Foreheads with lines of anxiety shining,
Feet lost in search of a path unknown
Faces bearing a familiarly strange look
Bodies bustling in a crowd of chaos
Hearts strangled by the noose of stress.
They stand in a queue
which follows rules of the daily grind.
They board a train
which has no steam left for new journeys.
The wheels run on tracks
that are too smooth to feel the weariness.
A damaged soul
needs time to heal and get up.
But it is often mistaken for a slain soldier
that lies in the gory battlefield
and trampled upon.
It's defeated, but it doesn't die
It remembers every feet that trod on it
But finds power in the struggle to overcome
the pain of being mistaken - deep within
It fights another battle which it can't fail to win.
We all are fragile hearts
saddled with hope
trying hard to hide
those secret dreams
that weep tears of blood
till the veneer of self-deceit falls off
And yet again
in an hour of listless isolation
a past image limns a tear
in the blank sheet of my heart;
An unhealed memory aches
to share a hidden wound's predicament.
A lonely dream sleepwalks
as a blindfolded desire looks on helplessly.
Agony of a loss runs deep in my withering veins
The blood feels dead by a vacuum of nothingness.
It was a regular day, but with some aberrations and slips.
My wife left the half-finished cup of tea
and hurried to catch her bus, as always,
except that she forgot her usual waving of the hand at me:
a gesture I had grown so accustomed to.
My son carried that burden on his shoulders
and rushed out of the room, like he did
but he didn't bang the door behind him:
a noise that I had got so familiar with.
The elevator had been 'full'
and my steps moved towards the stairs as a routine
Just that the lift reached the ground floor before me
I lost the race that I had been winning till now.
The scooter needed seven kicks to start
and I could smell the belching smoke as I sat to drive
when I realized that something was missing:
the helmet that I could never do without.
The watchman at the gate was busy making some entry
and didn't greet me with that customary 'hello'
I sped past him, without bothering
to offer him back a broad smile.
There were normal bottlenecks
I tried paving my way through the nightmarish traffic
But encountered two cabbies trading punches on the road
and I punched in late.
Putting my bag near my office computer
My hand reached my pocket for the mobile.
I checked it, one unread message:
'Meet me asap: Boss'.
I thought it was about missing the deadline,
But it was another slip: the pink one.
Beyond the layoffs...the invisible ache
This ******* of insight,
in a thought
that mocks the shackles
A word comes out
screaming at me
from the blank page.
Unwritten and unsaid till now
it no longer wants to stay
in the white void of mute inarticulations,
but as it leaves the snow-like sheet,
it refuses to show itself to the world
and merges in the
unseen sky of infinite expressionlessness