The Night of Shiva in Mauritius


In spiritual life, each aspirant seeks and appeases his spiritual hunger according to his belief, taste or talent. 

Grand Bassin, dotingly called ‘Ganga Talao’, is a Crater Lake situate in a secluded mountain area in the South of Mauritius. Nestled deep in the core recess of the heart of the island, Grand Bassin is recognized as a sacred lake and a replica of the Holy Ganges by the Hindu populace.  Every year, thousands of pilgrims from the four corners of the island converge to its precincts; they collect the sacred water of the lake, to offer to Lord Shiva, on the occasion of Maha Shivratree or ‘The Night of Shiva’. This year, the Night of Shiva is celebrated on 24 February. Zealous pilgrims from the north, the east and the west have started to trek to the south since Friday last, blessed by the intermittent drizzles of the rainy season.




Graceful, gorgeous white skinned Lord!

You wear the moon on your head,

You are the elixir of life,

Remover of pain and suffering;


Immutable, powerful three-eyed Lord!

You are the embodiment of light,

Bestower of joy and ecstasy,

Destroyer of darkness and ignorance;


My song is a prayer to you,

My dance is worship to you,

My body is your temple,

My soul belongs to you!

Anita Bacha

Illustration/Photography/ Anita Bacha

Illustration Video/ Courtesy of Flying Freaks Aerial Cinematography





Your name, I wrote in the sand,
The sand washed away;
Your name, I have forgotten;
Your smile haunts me still;
Your mouth too,
Small and pouting,
Sweet and sour, as a ripe Chinese shrub guava,
Red in craving;
Your eyes,
Yeah, your eyes!
Secretive, mysterious, impossible to unveil,
Bury the covert affairs that you relished,
Enclosing forever your secret!
Love of one night!
Love of a summer holiday!
As the sand slides between my fingers,
Your silhouette slips away from me,
Disappears in the skyline,
Swept away by the waves,
Leaving behind,
The silence,
which is killing me.

Anita Bacha

Illustration/Photography/Anita Bacha



A poem inspired by the Sega dancers of Mauritius. Originally the Sega dance was performed by enslaves around a bonfire to spend their lonely nights and to protest against injustices. The Sega is sung in the local dialect, Creole, and the musical instruments, the most popular being the ‘ravanne’ and the ‘triangle’ are made locally. In our time, a tourist entertainment, the Sega is danced by all.


Intoxicated with the elixir of love,

My head spins with the fiery beats of the tropical drums,

As my body swirls and whirls with the rhythmic vibes

The burning sand scorching the sole of my feet,

I dance and I dance in ecstasy!

Imbued with passion, my heart soars high above,

Like a shooting star in broad day light

Falls back in the blue lagoon with candid delight

I dance and I dance in ecstasy!

Shrouded in a mist of mirage,

In the horizon I see your image.

In frantic folly I run to tenderly hold you…

The mystic drums stop me,

The enchanting melody beckons me,

Lifts me up and invigorates me,

Fills my soul with bursting fantasy,

I dance and I dance in ecstasy.
Anita Bacha
Illustrative photography/Anita Bacha


Festival of Lights 

Hello my loving friends and followers, 

In Mauritius and all around the world, Hindus are celebrating DIVALI, the Festival of Lights tonight 

There are many religious, cultural and traditional reasons for this celebration depending on the region where you live or from where you originate in India 

But wherever we are in the world, we celebrate the victory of Light over darkness, of Goodness over wrongdoing and of Knowledge over ignorance ❤️


My maid passed away just after I left Mauritius for the London Book Fair 2016

 There is a line, though not a straight one, between the people who serve us and the success of our career.

 How much they contribute by their service cannot be grossly overestimated.

The adage ‘the servant is the master of the house’ suddenly found its meaning under my bewildered eyes when I opened the main entrance door of my domicile.

 Heavy festoons of cobweb, rat pooh littered like black seeds of grapes on the floor layered with a carpet of thick dust greeted me.

I breathed in the foul smell of decayed garbage and dead bodies of rats putrefying under the teak furniture.

My nostrils and my throat smarted. I turned back. I rushed out for a breath of fresh air.

 Rats were her nightmares.

She laid traps for them.

Death laid a trap for her when an oncoming car knocked her down on the road.

 Ironically, Buddha says: Life is a wheel.

In the olden days, to keep them subservient, house maids were not allowed to use their minds creatively. My maid, a stout Creole woman in her forties, had a good education and she followed a course in housekeeping. She ran my house as her own. I was totally lost without her. She was the mistress of the house. My sense of humanity allowed this.

Anita Bacha




Mauritius, a former British colony, won its independence in March 1968. Simultaneously, 300 (official) and more children left the country in intercountry adoption until the year 1988. In that year, intercountry adoption became under the strict control of the Government. In 1993, Mauritius as a party State of The Hague Conference signed the Hague Intercountry Adoption Convention on the Protection of Children and Co-operation between States.

I dedicate this poem to all the Mothers of the World

 My Birth Mother and My Adoptive Mother

Her shiny brown eyes like ripe tamarind pulp

 Her olive color skin, her long flowing black hair

Her cute oval face and sweet, crying voice

Her fragrance, vetiver interlaced with wild musk

Tore my heart apart as I let go of her linen camisole

She is my mother!

 Locked in her arms, I snuggle, forgetful of the world

Throwing my legs and arms in gleeful abandon

I yawn

Languidly I open my eyes

 Her loving, sky blue gaze

Her porcelain white skin glowing in the sun light

Her golden curls dancing around her pretty face

Her perfume, carnation interlaced with red rose

Fill my heart as I bury my head in her silken stole

She is my mother!

Mother is the one who renounced me

Mother is the one who found me

Mother Is

Mother always will be

 Anita Bacha

Processed with Moldiv

Processed with Moldiv