ALWAYS

The rain falls gently again tonight
And there is no wind.
But in the skies above Khajuraho
Great sheets of lightning and jagged forks
Announce the beauty of your dance,
Lord Shiva.

Surely you are pleased with your people.
Yet again you are dancing in the night sky.
Tonight you revel with us in this, your temple
Honouring the people of THE NEW EARTH.

Rejoicing in a world where everyone has
Abundant food to eat;
Clean air to breathe;
Safe water to drink;
Where streams and rivers run pure and clear;
Where tigers roam the forests,
And great whales roam the seas;
A world in which health care is freely available to all;
Where everyone has a safe and secure home in which to live;
A world in which music and dance and the arts are flourishing;
And every person has access to superb education;
Where all people know you as the One God,
Though we still worship you in richly diverse forms.

Often you have come to us, in outward show, Lord Shiva,
In the clash and furor of the storm,
Phir bhi hamesha hamare dil main tu nachta hai.*
Yet always in our hearts you dance.

* I wrote this poem in Hindi. The last line is a translation of the next to last.

Kiran Verma
21 March 2033