieces of me
Today and tomorrow,
In my world and yours
There’s now open space
It’s a sudden choice
in the in-between place
It’s where the sun shines
And the moon glows
The stars twinkle
And happiness grows
Patterns spindle in the air
Shapes form before me
The mind is calm enough
Love sees the enemy
With the sweet grace of touch
And the embrace of thought
Enemy becomes friend
And the lesson taught
This is independence day
Let freedom ring
For those denied the right
To let their hearts sing.
July 3, 2010
All around me is a secret
Known to few
The rest know lies
And think them true.
Initiation is an ancient rite
Done in silent joy
What we can’t destroy.
June 29, 2010
I don’t need a reason to be sad
I’ve lived long in the decay
I’d rather feel pain than dead
So joy can return someday
Few understand what’s inside
Lightning arcs across my sky
The darkness lightens slowly
I watch the moonlight die
As dawn beckons clearly.
Shame and fear twisting free
The misery of hurt denied
Can anyone truly love me?
Everyone seems connected
Unburdened past my ability
I feel infected and dejected
Until I surrender to serenity
June 16, 2010
I trust in you
to see me through
You’ve always been there
An invisible hand
Moving me past
The illusion of what’s true
May 17, 2010
Dark shadows overhead glow slate gray
Energized air shoots through my window
My heart exalts to feel the threaded drops of rain
Then crackling and waves of light brighten the dark
Revealing the night’s secrets in a flash
I wake up to a shower of cleansing insistence
Rinse away my tears, my fears and harken new life
May 3, 2010
The water beckons
Let me enfold you
Return you to Grace
Seized by inner currents
Pulling me underneath
To dig for fragments
Healing as I weep
Relentless drive pushes
All parts in tow
To the darkest cave
To what I know
April 2, 2010
Slowly I return to myself
The flute sings to me
Return to beauty
Return to Source
Remember who you are
Let the illusions die
March 17, 2010
I’m just sad and don’t have much to say.
I wish I could help lift all your pain away.
You cry and scream, bang your head against the wall.
I spout words that don’t do anything at all.
Can talking ever speak to the demons inside?
Or do they hold on for the entire ride?
Maybe my mind should shut down now
Until the answers come with the how
Feeding frenzy, the rage tears through
Glimpses of what humanity knew
September 2, 2009
I cry inside so no one seesWind shaking leafy treesThe earth trembles, thunder frees
Breath chokes, throat seals tightThe mists descending, blurring sightDark sky changes day into night
Tears pour forth without checkWater pooling by my feet collectLife Mother weeping to connect
Now the stream steadily flowsBreathing, hearts beating knowsPeace vibrates and the soul grows
Lessons learned, channel the tearsFrom grieving to reclaiming fearsHeal ourselves and the Earth hears.
August 1, 2009
The mirror looks inside and pries
Another day of deceit and lies
Slippery delusions’ binding ties
Then the numbing state unflies
Letting out truth an’ painful cries
Shattering the cocoon it denies
Leaving me vulnerable yet wise
June 25, 2009