Mira Khadka, Jan 2024

Surrounded by Himalayan mountains
gazing at the Milky Way
I was resting in my yellow tent
I heard whispers
and I started walking
I couldn’t tell if I was dreaming or sleepwalking
but I kept hiking through mighty mountains
suddenly I stopped
I saw a gathering
the spirit of mountains and rivers
and animals, plants and birds
gathered for a funeral
a small glacier died
I saw mountains wailing for melting glaciers
and rivers praying to Ganga
they were worried about their future
and the lives of people,
they have been feeding for years
the voices got louder and louder
and I couldn’t stand there, thinking
how ignorant we are
and then I woke up, in my yellow tent
I still hear those voices sometimes
calling me
and I wonder, if there was another funeral

Mira Khadka is a PhD researcher at Carnegie Mellon University, focusing on researching mountain glaciers and their impact on water resources. She is engaged in science communication and is dedicated to raising awareness about climate change. In addition to her academic interests, she finds joy in spending time in nature, enjoys reading philosophy and spirituality books, and finds solace in practicing yoga and meditation. Poetry serves as a means for her to connect with herself, the environment, and the global community.

Cover photo: Pasang Kaji Sherpa

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Rojita Sharma, June 2023

According to the Murphy’s law, anything that can go wrong will go wrong
You knew that industries would suffocate the roots of rivers
You knew that cutting trees would abort the new bump on the hills
You knew that vehicles would replace the adventure of the streams
You knew that concrete would kill the whole generations of the glaciers
You knew that they will go wrong, you were sure of it 

And this year, it didn’t rain for months
The winter went by
No November rain, this year
No February snowfall
But the smog everywhere
The rivers – the rocks
no shiny mountains but the black stones
and the lake on the base camps!

They said that the temperature, this year, is rising
Future is predictable
rough mountains, rocky hills, cracked land
Oh the mother earth, how are you breathing?
How are you surviving?
The scorching sunrays are drifting our soul from the body

On the other side of the world, all day it rained
they said that the city has been collapsed
Dismantled houses, dismantled families, dismantled emotions
People are crying for the help
for the lost souls, lost shelter, food and clothes

The rain didn’t stop
But the hearts of the people 
They started blaming on the nature, the god, the creators
Cursing their country, their deeds, their values
For the lost souls, they couldn’t revive
For the lost shelter, they didn’t see
But only the heart, to take care of

Either way we are doomed by the catastrophe 
It’s true nothing is as easy as it looks
Oh rain! Mercy!

Rojita Sharma is an architect by profession. She feels alive while writing poems and painting. Born in the historic place, Bhaktapur, she grew up hearing ancient stories and songs while wandering around temples and squares. She believes reading books widens the vision and traveling broadens the thoughts. Studying sustainable social development for her graduate study made her vocal about promoting walkable sustainable cities through creative placemaking. She is an active member of Dead Poet Society Nepal.

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