After a city tour, also Ashoka Pillar, Thai temple, Stupa at Sarnath,
to which we added the Banaras Hindu University’s campus –
including the new Vishwanath temple – that students frequent:
we reached the Ganges at Assi Ghat, after the arati had commenced.
A number of young women rushed to us – as a swarm of locusts;
buzzing around – into making us buy their last leaf boats with diyas
of candle – that lit, along with flowers and incense are floated –
by those seeking to make a solemn wish, or purely in reverence.
After offerings to Ganges, we hired a motorboat for a long ride –
which would be tough on a rowboat in high tide – at this time:
to go past ghats lining Banaras – ending its enhanced facade at Rajghat,
painting an exquisite sight over the canvas of balmy dimming sky.
Glittering silhouettes of ghats, distinct in architectural constructs –
breezed by as if in a motion picture we might be viewing from our car,
in an amphitheatre or at a drive-in open-air theatre complex:
titles extoled on the horizon, rousing images of the ghat’s heritages.
A jarring motor sound disrupted the quiet, barring conversation,
over that insects hounded us – attacking our faces, hands and neck:
yet they couldn’t diminish the exquisiteness and bliss of these flashes –
as we focused on relishing every moment – in spite of life’s deterrents.
The Banaras Hindu University’s front facade…from our car, as we’re leaving.
The floating diya…