Saturday, April 10, 2010

First Glimpses & Lost Times

This is dedicated to the ladies in the KGBVs (Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalayas)  in the tribal areas of Madhya Pradesh who gave me the most amazing and memorable times in the most unexpected corners.  The early morning chats around the fires as they cooked for the 100 boisterous girls who had come away from homes to study and learn a different world. The endless questions. The shocked expressions on learning the difference in the world. And the pure love and affection shown in the simplest, most touching manners- a cup of tea on a cold morning made specially for me, the water heated up for me, the special pieces of sweets, the walks to the market to get me something to remember them by (as if I would need to be reminded!). That Blue Chain around my ankle is my constant source of peace and agitation to definitely do something for people like Ginabai. Who love a stranger unconditionally. So easily. It stuns me when i think of it everyday. Ginabai and the Ladies - - - I miss you.


I look out the window
at the moving scenery
Into the pseudo-darkness
I see hills far into the distance
Like a mirage in the desert.
Shimmering in the first rays
of this new day.

Not a soul in sight
Left or right.
Seemed such a sorry plight.
And then,
They appeared.
tall, dark and significant.
And starkly beautiful.
Seemed like life emerging
out of a deep dead cemetery.
dark, thick, misty and ominous.
Yet full of hope.

And as the sun
showeth its glory
on this desert land,
I came to realise,
It wasn't all sand.
There was greenery.
Majestic mountains.Sublime trees.
beautiful smiles.

And strange and unknown
as this land so is,
it evoked nostalgia.
Of a people
who became my own.
In another similar strange harsh land.
In a short period of time.
Unlike any other kind.
And that warmed my heart.
On a cold winter dawn.
Encouraged my feet.
To take the step.
The many many steps.
Towards a better future.
All in remembrance
of those wonderful people.

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