How’d I ever write of anyone but you, O Kashi!
Lord Shiva, the destroyer of all desires,
How burnt he in his desire for return!
I too, with closed eyes come to you
And roam in the lanes I lived in-
A restless, haunter
Of my city,
My ghats, my and lanes and days with you.

My uncle, exile, he wept for his Kashi,
And used to say:

“The man who loved you most
Was cursed to stay away forever.”

A curse, they say, is curse
When heart it burns.

The old curse fell.
This time,
On me.
The curse of living away,
Of never coming back
To you, O Kashi!


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