(1959 / Imphal, Manipur / India)

Poetry

A sleepless night, a lovelorn night, and
poetry arrived silent, to console
my wounded being.

It said, never mind the song,
never ming the lovers and
your dreams. Thus it left me,
where it found me.

It led me by the hand to its threshold,
and dared me enter its haunted house
of mirrors, alone.

And the first reflection I saw,
was my naked shame, my empty hands,
and a lifetime of silence.

And I saw my self-selected pain,
the entire history, unveiled
by memory and thirst. I saw
my happiness, against a backdrop,
which is sadness.

And then I knew, I can neither live
nor hate. And the last reflection I saw,
was my naked shame, my empty hands,
a lifetime of silence


May 1985

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