Monday, September 15, 2008

The Terror of Grief


She wept inconsolably
lamenting, not just the death
of her grandson, but a cruel fate
that robbed our lives of the
innocent honesty which
snuffed out his tender life
turning us into fearful
untrusting souls


Why aren’t the skies in mourning
How does the sun smile so cheerfully
when hearts grieve, and
are cremated today
How can you shrug off terror
with gratitude for protection
of you and your beloved
How can anyone be safe, ever again
when this heart bleeds
Broken into a million pieces
with each passing day

© Gopika Nath

The Mangled Remains [13.9.2008]

Mangled Remains

Terror had struck again, claiming
unsuspecting victims of every kind
and there on the front page of the Times
of India, staring at me, pleading for peace
to avenge its unwitting sacrifice,
it seemed to say:

I gave up black for the benefit
of green, but nothing really changed
We still phut-phuttied along, barely
eking a living, aspired for but
couldn’t grab a space, in those
elevating walls of cement.
The shanties were our reservation

I remember the shock
of being thrown up into the air
and how my head smashed
onto the tarmac, wheels upturned
hitting the pavement, as the CNG cylinder
burst like a bomb, turning Gaffar market
into a panic-stricken hollow

Cowards were blamed for blasting
a peaceful neighbourhood, into this
ghost town of burning wounds
If truly at peace, wouldn’t
the silence have revealed mayhem
in minds, that passed by each day?

Did they ever hear my muffled screams
as I wobbled along, a comic character
on three wheels, gasping to keep up
with the sleek Toyota and Mercedes
pretending to be as cheerful as this
yellow cover, now blown to smithereens.

© Gopika Nath