The Immigrant’s song.
When it rains here
In this country, with its dark earth and green gardens;
sometimes the flecks of rain
caress the earth just like in the dusty Indian plains,
and as fresh waters merge in the hungry soil,
it smells like when the clouds break and its monsoon
in India, the heat of the plains dissolving in the waters.
The smell of long ago, the smell of home.
And suddenly, this country with its different skies
roses in the summer, rain in the winter
feels like home.
Creator, destroyer, passive, fierce
Contradictions live in you, mirroring perhaps
the world around, praying to you –
A giver of boons, of wishes,
Your devotees surround you
Snakes coiling, ashes, unwashed ascetic
Power, intensity, the Lord of the Dances.
Images of you from childhood.
You live here as well, in this country
even in this antiseptic calmness.
In these pretty well ordered gardens,
there is sometimes a glimpse of a tail
of the King slithering, or an angry thunderstorm,
a harbinger of your fierce dancing.
Sometimes the sun scorches here, and the floods
remind one of the Destroyer in you.
And it’s comforting to see
whether in anger or in calmness
The Shiva in this land as well.
To know the all-pervading
everything of Shiva here, as in that
distant Himalayas bound land.
By Mona Dash