Reetika Vazirani
September 1999




At the Society for the Promotion of Indian Classical Music & Culture Among Youth


At the Society for the Promotion of Indian Classical Music and Culture Among Youth,
Maestro plays a raga at dusk which means
God is powerful enough, and we have misery.
It's true, though downtrodden, we talk to God.

Maestro plays a raga at dusk which means
Groceries are on stage. (Symbolism for starving people.)
It's true, though downtrodden, we talk to God
(Thank you for the onions and cabbage.) But why

Are groceries on stage? Symbolism for starving people.
What will white people think of us? Corruption, poverty,
Thank you for the onions and cabbage. But why
Must the singer make sure the dreaded lament goes on?

What will white people think of us? Corruption, poverty,
Everyone feels devastated by the separation from God.
Must the singer make sure the dreaded lament goes on
For three hours? Happy New Year, it's the 21st century

(Everyone feels devastated by the separation from God).
On top of that my boyfriend slept with you out of state
For three hours. Happy New Year, it's the 21st century,
A moaning raga about restless humans and

On top of that my boyfriend slept with you. The out-of-state
Visitors (all white) walk out, they can't take it,
A roaring raga about jet-set humans and
the zany distribution of oil, gold, crack, cars, a world in which

Visitors (all white) walk out, they can't take it
At the Society for the Promotion of Indian Classical Music and Culture Among Youth . . . .
The zany distribution of oil, gold, crack, cars, a world in which
God is powerful enough and we've had misery.


The Southern Review, Spring 1998.