The things we’ve lost

Staring beyond the hazy windows, 
into the bylanes of your past. 
Where the gutters are open and doors are locked,
of every house and home you’ve lost. 

You played in the mud and on the swings, 
in the gardens of your childhood. 
Now the park is empty and grass is  barren,
You still visit often, as you should. 

The teenage years of rebellious angst,
walking around like a loaded gun. 
No hedged bets or second guesses
When did you lose that conviction? 

And you’ve also lost the courage to dream,
so tell me more about it today. 
You never did trod on the beaten path, 
but now you’re too scared to stray. 

Tell me about those two best friends, 
you thought would stay forever. 
When the laughter died and the darkness came, 
they hid like the sun in bad weather. 

I see you’re finally opening up, 
but there’s more  I’d like to know. 
Tell me about the losses you’re hiding
and this time, please go slow. 

You’ve lost all that fire  in you’re  heart, 
you doused  it with logic and reason. 
The man you’ve always wanted to be, 
how quickly that’s come undone. 

Do you miss his hands  upon your face,
Or how naked  your speech would become? 
Your heart has lost the way it once felt
– the beating of a thousand drums. 

You’re sobbing now as you recount the night
Death told you an elaborate lie. 
He promised he wouldn’t visit if you called,
but  became the darkness in your eyes

I see you carry these losses with pride
as they sit heavily upon your frame. 
And life has a way of humouring itself,
by having victory & defeat look the same. 

You’ve now recounted all the things you lost
& I notice Hope is still in play. 
Then you look straight at me, with a funny smile, 
And I wish you’ve  nothing more  to say. 

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Do you see?

Ever seen a group of strangers
and wonder what they’re really like?
Beyond the haze of emptied drinks,
are there hidden a hundred lies?

By now you should be getting better
at breaking through facades, my friend.
I hope you’re one who asks and listens,
because you cant’t tell a story from its end

Do they worship the gods out of fear,
or have miracles made them believers?
Have they been giving second chances,
or do they not believe in adventures?

Do their hearts ring loud and true?
If they cut, would the blood be red?
Or have they trained it to beat in silence,
choosing love dictated by their head?

Does passion still run riot in their soul,
toying around with the plans they lay?
Or does it only creep up in the silent night,
and escape before the break of day?

Does pride enable their heads be held high,
or was respect short-changed at the fair?
Is loyalty synonymous with their name,
or an outdated virtue they don’t share?

Do they wade in the shallow waters,
on the tides of gratification?
Are they magnanimous enough to forgive?
Or so small, they demand perfection?

For if they do, then they must know,
they follow generations of men,
who overlooked the true essence of being,
yearning for earthly heaven.

Embattled

Not everyone can see –

the gift is but for a few –

the souls around us that try,

but are unable to break free.

 

What a fascinating fight it is,

this periodic jostling and jousting.

Between her spirit that wants to live

and the cages that engulf it.

 

Seemingly free and unhindered,

dancing to a rhythm of her own.

Unbridled and magnetic,

her pull irresistible.

 

Her soul flirts with freedom,

occasionally going where  it hasn’t.

It seems close to finding a release,

in this soiree of beauty and persistence.

 

And then you see her colour change,

as invisible bars surround her.

the captors let her have some fun,

but they wont free her just yet.

 

She fights, hacks and pushes

at the cold, steel rails of prison.

Unseen to all observers,

who feel she’s just stopped dancing.

 

This impenetrable monstrosity,

painstakingly earned over time.

A chain for every battle she lost,

and one for every victory that scarred.

 

She ran her fingers across the cage,

her bones now colder than the metal.

She saw a timeline of her life,

now held hostage by her every struggle.

 

So then she finally relents,

when she knows there is no escape.

The cage stops the constricting,

now the prisoner is back in place.

 

With every unsuccessful attempt,

the steel singes  her spirit.

The soul has no freedom,

but it continues to try.

 

 

For now.

Then and Now

You hear the temple bells ring,
you instantly send out a prayer,
before your realize
you’ve run out of faith.

 

You fight and you fail,
you lose and regain
you want to try a final time
but you’ve run out of chances.

 

You keep giving, don’t ask
you don’t receive, you forget
so you give some to yourself
But you’ve run out of love.

 

You conjure up a vision
that reignites the fire
of which only embers remain
But you’ve run out of dreams.

 

Selectively ignorant,
unseeing and unfeeling
you want to believe in them,
but you’ve run out of  patience

 

This is a theatre underway
and you must choose your part
You rummage through the roles
but you’ve run out of faces.

 

Hands of the clock
now unable to bear witness.
Before you realize,
you’ve run out of time.

 

 

 

 

 

Five Kinds of Being.

Ageing in the shadows,

cruelly watched by Time.

Unmoved as Change saunters by,

stubborn, decadent – Parochial.

Bathed in moonlight,

a silhouette of curves,

carrying shadows of ambiguity

hollow, deceptive – Cynical.

Lying in the darkness,

with dreams long dead.

Stars promising a tomorrow,

peaceful, conciliatory – Denial.

Walking in the sunshine

with a swagger unburdened.

A soul traversing the fringes,

weightless, unplanned – Mystical.

Emerged from nothingness

A voice that asked all questions,

with love that healed all wounds,

fierceness that bound the frayed

and character that scared all weakness.

Invigorating, human – Empyreal.

 

 

Him and Her

He was like the ocean

Deep, vast and churning,

She was like the skies above

bright, endless and beautiful.

When you saw them, you knew,

They oscillated between unseen ranges,

a jostling you couldn’t put into words,

best witnessed in their discreet exchanges.

He, serene and calm on the surface,

within him were worlds seeped in mystery.

Corals of dreams, trenches of despair,

the sea-bed etching his scars through history.

Seemingly distant, she floated above,

weaving displays of her own intricacies.

Carrying sunshine and then piercing rain,

the Temptress forging her own fantasies.

Many a man, voyaged and vanquished,

in attempts to fathom his untested might.

But he only raged, or quietly retreated,

when she shone through the moons of varying plight.

The colors  he wore; a reflection of her being,

From emerald greens to blues of tiffany.

He gave, gradually, bits  of himself,

both interlocked  in nature’s symphony.

Longingly they looked,

at the other from a distance.

Resigned and reconciled,

to their destined separation.

Yet, if they looked,

as she turned a deep red,

They’d see themselves kiss,

somewhere on the horizon.

The Malaise.

Everyone here, steadfastly ignorant,

they all look but refuse to see.

Warped in their heady dreams and visions,

the questions of existential reality.

 

Everyone here, strongly guarded,

arresting their hearts, lest it flutter again.

Refusing to feel, abdicating rawness,

finding comfort in the synthetic and vain.

 

Everybody here, torn slowly asunder,

by the simplicity of struggle, its everyday strife.

Terracottean spirits embellished with pride,

know to make a living, not truly a life.

 

And everyone here, everyday is running,

pacing furiously or steadily trudging.

Blood up their faces, breaths getting louder,

heart drumming up chaos but pace unrelenting.

 

Because everyone here is shredded by silence,

Its noiseless cacophony and sudden intrusion.

The overwhelming burden of impending stillness.

And so, faster we run, towards implosion.

Note : A little bit of literary freedom exercised with the word ‘terracottean”. Intended to indicate fragility, malleability.