Kaliyuga No More

Whoever said that Time’s up?
With quarantined days and death fast approaching―
That our days established by morning alarms
For a frantic fever pitch are numbered?
That no more will we gather at lunch breaks
To snatch fad stories and recipes for weight loss?
That our children will no longer lead a school life
Accentuated with marks and un-mindful lessons?
That movie times with popcorn and family
Of fizzling memories, will be a thing of the past?
That the heroes of glorified sport and politics
Will play in no arena audience by frenzied money?
That designer wear and diamonds, stilettos, and splurges
Will make not one a Mondaine anymore?
Whoever said that Time’s up?

Time’s never up for the quarantined living 
Counting the moments of quarantined dread
And waiting with impatient consternation
The release from socially isolated prison walls
So life can be at its fear-ruled best once again.

But Time definitely is up for the quarantined living
Contenting the moments of quarantined blessing
Accepting with calm composure a spiritual evolution
And the freedom that sublime solitude bestows 
When fear dies and minds die
And all of life in glorious hues bloom to happiness again―
Then Time’s up for alarm clocks and weight loss diets
For unmindful existence and frenzied makeup
For Mondaine’s, material fantasies, and hero worship
For popcorn and false family fraternity.

Then Time’s up, for in the radiance of the die-mind
All heaviness dissipates and moments become timeless.
Asato ma sadgamaya
Castaway the claustrophobic untruth to merge with the Truth
Tamaso ma jyotirgamaya
Extinguish the inert ignorance so the light of wisdom glows
Overcome the fear of death and embrace immorality
Om Shanti! Shanti! Shanti!

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Vidya Shankar
Vidya Shankar, a widely published Indian poet, writer, editor, English teacher, and a “book” in the Human Library, says poetry is not different from her. A recipient of literary awards and recognition, she uses the power of her words to sensitize her readers about environmental issues, mental health, and the need to break the shackles of an outdated society. Vidya is the author of two poetry books, The Flautist of Brindaranyam (in collaboration with her photographer husband, Shankar Ramakrishnan), and The Rise of Yogamaya (an effort to create awareness about mental health.) She finds meaning in her life through yoga and mandalas.