Hello Darkness, My Old Friend!

Hello Darkness, My Old Friend!

… And Darkness, my old friend, himself
opened the door to his house on my second knock.
He greeted me with a wry smile on his lips
and a glass of whiskey, in his hand, on the rocks.

 

With my eyes, bloodshot and swollen,
with dried out trails of tear on both my cheeks,
I tried hard to forge a smile as best as I could,
but my friend put his other hand on my shoulder,
ushering me inside, he closed the door behind
and said, “Do not fake a smile when you cannot laugh!”

 

The ensuing silence hovered in the air,
as we walked through the hallway to his living room.
There we sat across a wooden table, dark and round,
he gave me a knowing look and I heaved a sigh!

 

A soothing smile slowly spread on his face,
like moonlight spreads over a passing cloud,
his voice grew as deep and calm as the Pacific
as he said, “Why have you sought me out, my dear friend?
I see you are troubled by some thoughts,
tell me, what can I do to put your mind at ease!”

 

“It is a vision” I said with another sigh,
more audible this time and he squinted his eyes a little,
as if his world gets darker when a sigh is heaved.
Nevertheless I carried on, “that keeps recurring
every time I close my eyes to sleep.
In that vision I see, topless towers
burning hot and fiery red, falling down,
dragging me down with them into the pit below.
I keep falling until jolted out of my slumber,
bare moments before I’m engulfed in that flame too.”

 

“So you wake up with your throat parched and dry,
wishing somehow you had never closed your eyes.”
Said my friend, as if he was present there,
when I was trembling in my bed, in shock and fear
like the wreckage left by a vicious storm
after the haunting vision had raged through my brain.

 

“Yes, you are right,” I said, “but tell me please,
if you know of a remedy for my disease…”
“Of course,” He cut me short and said, “I do!
You need time; it is only time that can heal you.
I do not how much time you have remaining in your hand
but this I know, if you have enough you’d be healed, my friend!”


 

Old Man Talking

Old Man Talking

“This emptiness you cannot fill, my son.”
Said he, like a wise fool.
The air of a man who had seen it all
hung around his mortal flesh, like the fleeting mist of dawn.

“But Nature abhors vacuum, does it not?”
Asked the perplexed listener in reply.
“Nature!” Exclaimed the old man as he said,
“What is that, my dear child, and emptiness –
does it mean anything at all? Or are you full
with a craving, unfulfilled, for too long?”

The listener, a young man in his late thirties,
might have been shaken by the rant,
was old enough, nevertheless, to stop his emotions
from flooding the Savannah of his face,
or so he would have thought, had he not heard –
“Your face is alright, son.” The words followed a hearty laugh,
(as if the old man could read his mind like a book)
“It’s always the eyes that betray.
But worry not, since now I have seen through it all,
I shall tell you what ails thy soul.”

And now the young man was visibly spooked,
as his raging thoughts roared, but how…
“Relax, my dear child,” once again,
knowingly said the ancient man,
“rest assured this is no witchcraft,
our eyes are windows to our soul which, I say, is but one!
What ails thee, my poor child, is not
an emptiness but being full of incomplete thoughts.
So either bury them with you or go
plant those seeds, even if just one or two…”

And as abruptly as it had begun, it was over.
One last time the old man looked into the listener’s eyes,
a long, lingering look, then he said goodbye and turned,
but the young man’s heart was standing still and frozen,
as the hairs on his back stood up –
for those old eyes were lifeless, like two polished slabs of glass.

 


 

A Godly Descent

A Godly Descent

Guess, I wanted to be a god in my previous life!
I, a mere mortal fool, with the audacity
to desire an abode and everlasting peace
atop Mount Olympus, Kailash, Fuji, Sinai
or any other name one calls it in their mother’s tongue!

    

In the beginning, like a proper fool, I thought,
I was destined to become the winged god of Love,
until I saw, two things were missing from the scene –
the bow and those little, sweetly poisoned darts, dipped in
the wild passion that proudly runs through his fair mother’s veins!

   

If I must have a bow, I thought, why not the best,
so I set my eyes for Apollo’s golden one;
for the next while or two, it seemed to work – the pen
despite its sheer lack of potency came alive
until the very dream woke me up and muttered, good night!

    

Now I rule the fiery pits of hell, though not as Hades
but a mere mortal one, setting his future bed of nails,
still dreaming of a Prometheus unbound, to bring some light
unto the dark world and succeed where this mortal fool has failed!


 

The Pessimist Talking

The Pessimist Talking

Still you’d say, death would not have been better
than this life of looking the other way,
of silent compromise with the devil
and perchance even worse! “But tomorrow…”
Yes, what this afternoon was yesterday;
that is how tomorrows will ever be
a past hope, an illusion in the end!

       

Still you’d root for friends over solitude,
as if our company and partners say
more of us than what we are underneath
and perchance even lie! “But a real friend…”
A wolf, hidden behind the face of man;
that is how all friends will turn out to be,
a promise, that was shattered in the end!

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She Greets The Sun

She Greets The Sun
Written for and Dedicated to my good Friend, Kholood Azz.

 

Neck down an Imazighen sculpture, aware of her head,
where the fire burns an intense shade of blue, not hectic red!
One feet straddling the azure Mediterranean, she puts
the other on the glittering sands of cruel Sahara,
where the crickets never sing and the grains, both fine and crude
do not know the bliss of rain in hearts, made of Silica!

 

“You,”, she cried, casting her fiery eyes to the east, “unruly sun,
wake up from your weary sleep”, she insisted, “and pierce the horizon
with light from the fire that burns inside you, as it does in my head,
fusing lighter elements into the core building blocks of life,
so I can welcome those numerous blinding flashes of brightness
and know if the fire burns equally within my heart, limbs and strides!”

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