Sunday, May 19, 2013


[written to a tune from the evening ceremony in veranassi that got stuck in my head]

we want your money, we want your cash,
so please give us leave to sell you our trash,
to shave your beard, to tell you you're weird,
we'll give you our food so your mouth will be seared.

can you count our gods, or our people?
there'll always be more once you've had your fill!
we'll keep on pushing and never stop
not caring or worrying if you've blown your top.

don't you want to buy flowers?
it's good for your karma and earns you powers!
we'll take some more money to let you bathe;
the ganga will cleanse you: hey, look! you're saved!

fecal matter is strewn on the floor
enhancing the smell of the wretchedly poor;
our holy men, they all stare vacantly,
surrounded by vermin, and louts, and pee.

how did you know that i'm selling things?
what gave it away? is it all of my rings?
don't worry, no business, just come with me -
to my brother's shop where the items are free!

come to my temple i'll sell you some drugs,
whatever you want, power, wisdom and hugs;
our temple's your temple, just take off your shoes,
here we will sit and discuss all your blues.

don't you say no, it's impolite!
you have to agree if you'd see the light;
we have all the time in the world to spare,
picking your pockets with politeness and care.

come aboard! of course you need a boat!
it's cheap, you can row, or we can just float;
watch out for the goats, they'll eat anything:
the plastic, the paper, your brand new gold ring.

no rickshaw, no rickshaw, no boat, no silk!
please let go of my hands, you are making me ill.
oh, when will these touts and this begging cease?
stop touching my feet! let me stand here in peace!

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