Poems by

The Burial

a poem by Rajiv99

Hold the Earth! You will fly away
With the Careless wind.
Grow Arms; as many as Hundreds;
Else become a heavier Grain.

They learnt it from the Sun:
Abide the path!
From the Stars,
The Birds,
The Trees and Wasps;
Better the skill each day.
Master Craftsmen are they;
Dressing up the space,
Honoring dead.

Here comes the carriage!
The fragrance of corpse, perfumed with roses;
They hum and drum in the puddles with joy,
And turn the wheel, like playthings of a child.

Soldiers, porters and lovers
March towards the river.
A familiar walk; that thick-legged walk;
Pressing down the hardened earth.
The Drum beats louder,
Hushing all the petty sounds;
Mute spectators!
Filling eyes; spilling flowers;
We are Safe! We are Safe!
We are Safe!

The large flabby shadows;
Weary, fatigued with every stride;
Lugged back and forth,
They sway side to side.

The strides are long; make it longer;
A little-more even;
Now Walk, Walk, Walk.

The setting Sun trembles,
Shivers on the Holy River;
And the river flows.
They float and swim,
Mourning the dead,
On the waves that sting fondness.
They do not love; they are lovers;
Their thirsty nerves
With a large mouth;
All become quiet;
Soaked, Drunk, Sane.

The corpse is rested;
More wood! More oil!
For the Thick parts.
A “Crackle” in the smoky heap
Awakens a frail Sadhu,
Wrapped up in Palash robes.
His skin; wrinkled, dehydrated; smeared
Ash, Vermilion, Turmeric-
All the shades of cunning Truth.
The flame in his Eyes,
Burning the insides.

His smooth flat belly,
Heaves angrily in complain:-

Stir the Ash!
Leave not the Smoke;
Leave not any Perfume;
Burn them again!

Insoluble treacherous toxins
Form mighty clouds of rain;
Die well! Burn well!
(Don’t spare the dead)
Uncover every grain.