Ya devi sarva bhooteshu nidra roopena sansthita
Namastasyai namastasyai namastasyai namo namaha

Dvitiyai: Rest

Rest in peace.
All my sorrows, my disappointments, my hurt, my grief, my anger, rest in peace.
And at the end of the long, still, stifling night,
Come a little breeze, a little rest and a beautiful dawn.
Rest in peace.

Peace is every step.
So soldier on, keep walking, keep moving, like tin soldiers, in straitjackets,
in a concentration camp. Goosestep, misstep, step lightly.
There is no rest for the marching band
and peace is every step.

Step lightly, for you tread on my dreams.
Walk the treadmill as though it were a magic carpet
and break into a run as though on an alpine meadow.
Perpetual motion machines and bodies bathed in layers of sweat
like the seven cities of Delhi and the many layers of Mohenjodaro.
Carbon dating captures a moment but cannot capture
the lightstep of history.

History is bunk.
There is only this moment and in this moment is our entire past and future.
What is, is—without preface or post mortem—and all else is a figment of our
wild-running imaginations and unexpressed fantasies.
Bunk history class and forget your future. There is only this moment
of canteen chai and chhaya geet songs and childish interactions.

In my dreams, I walk an ever-accelerating treadmill
facing forward always and never getting anywhere.
And all this motion is pummeled with a thickening downpour
of words, raining crazy like tropical monsoons in a cyclonic wind.
I toss and turn, in the proverbially stormy and murky oceans
of samsara and maya, showing off every cliché and big word I know,
exhausted, unable to haul myself out, startling at every sound
and waking at every small twitch and whiff….

There is no rest.
Amma, there is no rest
except in the moment when you rest your hand on my heart
and still its panicked fluttering.
Your touch suffuses my soul with warmth and cools my fevered mind
and in your love, my heart and body know rest.
Peace is, then, in my every step,
and I live every moment as the moment of your touch.

Namastasyai namastasyai namastasyai namo namaha

September 28, 2003

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Go to Tritiyai.