A Not So Distant Dirge

A Not So Distant Dirge elegy

Uploaded by Archana Kaul

The heart rending wail from the floor below
Found its way into the corridors of my mind,
Echoing in my brain long after it subsided.
It was Munna’s mom, who died that morning,

As drastically as Jigjri’s son lost his life to cancer,
As rapidly as Anju’s husband left for a new voyage
Some days back leaving their families smaller.
Death seems to be lurking with his scythe in hand.

We all cried as much for the departed, as for ourselves,
Recognizing in each departure, our worldly attachments,
To those with whom fate has knotted our lives, memories
Of which cannot be washed away fully by death and time.

Death is a finality, as bare and stripped and true
As our own birth, and of every living thing on earth.
We copiously mourn only the seemingly final departures.
We die a thousand deaths with a heart still pulsating.

Often, it seems there is as much life surrounding death,
As there are slices of death in our living-breathing world.
These come in heaps of hopelessness, and drowned dreams
As we are borne away, with each and every breath of life.

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Archana Kaul

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Experienced researcher and freelance writer, who has written articles for newspapers on various subjects. An articulate teacher, with experience of teaching students of History B.A. (Honours). Possess communication and analytical skills that helped while working (teaching dance and theatre) with young children in the voluntary sector. Running a Non Profit Organisation in East Delhi, Srijanatmak Manushi Sanstha
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