New blog post MOHENJODARO



I wrote this when I visited Mohenjodaro on my second trip to India and the Far East.  I sat upon the base of that half crumbled stupa they call the Mound of the Dead, looking out over the deep black shadows of the foundations of the ancient city laying stark and mysterious under the moonlight, and I was inspired to poetry.




Vanished ages, lost in dust,

Where even ghosts no longer walk the silent streets,

An end to life, to love and death and lust,

Where infinity, eternity, and all and nothing meet.


Vanished ages, shrivelled by the sun,

Scorched wind-blown sands, and savage, searing skies,

Their cities crumbled, their glories past and gone,

Their trampled grave-dust, scattered, powdered, lies.


Vanished ages, their ruins mantle death,

So dimly known, so far, so very far away,

Their voices hushed, their breasts are stilled of breath

They sleep -- Or do they sleep? -- today.


Where are they now?

Those princes proud, and kings,

Who sailed their gilded boats so nobly by,

Who ruled o'er all that loves and laughs or sings,

From citadel and palaces on high.


Where are they now?

 Those priests of dark and light,

Who preached of mystic gods in sun and stars,

Who stirred the love of day with fear of night,

While placating the moon with maiden’s hearts.


Where are they now?

 Those maidens fair and bold,

Who smiled and coyly turned a laughing eye,

Where are they now?

Those youths so long grown old,

Who dared to love, to live, and then to die.


Where are they now?

Those heroes, villains, knaves,

Their brave men and their cowards, and their fools,

Their generals, and their soldiers, and their slaves.

Where are they now, in Time's dark depthless pool?


Where are they now?

They still are here!

Laughing, loving, slaying, as before.

Pressing down new footsteps sharp and clear,

Playing out the game of life reborn.


For I am they!

And you are they!

Forever on Time s wheel of joy and pain,

All has happened -- all has passed away --

And all must pass, and pass,

And pass again!