I’m out of India at the moment, holidaying in Thailand, so my news about Indian politics and current events comes from online sources.

Obviously.

Sources like Twitter, for example.

Of late, it seems that social media, especially Twitter, has become increasingly toxic.

People don’t simply agree to disagree.

They berate, they insult.

All of which is to say that the news I’ve been reading about India, seen through such prisms of information, appears bitter and virulent.

I worry about India, I truly do.

I worry about apparent attempts to divide society along religious lines, and what that might do to the fabric of a society that was otherwise a glorious, heady mix of religion and language and regions and food and…well, everything that makes (made?) India, India.

It was in this reflective New Year mood, away from the country, that I read a poem by my friend Leslie Xavier, a sports journalist with a wonderfully poetic soul.

Since tomorrow, 6th January, also marks the end of the Christmas season, Leslie’s poem was both moving and timely:

Leslie, my friend, when you find that faraway nook, with its year-round Christmas vibe, promise you’ll let me know?

I’ll be there in a flash to join you.

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