After the Raj [*POEM*]

After  the  Raj


We crossed the Indian Ocean, setting sail
From Bombay. I can’t remember the wind
On my face, so long ago, or recall
What made us leave that magic land behind.
I have sweet memories that I play over:
The moss green waters of the mountain lake
At Naini Tal, when I was young for ever,
And dazzling  stars kept all of us awake.

There by the Ganges where my father stood,
Fishing in the foothills of the Himalayas,
There I too drank the air and understood
All this would end one day, both play and players—
All history a dream from heaven sent.
The ship plowed through the waves and so we went.

8 thoughts to “After the Raj [*POEM*]”

  1. can I ever relate to that, I remember Naini Tal after Haldwani on the way to the Kumoun/Garwal hills and Lord Curzon trekking region with Nanda Devi peak (I think Naini and Nanda depict the same thing) … and how through all the intervening years the magic progressively ceded space to quotidian misery, dimming of the light, raucous homegrown tourists parading their Ray-bans and big-lens cameras, social scaffolding sagging gnawed by termites of venality and betrayal, brahmins and dalits comingling into the same mongrel heap … I’d be scared to go back now, like spotting once diaphanous girl I knew in school now bedraggled hooking on the street corner.

    at least the memories are refreshed by such poems, the purity increasing with temporal distance.

  2. The happy days, they are no more . . . *SIGH*

    Here are 3 lines for Xanadu from one of my favourite Catholic poets: Francis Thompson.

    “Where is the land of Luthany,
    And where the region Elenore?
    I do faint therefor.”

    Complete disenchantment with the world around us and a passionate longing for the Earthly Paradise, that is the essence of Xanadu’s poetry and personal life.

    Early memories of India, a vanished raj, the lush Himalayan foothills, the exotic land of man-eating tigers and lotus-strewn lakes, these lovely evocations of a buried past seem to haunt our poet. All the more so as the India of today is a grotesque parody of the India of the past. I am acquainted with India, as Lobro is, and I too can confirm that the reality of India is an acute disappointment compared to the storybook dream.

    Today, India can only be enjoyed if you have pots of money and can afford to put up in 5-star hotels. Maybe life in simple ashrams, if you can find them, can also be enjoyed by the genuine seeker after oriental wisdom.

    I believe India invented the zero. Good for them! Where would the Rothschilds and the Soroses be without a few zeros tagged on the end
    of their checks? 🙂

  3. Then the goddess of learning Sarasvatī, the divine consort of the Supreme Lord, said thus to Brahmā who saw nothing but gloom in all directions, “O Brahmā, this mantra, viz., klīṁ kṛṣṇāya govindāya gopī-jana-vallabhāya svāhā, will assuredly fulfill your heart’s desire.”
    Śrī brahma-saṁhitā 5.24

    Wishing you the best of health and good humour.


    You can do better than this.

    This is not a trashy chatroom site for racist wisecracks about Indian cloakroom attendants. This is a serious poem and it deserves a serious response.

    1. There’s no getting away from it:
      trashy minds make trashy comments.
      But there is hope for the Realist.
      He is, I think, capable of much better. 🙂

      His sense of humour, I hope, will be his salvation.

      1. (Completely off-topic though on-topic to me,
        a serious comment, not trashy chatroom trivia):

        I don’t know what happened after the raj . . . but in the West after The Church was TOTALLY USURPED in October 1958 by the Vat II novus ordo boomers and their co-religionists, the do-your-own-thing hippies turned Saint Francis of Assisi into a long-haired “brother sun sister moon” peace-luv-and-understanding make-Love-not-war flower-child and green-tea-drinking granola-munching tree-hugging leftist WOKE.

        Today, the 18th Sunday after 𝓟entecost, is the Commemoration of Saint Francis of Assisi.

        More info about the Religion/Faith of Saint Francis of Assisi:

  5. After Ryckaert, there is no one left who can speak Latin around here. What happened to Darkmoon after Ryckaert is the same thing that happened to the Catholic Church after the Second Vatican Council, there’s no one left who can speak Latin. Everything is vulgar now, so to speak.

    1. Several people on this site know a bit of Latin and at least two people known to me can read Latin fluently and even write it.

      What difference does it make anyway?

      Knowing Latin will not (1) help you to get an average job; (2) will not help you to find a nice wife or husband; (3) will not help you to keep your children happy. (4) will not help you to find happiness or wisdom; and (5) will not help you to to get into heaven.

      All the evil popes knew Latin. Even The Devil had read the Bible in Latin and could quote it like a Classical scholar.

      Remember all this the next time you speak up in support of Latin! 🙂

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