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MURALI VADANA by Madhava Lata Dasi

At the age of eighteen I traveled from my home in Italy to India on a personal spiritual search…
My journey ended in an ashram in Vrindavana, or Vraja. The early nights in the ashram were long, hot and humid. But they became tolerable by the mesmerizing sound of Veena singing. I loved sitting in her room listening to her poetic songs.
Once, Veena taught me how to write a poem: She asked me to visualize an emotion and consider how to express it in words. So I started writing. From then on whenever I felt impelled to write my realizations, or feelings, or emotions, it was natural for me to express it through poetry.
To me, poetry is the language of the soul on this long path to surrender and to love. As a practitioner of bhakti yoga, I need to cultivate a soft heart. Poetry helps me greatly in this sense. I was taught that in bhakti yoga the ultimate goal is "never to forget Krsna", so my poetry is mostly about Krishna.
The book Gopala Champu by Jiva Goswami inspired this poem. My poem is called Murali Vadana, which is a name for Krishna when he holds the flute to His lips, stealing the minds and hearts of his devotees with his enchanting melodies. My poem is about God’s longing for souls. Especially his beloved Radha, the Queen of Vraja: that wonderful place where every breeze, every season, every horizon and every landscape become fuel for Krishna’s amorous heart. In Krishna’s lonesome reminiscing of Radha’s love for him, he plays his flute, calling her, and all of us, back to his divine sweetness. 
Murali Vadana
 In the taste of water
is Krishna,

His blue skin 
His infinity 
in the oceans

and in the enveloping skies

for all rests in Him,

while in His mind

dwells beauty, pleasure and rasa,

but only in Vraja

His love thickens

and His blue hue deepens

as a swollen rainy cloud,

and only there

His flute, in an enchanting sound,

brings about the autumn

of playful breezes,

Painting by Harish Kumar
and on an inviting note

agitating the minds

He calls to dance

under the moonlight

and a festival of scales,

tunes, tones, tinkling and trills

captures the hands, the bodies, and the feet.

But this eons-long night of rasa

Painting by Harish Kumar
seems to vanish

in one note of His raga,

and when the horizon swallows

His nocturnal secrecy of mellows,

still inebriated of pleasure,

He gazes at the peeping light

and by the beauty

of His lotus petal-like eyes

Art by Rachana Saurahb
blends of pink

the dawn of sleepless night.

And once alone, aloof,

Up there, on the devoted Hill

pensively, standing

shaded by the tree,

He remembers the White Lotus

whirling, adorned by a moonbeam,

oozing a fragrant dew

Art by Subharata Das
Of shiny drops.

And when caressed softly,

by the cooling petal of His hand

slipped like pearls 
between His fingers,

where now the notes of His flute linger

giving away His thoughts

in soulful melodic strains

of His longing

for meeting Radha once again.

 Madhava Lata Dasi: “Though I am originally from Italy, today I live in India in the very South, in the State of Kerala where I own a small hotel named the Paradesh Inn facing the Arabian Ocean. For 6 months it is open and our customers are mostly Yogi/Yogini who retreat in this area every year for weeks of full immersion. (For video of hotel click here) I follow Bhakti Yoga and writing poems is part of my meditation on Krishna, since I draw inspiration for my poems from the many books I read about Him.  I usually publish my poems on my blog here.

~If you are interested in seeing your poetry appear in this blog, or submitting a poem by a woman that has inspired you, please click here for submission guidelines. I greatly look forward to hearing from you!~


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