Why God Smiles

The first of the drops fell

One man upon whom the blessing graced

Cried, overcome with passion:

That’s my prayer brought down this drop!

Then fell a second, a third

Twenty drops, a hundred

A second man, ecstatic his tone:

My prayer answered!

A third raised his hands up to the heavens

In gratitude

Twenty men kissed the crackling earth

A hundred men danced for joy

The drops fell

The drizzle turned to rain

Everyone rejoiced

For a day

Another day

And a half


Three days, five days later

What was divine benevolence

Now overwhelmed

What was a shower

Now a deluge!

The first man pointed his finger at the second

The second at the third

The third at the twenty

The twenty at the hundred

Each accusing the other

Of praying too hard

Of praying inconsistently

Of praying devotion-lessly…

Up in the heavens

God smiled as always

Going about His work

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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her words to sensitize her readers about environmental issues, mental health, and the need to break the shackles of an outdated society.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.