Standing in the wilderness, I am a tale Of a struggle, A resistance, Dogged perseverance To hold on to existence. This was meant to be a check post On the border, manned by a few sentries. I was their workplace at day And at night, their nesting shade. Life then was peaceful, full of joy. My dear friend, nearby flowed the river In its cool waters, my reflection Danced and wavered. Not much activity happened here. The nights used to come Dressed to please and charm. The sentries who stood guard On the river embankment Talked in hushed whispers To drive away their sleep and boredom And I revelled in many of their secrets. Then the war broke Men and machines fought Against each other, For pride and to possess, To succeed in beating back death. Nowhere was any human dignity left. The day the war reached here, It was a night just like any other. The enemy came from the opposite bank of the river, Against a large platoon of men, The guards, my inmates, were ill-prepared And certainly, no match. They tried to fight back bravely But fell defending my territory; Their blood was soon left splattered On my walls and the river bank. It was all over in few hours. The enemy moved on and I Was left standing for many days; With splattered blood And stench of rotting flesh Filling the night air. I still stand today, forgotten, desolate. The boundaries have been re-drafted and I am long forgotten. Even the river has changed course, deserted me. I stand alone Carrying the tales of the past Etched in my crumbling bricks and mortar.
Copyright @ Goutam Dutta