At the end of fifty-five or sixty years
after one has retired,
and lives quietly, in seclusion,
one's children far away,
with their own claims and concerns,
the weight of the bygone years
suddenly oppresses one
with the arrival of a stray postcard
from a son in another country:
a picturesque beach far away
evokes memories of one's childhood in a coastal village
half a century ago,
and fills the mind with an unspeakable sorrow.
The dark deserted beach
the swish of the wind
the roar of the sea
the smell of the surf
and little brown boys, playing in the sun.
The smiles and sounds come back
as if from another life.
I read father's reply and know
that I too was there--
and through many such spent lifetimes
I shall survive,
holding to my chest a millennia
of the collective memories of my race.
|Copyright © 2005 - Makarand Paranjape|