• Rahul Mahesh

THESE PALE BLACK SKIES

The earth beneath stays barren,

The crops have died and withered away.

A cloud of black passes me by,

Ashes I’d breathe as funeral pyres burn away.

Corpses half-eaten lay scattered,

Torn limbs adorn the streets.

Such vile imagery is this,

Life on earth hadn’t been this way before.

Children play among the carcasses,

Unmindful of the gore and pain.

They are used to this, he said;

As I pondered upon the desensitized man.

I remember these streets not too long,

Green, lush foliage greeted me.

Smiles and laughter welcomes me home,

Home? I wondered what that really meant.

I hear wails and cries far and loud,

Women clutching onto their infants warm.

How powerful is she who rides this storm strong?

A goddess amidst this misery.

I look for my mother in this wretched debris,

Among countless bodies I search for her visage.

Gruesome and grotesque are my travails,

Yet I soldier on searching for thee.

My eyes met her’s right then,

Lifeless and old she lay.

Beneath the dusty rubble she sleeps,

My beautiful mother! What have they done to thee?

She smiles no more, she ceases to look at me;

Say something, sweet mother! I scream.

But deafening silence is all I could feel.

Her lifeless body in my arms I lay,

No tears flow down my cheeks.

Stoic. I stand amid the wails,

Untouched by the heart’s painful agony.

I look up to the skies and wait,

As I hear the sounds of the fleet.

While men take shelter, run helter-skelter;

I stay with her, my mother in my arms.

Art Credits: 

Featured Image: https://in.pinterest.com/pin/173177548145586389/

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