last day of summer, first nights of autumn (1.2)

i have just come back from seattle, u.s., where i spent the most beautiful two weeks with my beloved saṅgha of Śabda Institute. i am taking this opportunity to express my gratitude for this dream, as well as for the beautiful summer that has unravelled. these months of sun were rich with expansion, laughter, warmth. i am thankful to have been held by loved ones and, most importantly, held within myself, while She painted the path in resplendent hues.

☀️ most monumentally, i traversed the u.k. with my saṅgha and Gurus in deep exploration of rasa (sanskrit for juice, flavour or essence of an experience.)🍯 our rasa tour culminated with a workshop in london centred on emotional healing, which additionally was the first u.k. workshop of Śabda Institute. words fail to express how exquisite and cellularly transformational this journey has been. it was a privilege to share this space with our beloved teachers and imbibe in the magnificent teachings together with the saṅgha. check out @sabda_institute for more photos, reels & accounts of both the workshop. the pure joy of being!

☀️ i soaked in sun and beauty in italia with my beloved family, who unrelentingly teach me about love, patience, and openness, and never cease to hold the mirror to show me the muck that i am to work on and through – even when it is incredibly uncomfortable to look. i dipped my toes in the sea in my home-country and burnt my skin with joy, met up with olden friends and laughed ’til our bellies hurt while reminiscing past silliness and childish cruelties.

☀️ finally, i came together with my saṅgha sisters and conducted the most nourishing pūjā to our beloved Gaṇapati, whose playfulness and delight infused our every offering.

may we have the eyes and heart to see Her sweetness permeating all that is!

samhain contemplations

happy halloween & a blessed samhain to those celebrating either of them! this has always been my favourite period of the year (and not just because it coincides with my bday!) – but more on this some other time. 🖤

today, i’ve thought of the eve of samhain 2019. i was in the midst of restless seeking, and wanted guidance as i was heading into my early twenties. celebrations of samhain were being held in my town, and i wound up having my runes read by a local practitioner. i talked about my longing, and talked about my seeking, before asking whether i should ‘walk that path’. i was indeed guided to deepen my inquiry, but was told: “you are already walking ‘the path’; the path is your life.”

i did not understand what that meant until, almost a year later, i discovered non-dual śaiva-śāktism and proceeded to meet my beloved teacher, who taught me that sādhanā is my life. my sādhanā is not separate mystique which excludes the mundane, or the day-to-day muck – it encompasses and it is the very mundane. i continue to cultivate this understanding every day with her guidance, and this has been my contemplation as i become one year older, and hopefully wiser!

“Every choice, every thought, and every action that occurs daily takes us one step toward or away from bliss. Nothing can be excluded in our pursuit of bliss: the way we brush our teeth, greet our spouse, look in the mirror, talk to the waitress, drive our car, prepare our food, eat our meals, exercise our body, nurture our mind, and relate to our children.”

“The path will light itself in such a way that one day, you will turn around and see that your entire life has been a stream of miracles.”

Dr. Kavitha Chinnaiyan, The Heart of Wellness

letters, cuts

*scattered poems published in scan lancaster, february 2020. they belong to a collection of poetry i compiled which chronicles the various stages of coping with grief. written a few years ago…

01. 01. 2018

dear A,

it’s been three years since i’ve lost you

and i swear i am trying.

i bought a shiny yoga mat

and i do yin yoga for grief release.

i ground my feet,

do warrior poses

and chant.

i try,

but no matter how much i contort my body at dawn

my sorrow rips through my brain

and sticks to my eyelids.

10. 02. 2018

most beloved A,

i wear my loss

like i wear my rings.

11. 02. 2018

darling A,

i swear i’m trying.

i’ve stopped reading sylvia plath

and i bookmark poems

about the universe that is supposedly unfolding in my core.

i read self-help articles about how pain is grace,

grinding my teeth.

i write inspirational quotes on purple notebooks

and i make bullet-points about buddhism

with pink pens.

i press the tips onto the paper


as if to push what i write through me.

i beg my mind to meditate

i put on compilations of “deep relaxing & healing music with instant relief from stress”

and i force myself to still.

i download apps that ease anxiety

and i go to meditation groups on wednesdays.

but, no matter how long i stay cross-legged on the floor,

straightening my back and linking my thumbs,

it hurts.

25. 02. 2018

my dearest A,

i quit drinking

and i made new friends.

friends that drink hot chocolate

friends that watch soft films

friends that pray in the evenings

instead of drowning in face paint

and sprawling on dance floors.

they meet for coffee

they talk about how simple life is

and i nod when my heart clenches.

30. 02. 2018

beloved A,

my brain is softly melting to the floor

04. 03. 2018

ever dearest A,

i’ve been reading about the cycle of rebirth

i wish to believe in it,

but scepticism clouds my heart.

i’m not pure enough for transcendence

so if i am reborn

i wish i could be as small

as a sparrow.

11. 04. 2019

dear A,

i’m unsure where loss ends

        and i begin.

                                                                                                                                  with longing,

                                                                                                                                  T. ☼

brief sonnet to sorrow by téa nicolae















* original format:

* happy december, my loves! as 2020 is slowly coming to end, i am bringing back this poem which was published on The Writing Disorder in summer, as i believe that it encapsulates my year beautifully; fully.

I, Lalla

🕊 kneeling at the cradle of the skies and the seas,
she prays with her hips
and she asks the Earth for forgiveness. 🕊

~ these are my favourite lines from an ending poem belonging to my final year project: a devotional collection about the feminine mystique. while writing it, my greatest influence was Lalleshwari, who also is my favourite poetess. i’ve been fondly thinking of her today as i revisited my poems. from her collection “I, Lalla”:

🌙 Wrapped up in Yourself, You hid from me.
All day I looked for You
and when I found You hiding inside me,
I ran wild, playing now me, now You. 🌙

🌙 As the moonlight faded, I called out to the madwoman,
eased her pain with the love of the One.
‘It’s Lalla, it’s Lalla,’ I cried, waking up the Loved One.
I mixed with Him and drowned in a crystal lake. 🌙

🌙 I wore myself out, looking for myself.
No one could have worked harder to break the code.
I lost myself in myself and found a wine cellar. Nectar, I tell you.
There were jars and jars, and no one to drink it. 🌙

i aimed to emulate her character into the female voice i created: an embodied woman devoted to the supranatural, whose esoteric experiences were deeply personal, imperfect and feminine. 💜 Lalla (or Lal Ded) was an enchanting Kashmiri mystic and saint, who created the prominent style of spiritual poetry known as “vakhs”. she wrote heart-wrenching, devotional poetry to Lord Śiva, who she was enamoured with. she wore nothing but the tresses of her long hair and lived the life of an ascetic: she renounced all worldly possessions and would wander, bare, sharing her wisdom and teachings. some lauded and worshipped her, some threw rocks at her, but she paid no mind. she wrote:

🌙 They may abuse me or jeer at me,
They may with flowers worship me.
What profits them whatever they do?
I am indifferent to praise and blame.
Can a few ashes a mirror befoul? 🌙

^ i wish to tread through life so wildly. 🩰😊 excited to share this collection of mine with you in the (far) future, when the time is right. 💜

me treading through life coyly in portugal, where i hope to relocate one day. i have kept adding photos to this website, although i never thought i would do that at first. but, i don’t know, i feel vaguely nostalgic, times are changing quickly, i’m growing out of my mermaid hair… and there is longing inside of me to share, to connect, as i am, clumsy and … lost… and me….

Poem to Kālī Ma


a blessed Diwali, dear ones! today i am sharing a short (but dear!) devotional poem i wrote sometime ago, which was shared here in summer.

i place my loss
on a gold platter with silver rings
and offer it
to Kālī,
the divine mother of the universe.

i burn my loss on incense sticks
and dampen it with cold water.
i place quartz stones
on my loss and i beg.

i adorn my loss with scarlet flowers
and fresh apples.
i offer my loss to Kālī
and beg her to eat it.

sink your teeth in my loss, mother
drink my pain
swallow my worry
and inhale my woe.


i met Reva in October 2019 during some incredible & transformational days at Mandala Yoga Ashram, where i was touched by her devotion & gentleness. so i was especially moved & honoured when she invited me to contribute to her brand new website with a poem about Devī! 💕🌷🕊💙 the painting of Tārā is the creation of my friend and mentor, Rashmi Thirtha Sacred Arts Studio: and the pūjā book got me through some dark times two years ago – or pulled me through the keyhole, for those familiar with that Kālī metaphor…

may there be light!

photos of the shrine i adorned for this occasion, dedicated to Kālī and Tārā.

on this blessed day, also sharing a glimpse of grace… these mesmerising artworks, painted by the divinely talented Rashmi, have recently arrived at my doorstep from the US 💫 i am truly enchanted! i fell in love with Rashmi’s art while attending a life-changing retreat on the wisdom of the Mahāvidyās led by two brilliant beings who transformed my life, Kavitha M.D. (whom i am now blessed to call my teacher) and Christopher Hareesh Wallis. it feels surreal that only a few months later these pieces are adorning my room and i am thanking Rashmi not as a stranger, but as a mentor and friend: thank you once again, i will treasure these deeply! pictured: MahāLakṣmī, Lalitā yantra, Kālī yantra, and currently framing a portrait of Tārā! the perfect birthday gift! 💙dear friends, be sure to check out Rashmi’s newly launched website. 🙂

twenty-two: outpouring grace

🌺🌼🌺 so, twenty-two! this morning i revisited two letters i wrote to myself: one as i entered my twenties, and the other as i turned seventeen. i was very touched. at age seventeen, depression had slipped into my every inch, and, at times, i was doubtful whether i was going to make it through my teens. looking back to my struggle is humbling. i am endlessly grateful for the enveloping grace that pushed me to become enamoured of life herself. my resolution and wish for this year is to become committed to loving what is, no matter what that looks like. thinking about this wondrously beautiful and painful year, i decided that twenty-one meant transformation, discipline and grace. twenty-one was marked by a few milestones: i completed my undergraduate degree and began my postgraduate studies; my poetry blossomed into a radically new direction, and my lyrical voice, at first so saddened and scattered, grew along with me, blooming into devotion and lushness as esotericism bound us together; i made amends with estranged friends and undertook my most mature projects to date –

🌺🌼🌺 most importantly, i found my beloved teacher, my Guruji (or she found me!) and my dear sangha. if my fidgety teens have been about constructing a sense of self that desperately wanted *more*: more accomplishments, more beauty, more connections, more validation, my twenties are about unbecoming: humbly peeling layers of my self and opening to the sweetness that glimmers through… and, if you look closely, “She is smiling at you from all things”… ❤️💕❤️

…She’s playing in my heart.
Whatever I think, I think Her name.
I close my eyes and She’s in there
Garlanded with human heads.

Common sense, know-how-gone,
So they say I’m crazy. Let them.
All I ask, my crazy Mother,
Is that You stay put.

Ramprasad cries out: Mother, don’t
Reject this lotus heart You live in
Don’t despise this human offering
At Your feet…


🌺 Ramprasad Sen 🌺

🌺 the flowers i’m holding were sent to me by my parents and i am wearing a mystic wig that made me fall back in love with dark hair. this was the first year that my family did not see me for my birthday due to travelling restrictions, so they sent me flowers. i fell in love with adorning my room with flowers in summer, when i spent my mornings offering fresh petals to Devi and nourishing my soul. 🌺❤️