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Sunset of our Lives – by Robin Gupta, Principal Advisor- VoW

What is clearer now,

More than it was before;

Is the sun lingering in crimson cloud,

over the dying day.

The houses, at times home,

That we lived in and left, behind

Are a chiaroscuro of puzzling images,

Without sequence, no arrangement, either;

Images of loves that seemed so potent,

So full of promise,

not so long ago.

Our children tugged at our sleeves then

with eyes moist with tears;

‘Not going to school, not without you.

They played hide and seek around a rockery

Of  the flowering cactus, we built for them

In the house that was our home

to take them to Greece, where lived Socrates

with Aristotle and Plato strolling

beneath groves of Olive trees.

We put up a tall bronze statue of Neptune

Standing tall in the midst of a fountain;

Not knowing the children would be lifted

By the sea god;

to distant lands; over distant seas;

And when they waved their small palms

To say adieu; it was a finality;

In fact a goodbye!

‘See you Christmas week’ they said

With armloads of basement sale gifts.

‘We will come to see you;

See you again and again’

‘Age is just a number,

did you not know’

‘ We will come to you again,

but what will we do here,

Where’s the action’ they asked.

‘There is no action here,

Just the cows slowly returning

To their homes and temple bells

Against the rising cadence of Raag Shri

That the temple priest sings

Tonelessly.

 

There is no action here dear child

There never was anything that changed

But for the seasons and little children,

Growing big like you are now.

So go your way my darlings,

We will sit by the vacant bandstand

Full of thoughts of you

There is no action here,

But for the rhythmic rocking

of my mother’s chair.

 

Robin Gupta,

29th June 2020