by Krishnarasa Seshadri
At the door of Death
As the one question knocks
Persistently the walls of his living heart.
Death reveals Himself, seven suns later.
Death lives not in Hell, nor Heaven
Nor amid reeking carcass, nor amid purging souls.
No, Death embellishes the throne of his own Empire,
The King of Liberation and the Liberated.
Death is a kindly demigod, radiant and young.
His tongue speaks naught but the truest of the Truth.
Death smiles at the visitor, a human
Clothed in earthliness-a mortal.
The Human bows, and asks
“All conquering, all pervading Lord Death,
I seek answers!
What is Life? ”
“A choice between Good and Comfort.
All that is Good may not be a comfort,
And all Comfort, not always good.
Choose wisely, bravely and
You shall then have lived a life.”
“Then what is Death, What are You? ”
“A reversal of Life?
The End of all creation?
A New Beginning?
Darkness and Destruction?
What are You, then? ”
Persists his persistence.
Death laughs again.
“I am Change.
I change all that is mortal.
That which is immortal, I cannot touch.
I take the body, the senses, the mind and the intellect
But the Indestructible within all this,
I cannot touch! ”
The mortal bows, his questions answered.
He bows and turns to leave.
But as he turns, one more question tumbles out:
“Can Death be conquered? ”
Death laughes yet again, and says,
“Conquer birth and you conquer Death.”
And closes the door.