It is festive time
To please yourself
Yet, I’m sorry to say
It doesn’t appease me.
You must be
Of drums and beats
That scare away the birds
And animals on the streets.
May be, there are old people
Resting nearby in the very same
Streets through which your
Clamorous procession proceeds.
May be, a baby is in deep slumber.
May be, a child is having his exams.
May be, someone is reeling under
High fever. Needs some rest, if only
You could feel and see their stress
That keeps rising…the more your
Blaring mikes reach their crescendos.
What about the waters of my rivers
That swell up with tears…they know
At the end of the day, when the
Pooja culminates, the Pratima is
Immersed for Visarjan,
Their flora and fauna will take the brunt
Of all the plastic, the lead and mercuric
Colours, the numerous poly bags,
That float all over…
My waters blow up with carcasses
In the burning ghats, as if that wasn’t
Enough, now you do it all the year
Through…some Pooja or the other,
And my fish and crabs, turtles and frogs,
The shells and corals, the molluscs, you name it,
I have it in varied forms: my aquatic life
Pays the price for your water pollution.
Not to mention the noise pollution -
That comes with every Pooja celebration.
Why make a hue and cry, why publicise
Religion, why commercialise it, why not
Offer silent prayers to your temple deity?
I’m omniscient. I know it all…
Your desires and wishes.
I know you love me.
No need to overflow with so many emotions
That disturb the peace and tranquility
Of the environment.
Please preserve its sanctity.
Do not detonate it with all your commotion.
Religion should be heartfelt devotion.
Not a razzmatazz of pomp and show.
Remember me in your silent prayers,
Why upset the eco balance with your
Irreverent actions of religious fervour?
Worship me as Kali, Durga, Lakshmi.
I may be also your Saraswati. You also
See me as Brahma, Vishnu, Shiva, Ganesha.
So many forms, myriad tales of my myths.
But leave out nature from the pain and agony
You inflict on its plants, birds and animals.
Don’t malign religion
With noise pollution
And water pollution.