The mother sitting on the rubble haunts me to doom
A child in her lap sucking the dried-up breast fills my eyes to gloom
With half-veiled face filled with misery
She rummages for a piece of life in the debris
And her eyes emptied of life look to the distant horizon
Numb, dumb and grief-stricken
Crushed, crumbled and totally thrashed.....
She clings to life to wipe her child’s tears
A soldier in arms- pathetic, helpless
Made to fight for the maniac’s fancies
Forlorn hopes, fallen martyrs
What do they fight for? Or for whom?
Two little eyes searching for father
Two little ears listening to missiles
Two little legs running for life
What do they gain in victory or defeat?
A widow on the blood-stained body
Wailing to bring him back to life
A mother with forlorn hopes
Weeping in vain for him
A father with unshed tears
Children with insecure future
Is it all we get from war?
Listen to the rumbling in the distance.....
Painful sigh for a missing brother
Desperate search for a ruined sister
Loud groaning of a lonely child
Heaving sigh of a widowed heart
Call of hunger? Thirst? For shelter?
The mysterious rustling of the refugees
The moving legs walking to infinity
With dim, lighted lantern and tight grip of little fingers.
Is it not war that destroyed them?
Is it not hatred that crumbled their life?
Is it not bloodshed that crippled them?
Is it not cruelty that numbed their spirit?
Is it not pride that initiates war?
Is it not greed that ignites enmity?
Is it not jealousy that destroys nations?
Where are the Gods? In Hell or in Heaven?
Prostrate at your feet, my tears soak your feet
Allah! Jesus! Krishna!
Come out of the book or the altar of the church
Step out of the temple and the mosque
Walk among us in flesh and blood
Chanting words of love and kindness
Filling our hearts with affection and sympathy
Teaching us the meaning of sacrifice
To live together- a life of peace and happiness.
prasanna kumari's Other Poems
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Comments about this poem (War by prasanna kumari )
(March 26, 1874 – January 29, 1963)
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