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Written in honour of Sashimani Devi, the last of India's Jagannath Temple dancers, who died this week, March 2015 aged 92.

SASHIMANI DEVI

Me_cafe_rougeby Jake Murray25 Mar 2015

SASHIMANI DEVI

As a child, dark hair
in curled braids
you danced before
your god, alive to the
rhythm of all creation.

Your mother taught you;
you were the last
to sing the hymns,
to deck the chamber,
prepare the garlands

of rainbow colours
in honour of your Lord.
A girl’s laughter,
a woman’s voice,
old, grey-haired,
throat hoarse,

you still moved in time,
keeping the dance
alive,
the Temple warm
with your smile.

Now you are gone,
I see you, young and
old again,
in your glory, ancient
head thrown back

in the darkness,
breathless, dancing
to music
only you can hear,
at peace in the

veil of night.

(Written in honour of Sashimani Devi,
the last of India's Jagannath Temple dancers,
who died this week aged 92)