The Call

In the tumult of nations

you too tumbled down

all your fabled wealth beggared

in two hundred years.

 

                       Of

your many descendants, I

am like a missing valuable

unrelinquished yet by hope:

voices in the wind and fire

assure me I am only misplaced

not lost.

 

           In the frantic search

for the past, the mind throbs

like an skinned wound, and

unsteady fingers still grope

familiar places.

 

                 Even

this twilight reveals

cracks in the old fort wall.

The wretched stones, wailing

like inconsolable widows, once again

outstretch their leprous arms;

the marble facades gape at me silently,

stained with the pus of gouged-out

precious stones.

 

                      Once again

at the chamber of private audience--

"If there is heaven on earth,

It is this, it is this, it is this,"

I repeat to myself

and depart.


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  Copyright © 2005 - Makarand Paranjape