Many times I have proudly thought
of loving you;
each of these moments of mine
are themselves victims
like that dog Laika
moving for years in the emptiness of space.
The victim is this age we are born.
The victim is not just that man
crucified two thousand years back
or that old man
who fell with his face down
in the prayer meeting at Delhi
forty five years ago
or the youthfulness of Marylin Monroe.
at last sacrfice lies
in the justification of life.
Sometimes you are very close to me
or sometimes you are not there
sometimes I am not there
and at other times
neither both of us nor others are there
and rain and summer and winter
come and go;only a little of happiness,
a little of sadness,
a little of emptiness
goes on being sacrificed.
Rabindra K Swain
THE PRICE OF POSTCARD HAS NOT GONE UP, HAS IT?
No, the price has not gone up
for long years.
Even in this new budget
the price remains the same
as before : fifteen paise.
take this Malli,for example.
She would be nearly seventy
but till today
she has not written a post card.
She has never had the need of it.
Only two or three months back
she got a card from her grandson
after her daughter and son-in-law
settled in Kharagpur
getting a job in the Railways.
Says the oldwoman,
this Puja vacation
her daughter and son-in-law
will come home.
Her neighbours will compliment her
on her house being festive on the occasion.
Would Mallibudhi care anybody, then ?
Malli will go on being a silent onlooker
to her children's cries,
jokes and laughter, to the rites
and festivals, to time's maya
and to the increased expenditure in the family.
The old days of her poverty would then brew
in the dry bones of her conscience
it is the slow dying, not her death,
that would then cascade like water
down her wrinkled hands.
how would she know the world is so big ?
Is she a cloud in the sky
or a barge drifting on some sea ?
Has she ever seen the hands of history
in the book of her grandchild ?
Hers is only a small life
standing day after day
like that fifteen-paise post card
whose price has not gone up for a long time.
Rabindra K Swain